"Leaning House" Near Rescue, Virginia

I wish that the photo above had some sort of virtual tour feature like auto manufacturers provide on their websites for 360 degree interior and exterior views of their new cars.  It would give you a sense of what surrounds this old house that sits on Smith’s Neck Road between the towns of Carrollton and Rescue in Tidewater Virginia.  We passed it several times a couple of weeks ago while visiting friends and vacationing in the area. 

The house, which appears not to have been occupied for quite some time, has developed a significant lean to the north.  It is not unusual to see old houses and barns begin to lose their structural stability and start displaying a preference for one direction or another.  But this house is quite different in that it only has so far to go before it finds some additional substantial support.  Over the years, seedlings have sprung up all around the house and have now grown into tall, mature trees.  On the north side in particular (the direction of the lean) there is a uniform row of four or five trees that appear to be only a few inches from the side of the house.  If the house progresses much farther in its compass-like point to the north, it will soon find a firm place to rest on the sturdy trunks of the trees. 

The sight of this house reminded me of the blessing that it is to have people in our lives upon whom we can lean in times of weakness, discouragement, doubt, confusion, and sorrow.   This emotional support sometimes comes from friends, family members, or from our spiritual family in the body of Christ.  Of course, these are all two-way streets; mutual relationships in which we have the opportunity to be there for others in their time of need.  

“Bear one another’s burdens, and thereby fulfill the law of Christ.” (Galatians 6:2) 

“Therefore, strengthen the hands that are weak and the knees that are feeble, and make straight paths for your feet, so that the limb which is lame may not be put out of joint, but rather be healed.”  (Hebrews 12:12-13) 

“You just call on me, brother, when you need a hand.  We all need somebody to lean on.” (Bill Withers) 

One of the first two 45 rpm singles that I purchased when my parents bought a record player for my sister and me in 1972 was “Lean on Me” by Bill Withers.  Nearly forty years later, it remains one of my favorite tunes.  Hope you enjoy Withers’ performance of the song!