24 Aug Crosses To Bear
“Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning.” Psalm 30:5b
All of us have probably heard the phrase, “That’s my cross to bear,” meaning one is carrying a heavy emotional/physical/situational burden. Mom’s diagnosis of dementia was hard to hear and harder to accept. Here is this amazingly independent, strong-willed, active and proud woman who is now unable to keep up her check book, make sound decisions, is making irrational statements and is daily accusing me of giving away or stealing her possessions. A heavy cross to bear – for her and for me.
Everyone has, has had, or will have crosses to bear. Crosses are heavy to carry. They weigh one down. They are irritating and can rub one raw to the bone. They can cause one to stumble and sometimes fall flat. They can seem never ending and become more burdensome with each passing day. Usually these heavy crosses, though painful, are temporary, but there are times when the situation does not change this side of heaven.
When I think of heavy crosses, I can envision Jesus carrying his physical cross through the streets of Jerusalem to the place of his crucifixion. Crowds jeering, soldiers demanding he pick up the pace and pushing him onward until he fell from the load and the pain. The physical cross wasn’t his only burden to carry that day. As he lumbered toward Golgotha, he also carried the weight of the sins of us all on his shoulders. Jesus knows all about suffering and feeling weighted down. He knows and cares about our crosses. He says, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28.
Mary Nash wrote after her husband’s death, “Come unto me and I will give you rest,” has kept me going so many times when my emotions wanted to just give in completely to despair and depression. I try to visualize myself being carried in the arms of Jesus. He is always there, urging me on, whispering in my ear to never give up, pulling me as close to Him as I am willing to come, all the time saying, ‘Come closer, my child; depend on Me completely, and I will see you through this, no matter what happens.’ Even when life comes at us like a hurricane, we know we have the hope of Jesus Christ.”
I struggled with mom’s diagnosis and changed behavior for months. And with her, I struggled with God and questioned his wisdom in allowing this to happen to us. It was when I finally gave Jesus my burden and the weight of my cross that I began to find peace and acceptance. Like Mary, my hope is in Jesus. I trust him to walk with Mom and me through this painful journey, and I know he will be with us to the end and beyond.