Wednesday, December 26, 2018
Download MP3 (right click to save)
Maybe it's a guy thing. Maybe it's just a Ron thing. But I hate to waste time or waste effort. You know? Here's what that it looks like when I've just returned from the grocery store to restock our empty refrigerator and shelves. I basically look like a mule – yeah, with bags all over my body, carried on almost every appendage. I don't want to make any more trips to the car than absolutely necessary, oh no, no! So I'm willing to try whatever calisthenics, to tolerate whatever overload will enable me to get everything in the house in one trip. This approach has been known to have its problems. Sometimes I drop a bag or two or one of them rips open; thus, making more work. And I've got this shoulder. Yeah, wrecked it pretty well. You think it might be traceable to carrying too much too many times?
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "Why Your Load Seems So Heavy."
There's a price to pay for carrying too much at once. You might be paying some of that price right now; the stress, the anxiety, the fatigue, the frustration of those who carry more than they're supposed to. I'm one of those. I know.
I also know how my Savior says I'm supposed to live. His instructions are very clear in our word for today from the Word of God in Matthew 6, beginning with verse 25. He says, "Do not worry about your life...look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your Heavenly Father feeds them...Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?...Why do you worry?...Do not worry...your Heavenly Father knows what you need...Therefore, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own."
First of all, you don't have to be a Biblical scholar to pick up Jesus' message here. He basically says it four times, "Do not worry." If you looked at us stressed out, freaked out, worn out warriors, you might conclude this is one of the most disobeyed commands Jesus ever gave. We do worry – a lot. And in so doing, we carry a heavier load than we're designed and equipped to carry. God has promised to give us what we need to carry today: daily bread, strength equal to your day, mercies new every morning, a cross to bear one day at a time, the renewing of our spirit day by day. But there's no promise about carrying your tomorrow while it's still today.
John Newton, the writer of "Amazing Grace" said, "Sometimes I compare the troubles which we have to undergo in the course of a year to a great bundle of sticks – far too large to lift. But God does not require us to carry the whole bundle at once. He mercifully unties the bundle and gives us one stick that we are to carry today and then another that we are to carry tomorrow, and so on. We might easily manage it, if we would take only the burden appointed for each new day. But we choose to increase our troubles by carrying yesterday's stick over again today and by adding tomorrow's burden to our load before we are required to bear it." That's great stuff!
John Newton nailed it. See, we add baggage from yesterday and the potential burdens of tomorrow to what we're carrying today, and we start dropping things, and stumbling, and even hurting ourselves. So much of what we worry about tomorrow never happens. And you won't have God's promised resources to handle tomorrow until tomorrow. So no wonder you're overwhelmed and discouraged! Dwelling on yesterday or tomorrow takes your focus off today so you don't even do today very well!
So approach your load God's way – take your busy life one day at a time, or maybe one stick at a time. That's how you do a massive load. And about tomorrow? Take advantage of God's awesome invitation, "Cast all your care upon Him because He cares for you." (1 Peter 5:7)