Word of the Month

Unnecessary burdens

July 2015

During a stay in Africa on one occasion I made a notable experience. We were driving along a street in a small truck and saw an elderly woman carrying a heavy burden on her head. “The poor woman! Just look at how she has to toil,” we thought, and so we pulled over to offer her a ride. She gratefully accepted our offer and stepped up onto the cargo area. What happened next astonished me and really gave me pause for thought. The woman took a seat on the rear bench of the cargo area, but during the entire trip, she kept her burden balanced on her head.

When we reflect upon this behaviour a little, we realize that it is really not that unusual. God always seeks to help us. He offers to relieve us of burdens and liberate us of unnecessary loads and cares. He wants us to let go and put aside those things that make our path of faith and life more difficult—and often even depress us. And what do we do? Instead of casting all our cares upon Him, we keep on carrying them around with us. – After all, it’s about time others see what a hard time we are having! Instead of trusting God fully and completely, and relying on His help, we hold fast anxiously to our reservations. – Best not to hope for too much so that you don’t have to be disappointed later on!

Instead of forgiving our neighbour, we nurse our disappointments and the memory of the injustices we have suffered. – After all, the sympathy of others does us good! Instead of burying the past, we settle into a condition of self-pity. – Oh, just look at all the things I have had to endure!

And all the while, so many things might have been so much simpler and easier!

Food for thought from a divine service by the Chief Apostle