We were looking for a rock.
Elle is my 6-year-old granddaughter and she’s become a rock collector. Yesterday we scouted around a tree to find rocks to add to her growing collection. She found a perfectly round rock and held it up in victory.
Elle had already filled my back pockets with rocks. She filled both of my hands. I didn’t have a place to put this large rock, so she pointed to my backpack. “Put it in there, okay?”
This morning I ran errands. My backpack cut into my shoulder. (I carry around a backpack rather than a purse. I’m so not girly.) I shifted it to the other shoulder. It didn’t take long for that arm to start hurting. I carried that backpack around for a long time — until it dawned on me.
I laughed at myself when I pulled out the huge round rock, shaking my head. I had carried around that rock far longer than I should have.
At some point, moving forward is taking a good look at the burden we have been carrying. That may seem obvious, but the reality is that a lot of us are still carrying it years later. There are a lot of things that keep us from looking at it.
One (and what we are looking at today) is that we are blaming the source of that burden.
He did it.
She did it.
This happened and that event did it.
That’s your story and your story matters, but we can keep the focus on blame for years and still be as stuck as the day it happened. Blame keeps the limelight on the person or thing that caused it, rather than the giant “rock” we are carrying around.
Pause the blame to name the pain
That thing happened. You can’t change it, but you can name it.
The pain I still carry is rejection.
The pain I still carry is insecurity.
The pain I still carry is feeling I have to be perfect/pretty/smart/witty/successful/a hard worker — (you fill in the blank) to be loved or accepted.
Acknowledge the price of the pain
Lord, I’ve been carrying around a rock of rejection. I’ve been so busy pointing to a circumstance or a person or even you, God, that I haven’t been able to move past it.
This burden has cut into my identity. It’s cut into my sense of self. It’s cut into my relationships. It’s cut into my view of who You are, God.
And I’m tired of carrying it around.
Release the pain
1. “Cast your burden on the Lord, and He shall sustain you; He shall never permit the righteous to be moved” (Psalm 55:22).
2. “Is this not the fast that I have chosen: To loose the bonds of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, to let the oppressed go free, and that you break every yoke?” (Isaiah 58:6).
3. “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light” (Matthew 11:28–30).
4. “For I, the Lord your God, will hold your right hand, saying to you, ‘Fear not, I will help you’” (Isaiah 41:13).The righteous cry out and the Lord hears. #livingfreetogether http://wp.me/p4jbdw-49r Click To Tweet
5. “The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears, and delivers them out of all their troubles” (Psalm 34:17).
So, God, here it is. This is my stuff. It might not be my fault, but I’m the one still carrying it around. I’ve been pointing to everything else but my own heart and I’m ready to put this thing down.
Not tomorrow. Not when things change. Not when people change.
Thank you for offering to carry it for me. I’m letting go. In Jesus’ powerful name, amen.
Day #19 of Moving Past What You Cannot Change
- Find a rock.
- Name the pain. Paint it on one side.
- Find the promise. Maybe it’s peace. Maybe it’s acceptance or unconditional love. Maybe it’s rest. Whatever it is, paint the promise in large letters on the other side of the rock. One side is a reminder of what God is carrying for you. The other side is who you are today because of His love.
Tonight at 7 p.m. we’ll have a rock painting party.
Bring your rock. Grab a bunch of friends and do it together. Post a pic online of your rock with the hashtag #livingfreetogether on Twitter or Facebook.
I’ll broadcast live at 7 p.m. CT on my Facebook ministry page. I’ll show you my rock and share a little of my story.
Post your comments in the Facebook page under the live broadcast. I’ll be reading every one of them! I look forward to seeing you there! ~ Suzie