Recently, I began to re-read some of my older Christian books on the shelf. For January, I selected The Christian's Secret of a Happy Life by Hannah Whitall Smith. In the third chapter, I read Hannah's description of the average Christian, which I have paraphrased below...
"Most Christians are like a man who was walking along the road, bending over under the weight of a heavy backpack. When a wagon came along and saw him, the driver stopped and kindly offered to help him along his journey. The traveler joyfully accepted the offer of help. Once seated in the wagon, he continued to be bent forward beneath the weight of the pack, which was still upon his shoulders. The driver asked, "Why do you not lay your burden down in the wagon?" The traveler replied, "Oh, I feel that it is too much to ask of you sir, to carry both me and my burden too."
Hannah was very astute to see this HUGE problem in the Church. We are so excited for Jesus to save us, but we don't fully grasp the fullness of the salvation He offers. Jesus said, "Come to me all who are heavy burdened and I will give you rest." Matthew 11:28 Yet, too many Christians continue under heavy burdens, growing more tired each day. Much of our happiness is drained by these troubles. Our burdens are the fears, anxieties, addictions, worries, anger, unforgiveness, guilt, physical ailments, money, and other emotional baggage.
We need to realize we were never meant to carry these burdens. Jesus created you. He understands exactly how you are wired; what's happened to you; and your amazing destiny. He is far more equipped to deal with your struggles than you are. As your Lord, it is His desire and responsibility to care for you and all your needs. The difficulty often lies with us. It seems silly that we are able to trust God for our eternal salvation but able to not trust Him to deal with our finances or battle the hidden things in our heart that cause us fear or worry. On a daily basis, we allow these burdens to consume our thoughts and actions in the mistaken belief we can control or fix them. Most times, we cannot. Our focusing on troubles only leads to disappointment, discouragement, and disillusionment. But God has freedom for us, if we will dare to lay our burdens in His care.
I realize it's a hard thing to lay down your burdens in the daily care of the Lord. Sometimes, it requires you to continually put them back into His hands once you realize that you've taken them back and are ruminating on them again. When you realize how much He loves you, it makes it easier to trust Him to handle your burdens.
If you feel you can't turn everything over to God right now, than try trusting God with just one thing today. Give God one aspect of your life you can't handle or don't want to bother you any more. Then if any thoughts surrounding that issue come back into your mind, go back in prayer to God and apologize. Ask God again to take this issue and give it to Him. Thank Him for carrying not only the burden but for working it out in your favor. Then know God is working on your issue, even if you don't see any immediate resolution. As you learn to trust God in one area, your faith will grow and you will be able to give Him more and more areas and burdens.
Ultimately, every burden should be placed in God's hands. He is strong enough to care for you and carry every trouble that would plague you. God is willing and able to save you to the utmost. Take His yoke, it is light and easy.
An Alaskan Author, Prospector, Homeschool Teacher, Ordained Minister,
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