It’s been awhile since I’ve even attempted this, hasn’t it? The few weeks that I have attempted it recently, I couldn’t streamline my thoughts into anything coherent. I think I was just over-shooting, beliving I had to come up with something deeply profound to impress all of you. Really, all I ever wanted this to be was a place to share anything at all that I learned in church on Sunday. So, I apologize for slacking off.
I haven’t really thought this through much, so bear with me as I just throw my thoughts out into cyberspace, hoping they make sense to at least one person!
Yesterday, there was just one thing that stood out to me, a simple statement my pastor made: “It is your cross. Embrace it.” It struck deeply.
You see, I look around, and am brokenhearted over many of the circumstances my family and friends find themselves in. Circumstances over which they have no control, and in which I cannot be of much practical use to them.
There are so many things I’ve been mulling over and praying about for weeks and months, which finally sharpened to a point. I heard the Lord speak clearly to me yesterday. I took a look at my own circumstances, and distinctly felt Him say:
“This is your cross. Embrace it.”
By default, embracing my own cross will force me to stop trying to carry the crosses of others. It’s that firstborn tendency I have to try and take care of everyone else while ignoring my own problems. It isn’t as easy as it sounds to take one’s own advice.
My cross is, after all, from the God Who Loves. Like a loving, responsible Father, he gives me this cross I bear to teach me, not to burden me. It is given to me by the God who wants me to be at peace.
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” ~Matthew 11:28-30 (NIV)
Since I am only human, the cross I’ve been asked to take up doesn’t feel as though I’m carrying something “light” or “easy.” Still, feelings are often misleading, and to embrace what I’ve been given requires me to choose to believe the absolute Truth of the verses above. If I don’t, I set myself up for a lifetime of feeling over-burdened, overwhelmed, helpless, depressed, and uncertain in my faith.
“Then he said to them all: ‘If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will save it.’ ” ~Luke 9:23, 24 (NIV)
Do you see? He assigns the cross he wants me to bear, but it is up to me to choose to carry it. I guess that’s what this all boils down to. A choice I need to make, daily.
This is my cross – and God’s word says that it is “light” and “easy” compared to the burdens I would heap on myself otherwise. I will lay down my desire to carry the crosses of others, and trust God to help them much better than I ever could.
I will embrace it – because I choose to trust God over my own feelings. At the same time, giving gratitude to Him who understands my feelings, and walks me through them, leading me deeper into joy.
Did you learn anything yesterday – whether in church or in life? Share it in the comments section. Or, if you have a blog, feel free to use the button in your post, and leave a link for me. I’d love to read your posts!