A camel with a colorful saddle on the beach
Encouragement

The Burdens We Carry: Heart Checkup #3 from Psalm 37

by Katy Kauffman

“Do you want me to carry that for you?” my over-six-feet-tall friend asked.

“No, I got it,” my five-foot-four-inch self replied. The answer came out sharper than I intended. But he was a guy (and a strong one at that), and I wanted to prove I could handle this big box I was toting for Operation Christmas Child.

And then it hit me. Here we were, doing Christian service at our church for a good organization, and I wasn’t humble enough to accept my friend’s help. Suddenly, that box became even heavier, and he lifted my burden.

How often do we want to prove we can handle it? Whatever the “it” is. Our “it” might be paying for surprise bills, a challenge with our health, or being there for someone in their suffering. The “it” might be moving to a new town, starting a new job, or joining a new church. “It” can become doing daily life with grace, finding strength when we want to give up, or seeking shelter in a “storm.”

What “it” are you dealing with this week, and can you handle it? Even though I still struggle with wanting to do something myself to prove I can, I am coming to understand that accepting help doesn’t mean we are any less valuable or we can’t contribute good to the world. I think it means that we’re actually pretty smart. God wired us for relationships and for teamwork. The best team we can be on is “God and us.”

“Commit your way to the LORD, trust also in Him,
and He shall bring it to pass.”
(Psalm 37:5 NKJV*)

There’s an “it” in that verse! “He shall bring it to pass.” What “it”? Our way—our path, our plans, our future. He can handle it. He can also handle our burdens.

The little word “commit” in Psalm 37:5 gives me such joy because of its hidden meaning. That Hebrew word means to roll.1 The burdens we can’t carry ourselves, we can roll them over to our great God.2 He has the strength to lift them and carry them for us. He has the strength to carry us.

This metaphor of rolling might be a picture of when a camel would kneel so that a burden could be “rolled” onto its back.3 One of the kindest pictures in my mind is when a man kneels to talk to a child—he’s willing to get on eye level with the child and listen and respond.

God is willing to get on our eye level—our “heart level”—and listen to our concerns and carry our loads. But we have to roll them His way. We have to be willing to ask for help. I’d rather go through life asking the best Person I know for help than trying to prove I can do it. And I am ever so grateful for His help and the help of people He sends my way. Life is a team sport. So is ministry (Ephesians 4:11-12, Romans 12:3-8), and so is burden-bearing (Galatians 6:2).

The promise attached to Psalm 37:5 is one that only God can keep in His perfect way and in His perfect timing. If we roll our way to the LORD and trust Him, “He shall bring it to pass.” That whole phrase means “He’ll do it.”4 He’ll accomplish it.5 What a relief.

God can take care of our “it” and take care of us.

Heart Checkup #3:

How easily do we roll our burdens to God? How willing are we to trust Him with our concerns and plans, and follow His lead?

If we follow God’s lead instead of our own, we get what He can make out of a situation, and not just what we can do. In my own life, I have several “it’s” that I’ve rolled His way. I am eager to see what He does with them.

Discussion Questions:

Why do you think we resist rolling our burdens to God or someone else? What do you think can cure us of those things? Tell us in the comments.

*All Scripture verses are taken from the NKJV.

1. Larry Pierce, The Online Bible, CD-ROM (Winterbourne, Ontario: Larry Pierce, 2019), Psalm 37:5.

2. Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary, The Online Bible, CD-ROM (Winterbourne, Ontario: Larry Pierce, 2019), Psalm 37:5.

3. Adam Clark’s Commentary on the Bible, The Online Bible, CD-ROM (Winterbourne, Ontario: Larry Pierce, 2019), Psalm 37:5.

4. Larry Pierce, The Online Bible, CD-ROM (Winterbourne, Ontario: Larry Pierce, 2019), Psalm 37:5.

5. Ibid.

6 Comments

  • KO Orrand

    I think I hesitate to roll things over to God because I am thinking surely He wants me to do what I can on my own. If I don’t try-is that admitting I am just a failure? I feel better trying and failing than not trying at all. Then sometimes I think I have things in the wrong priority. What I think I need or want is not even important in God’s world so maybe I am just barking up the wrong tree. When those feelings get in my heart, I sit back and take a huge breath! I pray for wisdom, prioritizing prowess, patience, and clarity. God answers those prayers and helps me see some things are not issues at all. Now let’s work on the real issues together. Thanks for including your posts. Full of good insight and are blessings!

    • Lighthouse Bible Studies

      Thank you for sharing that, KO. I want to do what you did and pray for prowess, patience, and clarity. And lean on God and what He can do. Depend on His understanding.

      I have a similar tug of war in my heart like you mentioned. I want to try. I don’t want to fail. I think now, more than ever, I am slowing down long enough to ask God for help first and do what I know to do. With His help and guidance. My value or sense of worth doesn’t change if I need help. My identity is still intact. This is a good thing to remember. Thanks again for stopping here and commenting! ~Katy

  • Candyce Carden

    For me, I think it’s pride that keeps me from seeking or accepting help from others. I have to remind myself that God instructs us to carry each other’s burdens, and when I deny someone’s help, I’m also denying them the chance to serve God.

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