Christ Alone Can Carry the Weight of Our Lives
Cares of this world can sink us if we’re not careful. Picking the right school, the right career path, whether to date and if so, who to date; making the right grades so we can go to the right school, going to the right school so we can choose the right career path and ultimately change the world. We are told to do, do, do, and to perform, perform, perform. We are constantly busy and never at rest. Life is a race to achieve, and so to rest means other people jump ahead of you. If other people jump ahead of us, then we’ve lost. So, we never rest. By rest, we don’t mean the hours of sleep we get each night, however, this desire to perform and to do can deprive us of our nightly needed rest. “It is vain that you rise up early and go late to rest, eating the bread of anxious toil; for He gives to His beloved sleep.” (Psalm 127:2)
What do we mean by rest? Primarily, what I mean is the rest found in trusting Christ with our cares and anxieties; but also, the simple act of closing the textbook, turning off the TV, and going to sleep. Rest is also a state of mind, of looking to Christ and trusting in Him; knowing our limitations and His great sufficiency. That is what we mean by rest.
We’ve let the world define too much of what it means to be productive. This generation, more than any other, feels the weight of being told to be world changers, that the future depends on us. There’s a story from scripture about Christ coming to his disciples, walking on water. At first, the disciples are terrified, thinking He is a ghost. Christ calms them with his reply, “Take heart; it is I. Do not be afraid.” (Matthew 14:25-27) That was His command to the disciples while they were on the turbulent sea, being tossed to and fro by the wind and the waves; and it is His loving command to us, who are beaten by the wind and waves of the cares and desires of this world. In the midst of all the busyness and cares the world throws at us, Christ is there, reminding us to “Take Heart,” and have no fear.
By focusing on Christ, the wind and waves of this world lose their velocity and their force. Looking to Christ puts them into perspective. The weight of the world is not on our shoulders. Our shoulders are too small, we could not carry them anyway; but Christ’s shoulders are big enough.
Looking to Christ also puts our productivity into perspective. We’re told to be world changers, which to the world looks, like doing these great deeds that help the world in some temporal way or win us recognition. But to be a world-changer in Christ is to realize that He is the one changing hearts and worlds and we can be His hands and feet in that by being faithful in what He’s called us to do. In our daily lives, that is making His name and His Gospel known so that hearts are changed by His word and He is the one glorified. It’s not in the one-time big acts of faith, but in our daily walk, and in the multiple conversations with others who are struggling with fears and doubts. It changes by daily bible reading, by prayers, and by the simple act of sharing the hope that we have with our classmates. Psalm 55:22 tells us to, “Cast your burden on the Lord, and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved.” When the world sees us standing firm in the midst of the cares and anxieties this world offers us, it causes them to stop and ask, “Why?” That’s when we have the privilege to show them who it is we look to and invite them to do the same in Christ alone.