Good Morning Family Of God - Salvation Army Canada
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    Good Morning Family Of God

    Letter 48 December 3, 2020 by Majors Brenda & David Allen

    Are you carrying a burden today?  A burden can be defined as ‘a trouble of life’. Even this week I have heard of such varying burdens people are carrying.

    Yesterday two of our family members carried a Christmas tree into our living room.  They carried the bulky tree in and out twice.  The first time the discovery was made that it was too tall.  Back out it went to have a few more inches cut from the bottom.  

    Burdens are best carried with someone else.  Better yet, they are best carried by someone else! 

    The Psalm writer said: “The Lord deserves praise. Day after day he carries our burden” (Psalm 68:19) and, "Cast your burden upon the LORD and He will sustain you" (Psalm 55:22).

    We would like our burdens removed, putting down what we are carrying, and saying, ‘done’.  Often, we feel that the burden is not something we are capable of and so our tendency is to try and get rid of the burden, cover up the burden, distract ourselves from the burden, or numb the burden. Interesting, I read that even travel can be used “to embrace a nearly fictional experience that is free of the burdens of life.” The article went on to say that many, who have used travel as a quick escape from their burdens, are feeling anxious because Covid19 has denied this freedom.  They are left wondering what to do with their burdens.

    Burdens are real, but so is the burden bearer.  Jesus, God made known, said, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28).  Burdens are not always taken away – that is not how our God works.  David said, “even though I walk through the valley…you are with me” (Psalm 23:4).  Emmanuel, ‘God with us’, is the name given to Jesus, recorded in the Christmas story. He is with us today, not only seeing our burden, but delighting to carry it for us. He comes near to us, in love, as one whose “weakness is greater than our strength” (1 Corinthians 1:25).

    Hold out your burden to the burden bearer today.  With open hands invite Jesus to carry that which is beyond your strength to hold. The burden can be health, anxiety, legalism, marital tension, work, fear, Covid19, loneliness, addiction, children, finances, grief, grudges, pride, insecurity, anger, – an incomplete list!  The one, who is true to His word, freely offers peace, light, joy, hope, sustenance, wisdom, courage, self-control, endurance, love, healing, freedom, friendship, – an incomplete list!

    In the Salvation Army Church, a common place of prayer is found at the front of the sanctuary. It is named the mercy seat.  It is a place where praises and thanksgiving are offered to God.  It is also a place where burdens are carried and shared.  The beauty of this place is noted when the person praying is not alone, rather someone is at their side or standing near in prayer, fulfilling God’s command to “bear one another’s burdens” (Galatians 6:2).  We can find our own place of prayer, in conversation with the burden bearer, in our homes today.  He is with us. We can also invite someone into our journey so we do not carry a burden alone.

    427: Is There A Heart O'erbound By Sorrow

    1. Is there a heart o'erbound by sorrow?
    Is there a life weighed down by care?
    Come to the cross, each burden bearing,
    All your anxiety, leave it there.

    All your anxiety, all your care,
    Bring to the mercy seat, leave it there,
    Never a burden He cannot bear,
    Never a friend like Jesus
    .

    2. No other friend so keen to help you;
    No other friend so quick to hear;
    No other place to leave your burden;
    No other one to hear your prayer.

    All your anxiety, all your care,
    Bring to the mercy seat, leave it there,
    Never a burden He cannot bear,
    Never a friend like Jesus.

    3. Come, then, at once; delay no longer;
    Heed His entreaty, kind and sweet;
    You need not fear a disappointment;
    You shall find peace at the mercy seat.

    All your anxiety, all your care,
    Bring to the mercy seat, leave it there,
    Never a burden He cannot bear,
    Never a friend like Jesus.

    Burden bearing God, you are familiar with all our ways.  You came to earth, experiencing life as we do. You are familiar with the carrying of burdens.  You came to carry humanity’s greatest burden, of separation from you, to the cross. Your death and resurrection brought us your life – a relationship with you the living God. In this, we freely come to you with our burdens, at all times, and in all places, knowing that you are with us.  AMEN

     

    With care and in prayer,

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