The last time I bought salt for our water softener I bought eight bags. And as I saw them lying in the trunk of the van I was doing the math. Well, if I take two bags each trip, that’s four trips. If I can get three bags in a trip, well, that’s three trips. But if I can carry four bags in one trip, that’s only two trips into the house and into the basement! So I got the four bags out, set them on the floor, grabbed them by the handles, picked them up, and got out of the garage, around the side of the house, into the front door, and was at the top of the stairs headed into the basement. I could feel my forearms starting to tire. Started down the stairs, I knew I didn’t have much time, as I was going down the stairs I could feel my fingers starting to open up. It was clear: I wasn’t going to make it. Four bags was just too heavy. So I quickly set them down before I dropped them and spilled everything everywhere.
Sometimes, life gives us burdens that slowly wear us down and cause us to crumble and to fall apart. What’s a person supposed to do in times like that? Times when they see that they’re too weak, that they’re not strong enough, times when they realize the burden is just too heavy? In the Psalms we read.
Place your burden on the Lord, and he will support you. (Psalm 55:22)
God, here, through this Psalm is promising that he’s going to use his strength to help us. That he would use his power to help carry the burdens. Sometimes Christians will say that God will never ever give me anything more than I can bear. I don’t know that that’s true. I think sometimes God does give us burdens that are too heavy for us to carry. And that’s the point. The point is that we need God. That we need his strength. We’re not strong enough! We need him. Those burdens then, as heavy as they may be, are a great blessing because they remind us that we need God.
The greatest burden that people try to carry is their guilt. They think that somehow they can make atonement for the things they’ve done wrong. That burden is just too heavy. That burden is not something that we can carry. But God has lent us his strength. He came in human flesh to live a perfect life. Jesus successfully carried the burden of the law and then he carried the guilt of all of our sins to the cross and there too overcame. He offered the payment that was sufficient to atone for all of our guilt.
So when your guilt gets you down don’t carry that burden. Do what the psalmist says place your burden on the Lord and he will support you. Acknowledge your sin, confess your sin, and Jesus will carry it. He has carried it and won for you the forgiveness of all your sins. So be assured that burden is carried by God. And then when other burdens come, the burdens of life, remember that your Lord is there to strengthen you. In that children’s hymn it’s express so beautifully: I am weak, but he is strong. Amen.