"Why was my burden so heavy?" I
slammed the bedroom door and leaned against it. "Is there no rest
from this life?" I wondered. I stumbled to my bed and dropped onto
it, pressing my pillow around my ears to shut out the noise of my existence.
"Oh God!" I cried. "Please let me sleep! Let me
sleep forever and never wake up!" With a deep sob I tried to will
myself into oblivion, then welcomed the blackness that came over me.
Light surrounded me as I regained consciousness. I focused on its source
... the figure of a man standing before a cross.
the person asked,
"Why did you want to come to Me before I am ready to call you?
"Lord, I'm sorry. It's just that ...
I can't go on. You see how hard it is for me. Look at this awful
burden on my back. I simply can't carry it anymore."
"But haven't I told you to
cast all of your burdens upon Me, because I care for you? My yoke is
easy and My burden is light."
"I knew You would say that. But why
does mine have to be so heavy?"
"My child, everyone in the
world has a burden. Perhaps you would like to try a different one?"
"I can do that?"
He pointed to several burdens lying at His feet.
"You may try any of these."
All of them seemed to be of equal size.
But each was labeled with a name.
"There's Joan's," I said. Joan was married to a wealthy
businessman. She lived in a sprawling estate and dressed her three
daughters in the prettiest designer clothes. Sometimes she drove me to
church in her Cadillac when my car was broken. "Let me try that
one!" How difficult could her burden be? I thought.
The Lord removed my burden and placed Joan's on my shoulders. I sank to
my knees beneath its weight. "Take it off!" I said.
"What makes it so heavy?"
I untied the straps and opened the top.
Inside was a figure of her Mother-in-law, and when I lifted it out, it began
to speak. "Joan, you'll never be good enough for my son," it
began. "He never should have married you. You're a terrible
mother to my grandchildren ... "
I quickly placed the figure back in the pack and withdrew another. It
belonged to Donna, Joan's youngest daughter. Her head was bandaged from
the surgery that had failed to resolve her epilepsy.
A third figure was Joan's brother. Addicted to drugs, he had been
convicted of killing a police officer.
"I see why her burden is so heavy, Lord. But she's always smiling
and helping others. I didn't realize..."
"Would you like to try
another?" He asked quietly.
I tested several. Paula's felt heavy. She was raising four
small boys without a father. Debra's was heavy, too. She had a
childhood of sexual abuse and a marriage of emotional abuse. When I came
to Ruth's burden, I didn't even try. I knew that inside I would find
arthritis, old age, a demanding full-time job, and a beloved husband in a
"They're all too heavy, Lord," I said. "Give me back my
As I lifted the familiar load once again, it seemed much lighter than the
look inside," He said.
I turned away, holding it close. "That's not a good idea,"
"There's a lot of junk in there."
"Let Me see."
The gentle thunder of His voice compelled me. I opened my burden.
He pulled out a brick. "Tell
me about this one."
"Lord, You know ... it's money. I
know we don't suffer like people in some countries or even the homeless here
in America. But we have no insurance, and when the kids get sick, we
can't always take them to the doctor. They've never been to a dentist
and I'm tired of dressing them in hand-me-downs."
"My child, I will supply all
of your needs ... and your children's. I've given them healthy bodies. I
will teach them that expensive clothing doesn't make a person valuable in My
Then He lifted out the figure of a small boy. "And this?"
I hung my head, ashamed to call my son a burden. "But, Lord, he's
hyperactive. He's not quiet like the other two. He makes me so
tired. He's always getting hurt, and someone is bound to think I abuse
him. I yell at him all the time. Someday I may really hurt him ...
"My child," He
said, "if you
trust Me, I will renew your strength. If you allow Me to fill you with
My Spirit, I will give you patience." He
then took some pebbles from my burden.
"Yes, Lord," I said with a sigh. "Those are small, but
they're important. I hate my hair. It's thin, and I can't make it
look nice. I can't afford to go to the beauty shop. I'm
overweight and can't stay on a diet. I hate all my clothes. I hate the
way I look!"
"My child, people look at
your outward appearance, but I look at your heart. By My Spirit you can
gain self-control to lose weight. But your beauty should not come from
outward appearances. Instead, it should come from your inner self, the
unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in My
My burden now seemed lighter than before.
"I guess I can handle it now," I said.
"There is more," He
said. "Hand Me
that last brick."
Oh, You don't have to take that. I can
"My child, give it to
Me." Once again His
voice compelled me. He reached out His hand, and for the first time I
saw the ugly wound.
"But, Lord, this brick is so awful, so nasty, so ... Lord! What
happened to Your hands? They're so scarred!"
No longer focused on my burden, I looked for the first time into His face.
In His brow were ragged scars ... as though someone had pressed thorns into
His flesh. "Lord," I whispered, what happened to You?"
His loving eyes reached into my soul.
"My child, you know. Hand Me the brick. It belongs to Me.
I bought it."
"With My blood."
"But why, Lord?"
"Because I have loved you
with an everlasting love. Give it to Me."
I placed the filthy brick into His wounded palm.
It contained all the dirt and evil of my life ... my pride, my selfishness,
the depression that constantly tormented me. He turned to the cross and
hurled my brick into the pool of blood at its base. It hardly made a
"Now, My child, you need to
go back. I will be with you always. When you are troubled, call to
Me and I will help you and show you things you cannot imagine now."
"Yes, Lord, I will call on You."
I reached to pick up my burden.
"You may leave that here if
you wish. You see all these burdens? They are the ones that others
have left at My feet, Joan's, Paula's, Debra's, Ruth's ... When you
leave your burden here, I carry it with you. Remember, My yoke is easy
and My burden is light."
As I placed my burden with Him, the light began
to fade. Yet I heard Him whisper, "I
will never leave you, nor forsake you!"
A peace flooded my soul.
~ Author: Louise M.