Thought for the week from Rev'd Michelle.

Thought for the Week July 5th 2020 From the Rev'd Michelle

If I go into town shopping, it’s difficult to carry home too many bags of shopping. I’ve learned that the hard way.

And I remember the heavy bag I carried on my first day at Grammar School age 11. It was quite a walk up a big hill, and, of course, I wanted to take everything with me that I might possibly need – including PE kit, science overall, cookery apron etc. Of course, I didn’t actually need any of it.

Do you remember the bag you carried to and from school every day? Was it heavy? Did mum or whoever was picking you up take it from you sometimes? If they did then you may remember the freedom to run and play when the burden was lifted from your shoulders. It’s a lovely feeling of freedom.

We all enjoy it when we can put a heavy load down. Your arms feel light.

Today we hear Jesus making a wonderful offer. He said, ‘Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yolk upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yolk is easy, and my burden is light.’

These are such lovely words to hear for any of us who feel we are lugging around heavy loads in our life. And they seem so appropriate at the moment. Life has been difficult for all of us in all sorts of ways recently with the coronavirus, lockdown, restrictions on our life and our worship. We do feel weighed down.

And I think in all this, that we can easily put extra pressure on ourselves and add to our burdens.

For example, through worry – about the virus, about not doing our bit to help others in need, about our work, or financial situation.

Through guilt – that we’re in quite a comfortable position in all this lockdown while others are really suffering. Guilt about something we have done or not done, something that we think we’ll never be able to put right.

We might be burdened with a sense of duty – I’m not working hard enough; I could be doing more. Take a day off? That would be lazy.

Through wants – they’ve got one and I want one too. I wish I had more money and I could buy what I liked. I’d be happy if only I had …..

It’s strange, isn’t it, that even wanting things can weigh us down, but it’s true.

Whenever we are not at peace, then we are carrying heavy loads.

But the good news is that Jesus says we can give those loads to him, so that we are free to play, free to live in peace, free to enjoy life again.

When we are yoked, or joined up with Jesus, it is going to be much easier to carry the loads we need to bear at this time of uncertainty, and maybe we can let go of some of those loads which are weighing us down unnecessarily.

Let’s pray for the grace and the will to lay our burdens down today at the feet of Jesus.

Loving Lord Jesus, in you alone can I find rest and peace. Help me to let go of my burdens and to rest in your perfect and everlasting love. Amen.