Burdens, Burden

* The definition of burden, burdens

Burdens are usually a heavy load to be borne–physically, emotionally, or spiritually.

* Let burdens make you better, not bitter

The Egyptians tried to wear down the Hebrew people by forcing them into slavery and mistreating them.  Instead, the Hebrews multiplied and grew stronger.  When we are burdened or mistreated, we may feel defeated.  But our burdens can make us stronger and develop qualities in us that will prepare us for the future.  We cannot be over-comers without troubles to overcome.  Be true to God in the hard times because even the worst situations can make us better people. (NLT)

Exodus 1:12 – But the more the Egyptians oppressed them, the more quickly the Israelites multiplied!  The Egyptians soon became alarmed. . .

* Why God is able to bear our burdens

Sometimes our burdens seem more than we can bear, and we wonder how we can go on.  David stands at this bleak intersection of life’s road and meditates on the Lord, the great burden bearer.  God is able to lift us up because (1) his greatness is beyond discovery; (2) he does mighty acts for each generation; (3) he is full of glorious splendor and majesty; (4) he does awe-inspiring deeds; (5) he is righteous; (6) he is kind, merciful, patient, loving, and compassionate; (7) he rules over an everlasting Kingdom; (8) he is our source of all our daily needs; (9) he is righteous and kind in all his dealings; (10) he remains close to those who call on him; (11) he hears our cries and rescues us.  If you are bending under a burden and feel that you are about to fall, turn to God for help.  He is ready to lift you up and bear your burden.  (NLT)

Psalm 145:14 – The Lord helps the fallen and lifts up those bent beneath their loads.

* How Jesus frees people from burdens

A yoke is a heavy wooden harness that fits over the shoulders of an ox or oxen.  It is attached to a piece of equipment the oxen are to pull.  A person may be carrying heavy burdens of (1) sin, (2) excessive demands of religious leaders, (3) oppression and persecution, or (4) weariness in the search for God.

Jesus frees people from all these burdens.  The rest that Jesus promises is love, healing, and peace with God, not the end of all labor.  A relationship with God changes meaningless, wearisome toil into spiritual productivity and purpose. (NLT)

Matthew 11:28-30 – Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you.  Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle, and you will find rest for your souls.  For my yoke fits perfectly, and the burden I give you is light.”

* a burden too heavy to bear

Psalm 38:4 – My guilt overwhelms me—it is a burden too heavy to bear.

* Give your burden to the Lord

God wants us to give our burdens to him, but often we continue to bear them ourselves even when we say we are trusting in him.  Trust the same strength that sustains you to carry your cares also. (NLT)

Psalm 55:22 – Give your burdens to the Lord, and he will take care of you.  He will not permit the godly to slip and fall.

* To help ease the burden

Matthew 23:4 – [Jesus said] “They crush you with impossible religious demands and never lift a finger to help ease the burden.

* Not be a burden to anyone

Although Paul had the right to receive financial support from the people he taught, he supported himself as a tent-maker so that he wouldn’t be a burden to the new Thessalonian believers. (NLT)

1 Thessalonian 2:9 – Don’t you remember, dear brothers and sisters, how hard we worked among you?  Night and day we toiled to earn a living so that our expenses would not be a burden to anyone there as we preached God’s Good News among you.

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