SHELBY TOWNSHIP – One of my favorite places on our church property is the cross that stands in the back corner by the edge of the tree line. I find myself down by the cross time after time pouring my heart out to God. I can pull into the parking lot with no plans to go to the cross then suddenly feel an impression to go, sit and pray. There have been times when I was working in my office and felt overwhelmed, and I would grab my Bible and go sit at the cross. I have taken others to the cross with me to pray, confess, and offer forgiveness. It is truly a special place.
When we come to the foot of the cross, we remember what Jesus did for us. Jesus was perfect, holy, and sinless and left heaven to come to die for you and for me. We are so undeserving of this act of love, and yet He died such a horrible and grueling death so that we could live.
The Bible says in 2 Corinthians 5:21 (NIV), "God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God."
Jesus died so that we could live.
Why is it then that we carry around our burdens, cares, and frustrations? These weights hold us down from living the life Jesus intends us to live. He died on the cross so that we could surrender all those things to Him.
I like to think of it in this way:
When we sit down in a chair, what happens to our weight? It transfers, right? Our weight transfers from our bodies to the chair. The same happens at the foot of the cross. When we come to Jesus and we give Him our burdens, cares, and frustrations, this weight we have been carrying then transfers from us to Him. If we truly give it all to Jesus, we should feel the weight lift from our shoulders.
Jesus says in Matthew 11:30 (NIV), “For my yoke is easy and my burden is light."
I also love the Message version of this verse: “Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”
Who doesn’t want to live “freely and lightly?”
When we go to Jesus and remember what He has done for us, we can be confident that He will continue to help us carry the heavy loads we are faced with in life. However, He won’t just take it from us. We must surrender it all to Him and invite the Holy Spirit to have an active role in our lives. We can’t do this on our own!
Sometimes we try to give the burdens we carry to Jesus, but oftentimes we end up taking them back. We may take them back because we don’t really trust God to take care of them. Perhaps God hasn’t taken care of them in the way we wanted Him to, so we take them back to regain control of the situation to try to make it turn out the way we think it should. We might take our burdens back because we think God may have forgotten about them, so we step in to help Him out.
Whatever the case might be, by taking our burdens back from God we are essentially saying we know more about the situation than God does. We truly do not believe that He is in control, and we certainly don’t trust that He is going to work things out for good. So, we continue to stress, strive, and allow these burdens to steal our joy.
This is not the life Jesus died for us to live.
Today, I encourage you to sit at the foot of the cross and remember the price Jesus paid for you. Are you living a life of freedom and victory? Or are you still bound by the strongholds and sin that Jesus gave His life for? Take time to go before God and confess where you have been carrying the load that Jesus wants to carry for you. Then, visualize placing those things into His nail scarred hands and walk away. He wants to take them from you today, and He wants you to leave them there. It is time to live freely and lightly!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Karen is married to Scott Blanchard, pastor of Lakepointe Church, and moved from Florida to Michigan in the summer of 2009 to plant Lakepointe Church in Shelby Township. She enjoys mentoring and discipling women and also leads women’s life groups through her church. She is passionate about helping women find their purpose in who God created them to be. She is on staff at Lakepointe Church and loves being part of what God is doing in the Metro Detroit area!