“Come to me all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 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. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30
Troubles, like stones, come in many shapes and sizes. Some are as huge as boulders, while others are as sharp as daggers. Some are used to step from place to place — perhaps to higher and drier ground, while others are used to carve and sharpen. But then there are those that weigh a ton — sink to the bottom, as others skip across the calm waters to disappear after the dance.
It’s funny, too how we collect stones! I can’t tell you the number of times one of my son’s has filled his pockets with rocks. I’ve often wondered how many could possibly fit in there before his belt no longer served it’s purpose! That many rocks and stones gets heavy to carry around. But it’s not unlike how we treat our troubles. We tend to collect those too! Hoarding them on the inside, burdening ourselves and others around us with the weight.
But this was never God’s intent! There was never a doubt we would encounter troubles — in fact, James said we would and they would be “trials [troubles] of many kind.” But what do I do with the many I encounter? I think, like the collector, I want to carry them around with me. I want to show them off like war wounds from the battlefield. Why in the world would I want to do this? Well, simply because I make my troubles all about me instead of living them through Christ in me.
The precious stone, like quartz, reflects its natural beauty when light shines through it. When Christ’s light shines through my troubles, the beauty of who I am reflects Christ in me! God wants me to live through my troubles, not live my troubles over and over. He wants me to live who I am! He wants me to relax in His Peace and stop reliving my suffering. Resting in Him will truly transform my fears into confident trust!
Lord Jesus, I store up my stones like a chipmunk prepares for winter! Your burden is light, but when I’m carrying my troubles I’m weary. You’ve promised me rest in you and I’m unloading my pockets of the stones I’ve collected. Big or small, I’m skipping them across your Peace, watching them dance upon your Grace and trust as they disappear in your Care.
“No one will be able to stand up against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you.” Joshua 1:5