Sometimes as a Mum I literally feel like a pack horse. Life after the pushchair has frequently found me loaded up with coats, bags, cuddly toys and whatever else needs to be carried. Not to mention being the go to receptacle for any snotty tissues and sweety wrappers that happen to be around.
However, it is the emotional burdens, the responsibilities, the weight of the world (or worse – the To Do list) on my shoulders sort of burdens that I find myself really struggling under. Add to that the general rubbish of the day that I often end up absorbing and you’ve got a problem. Or rather I have!
Last week I let my burdens crush me, or maybe my burdens just got so great that they did it all on their own! Anyway the end result was that I felt crushed and took to my bed – literally. To mix my metaphors it was as if I had been keeping up my flood defenses for as long as possible, dealing with the occasional breach, and generally coping,and then all of a sudden the waves were just too much for them. The waters rushed into my control centre and wreaked havoc. All my strategies for managing my depression, and the pressures of parenting and ministry (not to mention everyday life!) were rendered ineffective and I just had to wait for everything to dry out.
To a certain extent, now that I am ‘better’ it is a case of brush myself off and get on with it. Chemicals in my brain, and/or certain life factors happened and knocked me off my feet and now I am back up again.
BUT, as the flood waters recede I find some thoughts swirling around in a corner and I feel the need to explore them and pull them together rather than just letting them drain away. It may be that rather than just repair the damage, and build everything back up to the same spec I need to pause and look a bit deeper at what’s going on. I want to look back to my life raft from Serving without sinking (see June 2015 post and Comments from my Bookshelves); consider my practical pointers from What’s best next? (by Matt Perman) and explore further the teaching from Time for Everything? (by Matt Fuller, and our current VWs book).
How burdened should our lives be as those who have answered Jesus’ call:
“Come to me, all who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11: 28-30
What truths can we draw on, and what tools can we use to help us day by day to be lightly and rightly burdened?
To be continued….