This time, images of friends, families, and kids flashed in my mind. In the past few weeks I have heard stories of struggle and pain and sickness and hopelessness that have just left my heart aching. The weight of the suffering gives moments of overwhelming sadness. I’ve cried a few tears for the people I love and the mountains they face.
We all had brushes with them, right? Hurting relationships. Self doubt. Scary diagnoses. Addictions. Fear. Loss. Things out of our control. Those words carry a lot of weight in our lives. I can almost feel the physical weighing down. The crazy thing is that I think we all carry it around with us. We all have our own special blend of hurts and burdens. We have complicated stories that twist and intersect with the stories of others.
Maybe there is something really beautiful in this mess. I have seen some of the most amazing moments of love and grace in the presence of struggles. Huddled under the burden of life, people join together, share the burden, lift it up and ease the tension. Even as they carry the pain and grief, backs are straightened. Strength is restored. Hope grows and grace permeates.
Is that what grace does? Carries us along when we have nothing left? I think so. I’ve been watching expectantly to see how God’s grace is working. He’s enabling us to be the grace-givers, the strength givers, the burden bearers. We have strength and hope to give because we have been given endless, bountiful, luxurious hope and strength.
When we join those in the huddle under the weight of this world, we have love and hope and life to offer. The abiding power of the risen Christ dwells in us and we carry Him under the weight of suffering to raise it up.
The Lord is near to the brokenhearted
and saves the crushed in spirit.