Help wanted: Must be able to lift up to 50 pounds.
Some jobs that many apply for carry the requirement of possessing the ability to lift heavy weight. The medical experts, and many trainers say when you lift heavy weight to lift with your knees, not your back.
To lift with your knees, you must first bend your knees, take hold of the item and then while holding it begin to straighten your knees as you stand. This takes the pressure off the back to carry the weight.
Over the past few months I have found myself lifting life’s problems with straight knees, and carried them around my neck. In an effort to try and make things lighter I bundled up all my woes into a bag, tied a rope around it and begun to drag them around. It took the weight off my lower back, but as the rope hung over my shoulder it pressed down on my shoulder causing a strain in my neck. Can you relate? How many times do we carry all of our problems around, piling them up until it’s too much?
Do we let go of our woes? No. Like me you may have put them all in a bag thinking it would make them easier to carry around. Oh, might I add, when we put them in a bag it also allows room for more woes to be stuffed in!
Before you write to me, I am not saying to ignore your problems. There are events that happen that we have to address. Things that need our attention, and require some action to be taken. However, there are some things we have ZERO control over that we carry around. Things that ultimately weigh us down. Things that we were never created to have to carry around.
I will admit I did not realize I was dragging my bag of 75+ pounds around until this past week. It was our verse that brought it to my attention:
“Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.” Mt. 11:28-30 NLT
For the last several years, I have served, studied, followed, and loved Jesus; however, this week Jesus words were eye opening. Thirteen words:
“Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens.”
That was me! You see I would go to Jesus. I would even talk to others about Jesus and try to get them to go to Jesus. The big difference was I would go to Jesus with all my heavy burdens! And, after when I left to go about my day I took my burdens back with me. I flung the rope of my bag of burdens over my shoulder, and began to pull as I walked with it. My bag of burdens, I am sure, looked like Santa’s bag of toys right before he leaves the North Pole! However, unlike Santa my bag was not full of toys! Can you relate? Are you dragging a bad of heavy burdens around?
This past week I began to stuff more burdens in my bag, until these words illuminated in my mind’s eye:
“let me teach you.”
After carrying my bag of burdens around for almost 3 1/2 years now I began to crumble. What started as having the ability to lift up to 50 pounds turned into pulling well over 100 pounds, as I stuffed more and more into my bag!
My crumble began this week with the reality of facing the possibility of losing everything. I realize some of you reading this may have lost everything, and are rebuilding, or already rebuilt. I can empathize with you. For me the biggest problem I dealt with was trying to fix things in my own strength. Trying to forward think, and plan for the best possible outcome or solution. If you read my blog last week that comes from my years spent in Corporate America. Again let me say, those things are not wrong. It helps to be prepared, and overcome an obstacle.
But friends, it should not exclude Jesus and what he is trying to teach us.
This week my knees began to give way, they would wobble as I pulled my bag around, and my neck would tighten trying to compensate for the weight. Tears would stream down my cheeks as solutions in my own strength looked bleak.
I have recently taken up the habit of walking daily. This has become my time with God. Now before you say, “that’s great!” Let me give you a glimpse of how it went, I would leave my bag on the side, go walking then pick it back up. Yes. And, a cou0le of times this week I took my bag of burdens with me, and drug it around on a 3 mile walk! Talk about a neck ache, and tired!
Finally, when it all seemed lost, and with this week’s verse echoing itself into the recesses of my spirit, I took my bag and dumped it out! Turned it upside down, and shook it, until everything fell out. I gave them all to Jesus!
On my walk I began to sing! I would make up a song to the Lord singing of His greatness, faithfulness, and RICH love and mercy! A few things happened:
- My step became lighter
- My neck no longer hurt
- Tears of turmoil turned to tears of joy, and
- I realized (along with some other walkers I’d pass by) why I am not in the church choir
Please understand, I realize my life will not be a rose garden. There will be times of trouble and things will happen that need attention. But, friends – when we give them to Jesus He is faithful! He is true to His words! He takes the weight and gives us His.
“For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light”
Jesus will take our burdens and lighten our load, but we have to give it to him. We cannot do what I did for years, give it and then take it back, while piling on more.
To mimic Dr. Charles Stanley, “Don’t rely on your natural eyes or pass judgment on your situation. You’ll draw the wrong conclusion. Rather, look to Him for understanding and allow Him to lead you to triumph.” Every Day in His Presence.
This week Jesus taught me – give Him my burdens. The result – my load was lightened, and a huge burden relieved!
Friends – if you are carrying around your own bag of heavy burdens let me implore you to drop it at the feet of Jesus. Give it to Him. And, the key is to leave it there.
©Gentle Whisper Ministries 2016
*pictures by blog.ecu.edu, redefineinggeny, pinterest