Monday, March 30, 2015

Our Focus: Follow

She Reads Truth

Is my focus each day - to follow? Or do I instead focus on trying to fix the difficult situation that I may be in, or the circumstance that a friend or family member is in? Focusing on, keeping our eyes on the heavy "cross" that we are called upon to bear. Using up all our energies, and finding ourselves exhausted and used up.

Such is often the case for me as my dear hubby and I find ourselves in a very difficult, perplexing, exhausting situation of caring for an elderly parent. Helping in the care of an elderly parent brings a whole different dynamic, for we become the parent. And how do we parent our parent? And how do we deal with all the behavior that surfaces when physical losses add and magnify weaknesses?

How do we cope and survive as we spend our energies to help another?

And I am thankful ... for reminders, and glimpses to truth that God gives us along our difficult journeys. For words that leap off a printed page, and light up truth in our hearts. For the words on my She Reads Truth App this past week ... 

If anyone wants to come with Me,
he must deny himself,
take up his cross, and 
Follow Me.
(Matthew 16:24)

And I wonder - could denying oneself, mean to give up control, to give up trying to make something work. To stop focusing on it; to just release it. For it has never been our responsibility to carry the weight of the world on our shoulders. 

But sometimes we try in our own strength, and then we find ourselves crumbling under the heavy load. We are not meant to carry the weight of the world, the weight of someone else's burdens, or even the weight of our own troubles. 

Of course, in this world we will always have burdens, situations that are beyond our control, and that can drain us of every ounce of strength and energy. They are our "cross", our particular set of difficult circumstances that we live with. Things that will not necessarily "go away", but that will stay with us. At least for a time or a season.

But our focus should not be our burden, our difficult circumstance. 

Our focus is on Jesus, to follow Jesus. 

Walk with Me, and work with Me -
watch how I do it.
Learn the unforced rhythms of grace.
I won't lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you.
Keep company with Me,
and you'll learn to live freely and lightly.
(From Matthew 11:28-30 MSG)

It is not in the carrying of and concentrating on our problems - that we will find our help and our rest, our solutions to the problems.

Our rest and our help 
comes from our following, 
our keeping our eyes on Jesus.

Each moment you can choose
to practice My Presence
or to practice the presence of problems.

"As we fix our eyes on Jesus, He will take on our heaviest burdens and use them to transform us to be more like Him, and others will see and witness His redemptive glory." (She Reads Truth)

Thank You, Lord, for burdens lifted, as I lift my eyes to You ...
Thank You for the listening ears of family from afar, sharing in our pain ...
Thank You for unexpected, amazing gifts from You as we lift our gaze ...
Thank You for carrying our burdens, and for transforming us as we follow ...


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