“Relief From Burden” ( Matthew 11: 28, KJV ) by Carley Evans

“Come unto Me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”

I’ve not met any person in this life who is — at one point or another — not ‘heavy laden’ or in need of ‘rest.’ Every person ‘labours’ or has known the hard labour of a prisoner. Jesus essentially says, “Stop that work. Put that burden down.” More critically, He says, “Come here to Me. I give rest from work, relief from burden. I set you free.”

Unfortunately for us, we tend to pick up our burdens and workload even after we’ve set them down. Sometimes we try to wrestle them from Jesus as if He isn’t strong enough to carry them. We look rather pathetic about then — our weak wills working so diligently against His will.

We aren’t required to put our arms out like infants demanding to be picked up. Jesus happily looks forward to carrying us. Don’t fight. Don’t struggle. Put your arms down. Allow Jesus to lift you.

“Words In Season” (Proverbs 15: 23, ESV) by Carley Evans

One of the most difficult moments in a shared life is when someone else is hurting and you are seeking right and comforting words to speak. When and if you find those words, words which touch the other; you find joy. Your “word in season, how good it is!”

We’ve all experienced this. Someone close to us loses a child. Another deals with intractable pain. A husband commits adultery, abandoning the wife of his youth. A young adult commits suicide.

Every one of us has been in pain, and every one of us has sought the best words to speak to the other who is in pain.

Our “word in season, how good it is!”

Thank You, Lord that You promise to give us the right words.

“Let Your Love Outdo” (Galatians 6: 2, ESV) by Carley Evans

“Bear [carry, NIV] one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ,” writes Paul to the church in Galatia. The law of Christ is simply put to us by Jesus Himself when He says to His disciples, “This is My commandment, that you love one another as I love you. Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.” (John 15: 12 – 13)

“And as you wish that others would do to you, do so to them. If you love those who love you, what benefit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them… But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return, and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, for He is kind to the ungrateful and the evil. Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful.” (Luke 6: 31 – 33, 35 – 36)

“Let love be genuine…Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor.” (Romans 12: 9, 10) In other words, acclaim, esteem, applaud, admire, celebrate, commend, praise, respect, revere, value, and give credit to others.

“You shall love your neighbor as yourself. Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.” (Romans 13: 9 – 10)

Many of us enjoy competition. Let us, therefore, compete in this arena. Let us outdo one another in showing love!