Perhaps it may turn out a sang,
Perhaps turn out a sermon.

-- R. Burns Epistle to a Young Friend

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

The Lifter



Cast your burden on the LORD, and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved. -- Psalms 55:22


It does not matter what our burden is, whether grief, regret, fear, addiction, confusion, or pain.  Some of us will say, I have made my bed and in it I will lie.  It is admirable and noble to accept the consequences of one’s actions or words with poise and grace.  Consequences are not the burden.  If my liver fails because I drank too much, there is not much to do other than accept it, but there is no point in not being at peace with God and having the peace of God while I wait for those consequences to run their course. 

Casting our burden on the Lord means that we recognize, first, our position of absolute dependence upon God.  We are created and sustained by Him.  Our lives are in His hands, and He may strengthen and enable as He sees fit, or He may limit us to suit His purposes.  We ought to pray for healing when we are sick, just as Paul did over his thorn in the flesh.  As was the case there, however, the answer may come that, This Is The Plan, at least for now. 

Our battle with an addiction may well be equivalent to a weightlifter’s battle with the iron. We pray for deliverance.   We struggle to overcome, but, sometimes, it is too much for us.  We drop it.  We can’t hold on.  We may not realize that even in failure we have become stronger.  But no one becomes stronger just pressed down and pinned by the weight.  It is in the effort to lift it clear and get out from under it that we are built up.  So, too, it is the struggle to free ourselves from a habit or compulsion that our character is developed for our place the kingdom and eternity. 

If I find myself constantly fighting against something, I may experience guilt and shame and self-accusation.  What is wrong with me that I cannot be free from this?  Give that burden to the Lord.  Without self-recriminations, we are free to focus on combating that which besets us. 

4 comments:

USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

Yes indeed. We do not hafta fight alone. In fact, it would be foolish to not ask God to take our burdens so that we can grow and become more effective Christians.

mushroom said...

My problem is that I so often get distracted and discouraged with the fact that there is a struggle. It's the old "if you're a person of faith why are you sick" question. Why aren't you delivered? Why are you still so messed up?

USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

I struggle with those same things, Brother.
Why am I fighting the same battles over and over?
WTH is wrong with me?
Why can't I obtain the same joy my Grandma had?

Often I find myself just going through the motions and feeling...I dunno, numb instead of alive.
And I hate it when my cynicism is validated.

I know the problems are mine and I know what I gotta do but instead of doin' it I get...overwhelmed.
Personally, I would be overjoyed to be simply whelmed at this point.

Inspiration is the key, I believe. Just need to reach out and accept it. But it's easier said than done.

mushroom said...

Amen.