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“Burdens Are Lifted At Calvary”

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There are days, weeks, months, even years that our burdens seem multiplied. I have felt this way much lately. I know that I am not alone in my struggle with the day-to-day of living…surviving.

A couple of weeks ago I found a choir from South Africa singing Dr. John Moore’s hymn, “Burdens Are Lifted At Calvary” and was reminded ever so sweetly of the Burden Bearer. Honestly, I sat down (on my heart’s knees, if you will) and sobbed. I had become over-burdened because I had forgotten to take them to Calvary — to my Savior — I have been trying to bear them all in my own strength.

Why do we allow grief or sickness or other hardships to rest wholly on ourselves and not immediately take them to Jesus? I am not sure that I know the answer to that question. Is it a lack of faith, being strong-willed, or arrogance? I think for me it can sometimes be a combination of all three. I will go back to lack of faith, but first I will tackle my strong will and arrogance.

To be strong-willed is, to me, saying, “I can do this by myself and I do not need your help.” It can certainly mean other things…even more positive things, but not for me. I dig my feet into the ground and dare someone to try and move me. I recall doing that to my Daddy when I was a teenager. He was angry at me for disobeying him and instead of facing him, I ran away from him. I went to a friend’s house to “hide” from him, yet he knew exactly where to find me.

He came to her house and literally dragged me out with my arm twisted around me…like a criminal. I dug my feet into her lawn, sat my posterior flat on the ground, and screamed with every bit of defiance I could find in my five foot body, “I hate you!!” I can only imagine the hurt that brought to my Daddy’s heart. He loved me and I was doing all I could do to prove otherwise.

Sadly, I do that very same thing with the Lord Jesus. I dig my feet in and say, “I’m going to do this my way,” or “I don’t need your help,” shaking a proverbial fist at Him. However, that is not what Jesus said I should do…or how I should act. In John 15:4, He tells me that I cannot bear fruit unless I abide in Him. So, when I choose to do it my way and not His, I render myself fruitless for Him.

“Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me.” (John 15:4)

Arrogance, on my part, simply holds hands with my strong-willed-ness. It comes along side me and says, “You don’t have to!” My little Miniature Schnauzer, Maggie Mae, takes this attitude with my husband from time-to-time. He will tell her to do something and she comes over and sits by me and looks at him with a defiant, “I don’t have to.” How true that is of me too!! I stand with my fists by my side and refuse to do what God wants me to do. I don’t eat how I should be eating, I don’t care for my body (His Temple) as I should, and so many other ways of maintaining my health. Paul taught that it is wrong for me to have this attitude:

“Now the deeds of the flesh are evident, which are: immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, envying, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these, of which I forewarn you, just as I have forewarned you, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.” (Galatians 5:19-21)

We don’t have to be ruled by our flesh, rather we are to put on the Lord Jesus and the fruits of that abiding are:

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit.” (Galatians 5:22-25)

Then that brings me to my lack of faith. I worry and fret…I don’t turn to Him immediately…then Jesus’ own words convict me:

“But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, will He not much more clothe you? You of little faith!” (Matthew 6:30)

Oh, how He knew that I would struggle in this area! Dr. John Moore penned this hymn after reading Pilgrim’s Progress. If you’ve not read it, I wholly recommend it. Dr. Moore understood the burdens we carry, and try to carry on our own. Jesus understood them far better than anyone ever could, as He bore the Cross of Calvary so that we would not have to.

While I have tried to tackle the sin issues we may have toward our responses to the day-to-day trials and burdens, whatever they be, I want to leave you with the knowledge that you can carry each burden and each sin to Calvary. Maybe you’ve never met the Savior at the foot of that old Cross, please don’t let today go by without repenting of your sins and believing on He who died to save you. There is always room there for those seeking and those offering up fresh burdens, whether you’ve been there before or not and to the Glory of God.

Burdens are lifted at Calvary
Days are filled with sorrow and care,
Hearts are lonely and drear;
Burdens are lifted at Calvary,
Jesus is very near.

Refrain:
Burdens are lifted at Calvary,
Calvary, Calvary;
Burdens are lifted at Calvary,
Jesus is very near.

Cast your care on Jesus today,
Leave your worry and fear;
Burdens are lifted at Calvary,
Jesus is very near.

Troubled soul, the Saviour can see
Ev’ry heartache and tear;
Burdens are lifted at Calvary,

“For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin. Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” (Hebrews 4:15-16)

“You younger men, likewise, be subject to your elders; and all of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, for GOD IS OPPOSED TO THE PROUD, BUT GIVES GRACE TO THE HUMBLE. Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time, casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you.” (1 Peter 5:5-7)

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