Saturday, February 19, 2011
BURDEN OR BLESSING
Many things that seem to us to be curses are in fact gifts from God, oddly packaged. The story is told of a woman who loved Jesus very much and wanted nothing more than to please Him. “I’ll gladly do whatever you ask,” she promised, hoping secretly for some noble and noticed place of service. To her dismay He handed her a heavy, rough burlap sack and asked her to carry it as they walked through life together. She was curious about the contents of the sack, but it was tied closed with a strong cord and so many intricate knots that clearly it was not meant to be opened just yet.
As they started on their way, the woman sank down under the weight of her burden. “It’s too heavy!” she protested. “My strength is made perfect in your weakness, and I will always be at your side,” Jesus reassured her. “When the way gets steep or you feel faint, lean on me.”
So they walked on together, and it was just as Jesus had said. Sometimes the woman stopped and told Him that the weight was too much for her to bear, and so they bore it together. By and by they arrived at their destination. The woman set her bundle down at Jesus’ feet and heaved a sigh of relief. Her burden-bearing days were over. “Let’s see what’s inside,” Jesus said with a twinkle in His eye. With one stroke of His hand the knots were undone, the sack fell open, and the contents spilled out. “The riches of heaven!” the woman exclaimed as her eyes feasted on treasures of unearthly beauty. “This is your eternal reward—my gift in appreciation for all you has been through,” Jesus explained.
Astonishment turned to tears of joy. The woman fell at Jesus’ feet and said, “Oh Lord, forgive me! I misunderstood all these years. If I had only trusted you and not doubted and questioned! If only I had understood what was inside the sack, it would have been a joy to carry. I never should have grumbled or complained!”
You may look around and see others whose burdens appear to be much lighter than your own, and you may wish you could trade places. But if God were to grant you your wish, you would find that their burden would be even heavier and harder for you to carry than your own, for it was not meant for you. Each burden is tailor-made for its bearer, and is fashioned with the greatest of love and care. God knows exactly what’s best for you. Trust Him.
God Bless You