“Carry each other’s burdens and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.” Galatians 6:2
Storm watching is fascinating; at least from the safety of your own, cozy, safe home. I rather enjoy taking in a lightening show streaking across the sky, but I’ve never really understood those somewhat crazy enthusiasts who charge right out there and follow the path of a hurricane or get a front row view of a twister. Storms happen. Sometimes we are mere bystanders and choose to ignore out of fear or indifference, and sometimes we choose to get up close and personal…
I’ve never actually been out in a boat on stormy seas, clutching to a mast for dear life and wondering if I would even survive. I’m not going to count the time with the whole family in the catamaran on the lake. That’s just embarrassing. But figuratively, I think we can all identify with the storms of life, right? You can probably pinpoint several loved ones or acquaintances who are in the thick of it even today… sickness, heartache, broken relationships, grief—I know this year has been a doozey for our little circle. I may not be in that sinking boat on the perilous waters myself, but I’m definitely there on the shore—watching, praying, hoping, loving.
It’s good to have loved ones close by when we’re struggling to keep our heads above water. It’s good to see them there at the shore, cheering us on and holding us up in prayer. We are not designed to live life in solitude. We need our people. Earlier this week, we went to the movies and saw The Martian, where an astronaut gets accidentally left behind on Mars… not an ideal situation, the only person on a planet and all that. No community, no conversation, no support, no nothing. Can you imagine?
Back down to earth, we are called to love one another and sometimes that means carrying each other’s worries and fears and pain. How, oh how do we even attempt to do that when we’re hovering at the shore, watching these dears ones being battered by the elements? It’s no picnic and it can be heartbreaking business. Surely, we stand firm, hoping for a miracle, hands clasped, praying fervently, believing, simply being there where they can see we care deeply. It doesn’t take a degree or specialized training, friends, it merely requires us to LOVE.
A willing heart, an attitude of humility, our time and attention—we can do this! This is how we show we love and we care and we help carry. It’s a beautiful thing. And when WE are in that boat, we truly appreciate those “shore people” who are completely there for us, watching over us.
In the eye of the storm, God is our constant. He’s our Rock, Shelter, and Shield… He is also our Joy, Light, and Strength. He’s there in our darkest moments and still there when the sun breaks through and we find ourselves through the worst of it.
May the reminder of the preciousness and fragility of life not be lost on us.
The storms rage on. But sometimes there are periods of crystal clear, cool, calm waters, and we certainly need those delicious seasons of respite. Embrace those times to build up, enjoy, and grow at the shoreline…
Love one another. Carry each other burdens. Watch and pray through the storms.
Sooo preaching to myself!
Linking up with some fabulous encouragers! Check them out: