The Upper Room Devotion for Monday, May 22, 2023, was written by Thomas Broadhead of Texas.
28 "Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. 29 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. 30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light."
Matthew 11:28-30 NRSV
MORE THAN WE CAN BEAR
For 42 years I had the privilege of serving as a pastor. I officiated at may funerals and ministered to many people going through trying and tragic situations. Often, I heard well-meaning people make statements that made me cringe. One such statement was: “God will never give you more than you can handle.” In my experience, we do go through trials that are more than we can bear. In 1 Corinthians 10:13, Paul wrote, “God is faithful, and he will not let you be tested beyond your strength.” But we often overlook the second half of that verse: “but with the testing he will also provide the way out so that you may be able to endure it.”
We may experience trials that are too much for us to handle on our own, but with God’s help we can endure them. Jesus says, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest…my yoke is easy and my burden is light” (Matthew 11:28-30 NIV). Jesus is speaking to those of us who are carrying burdens much too heavy to shoulder alone. And in those few words he reveals that when we experience such burdens we can trust God enough to hand them over to our Creator. Nothing is too heavy for God to carry!
Have you ever felt like the pressure and challenges you were facing were too much to bear? I have had seasons and times in my life where I looked toward Heaven saying: “That’s enough Lord. I do not need any more challenges.” Thomas’ reflection reminds us that Christ offers to share and even carry our burdens, we just need to humble ourselves to give them to Christ. Too often we struggle under the weight of obstacles we cannot carry alone. Yet, instead of turning to Christ, we attempt to struggle onward. Somewhere in our lives, we were taught that it is a sign of weakness to ask for help. However, recognizing the need for help is a sign of maturity and strength. May we all take time to lean on Jesus to help us bear our heavy burdens.
Heavenly Father, help us to release our concerns, burdens, and needs into your care. Amen.
- Thomas Broadhead