Throughout the summer I have been in and out of the office, and I must confess that has taken a toll on my blogging habits. Nonetheless, the trade-off has been in having wonderful times of travel with my family and great experiences with special friends.
While enjoying one final summer getaway last week (see photo at left) I read a great devotional by Dr. Charles Stanley. I've not stopped thinking about it since then and have mentioned it in several conversations over the last few days. I've tried to distill it into a single statement, but cannot choose any part of the article to omit. So, today I am giving you the whole entry, unedited, as food for thought. I pray you will find in it the same godly challenge that I have.
July 22, 2009
How to Handle Burdens
David was overwhelmed with the weight of external pressures and internal anguish. Burdens come in a variety of emotional, spiritual, and physical forms, but they all feel heavy and cause weariness. Every one of us can identify with David's desire to "fly away and be at rest" (v. 6).
Some of the loads we carry are not part of God's plan for us. We lug around the guilt that lingers even after confession of sin and load our backpack with worry about the future. Then we top it off with a little bitterness and unforgiveness because life has not been fair. These burdens are not from the Lord, and He will not help you carry what He has told you to release. (emphasis added)
Other burdens, however, are entrusted to us by God. He gives us responsibilities which can weigh us down, and He sometimes allows relational difficulties that tear at our hearts. Persistent problems and trials drain our vitality and threaten to overwhelm us.
Every circumstance in life is lovingly sifted through the Lord's fingers before reaching us. (emphasis added) From His perspective, those things which are too heavy for us are opportunities for dependence upon Him. God never intends for any of us to carry a burden without Him. He says to give it to Him (v. 22) and promises to sustain us.
Casting your cares upon God means releasing them fully into His control. You will no longer be free to manage and manipulate the situation toward your desired outcome, but the freedom Christ offers will release you from the burden's oppressive weight. He'll sustain you with His peace as you trust Him.