This week's memory verse:
"Praises be to the Lord, to God our Savior, who daily bears our burdens." -- Psalm 68:19
Burdens...baggage... Have you traveled on a plane lately? If you have, you know that they charge for baggage now. You might get away with one small carry on bag and a purse or briefcase, but anything you check costs you big time! Isn't this a great incentive to learn to pack light?
Well...we each have baggage that we carry around every day, and even if we don't fly...that baggage can be costly. Sometimes our baggage causes us to eat too much, or treat others badly, or make poor choices. What has happened to us in the past many times weighs us down and makes our lives harder than they have to be. It DOESN'T have to be that hard! You have a God who wants to help carry your baggage and make your life journey lighter, and he doesn't charge us an extra fee!
But...the privilege of having our God carry our burdens does take some effort on our part....it just doesn't magically go away. We have some work to do.
1 Thessalonians 4:3-7 says that we should be free from sexual promiscuity and immorality...we should not have a disorderly, unkempt life, but holy and beautiful - as beautiful on the inside as on the outside. We can do this by learning to control our bodies in a way that is honorable...learning to appreciate and give honor to our bodies.
For some of us, some of our baggage makes honoring our bodies a hard task. Some things might have happened in our past that makes it hard for us to appreciate the body that God gave us...but we don't have to do it alone...God is ready to help us! But we have to ask him for his help.
David, in 2 Samuel 11, didn't worry about God in the beginning...he did not go into war as he was supposed to, but stayed in Jerusalem and sent others to fight. Being at home...he let his lustful mind get the better of him, and he used his power to bring a married woman that he desired to himself. He knew this was wrong, but did it anyway.
When reading David's story, I get frustrated with him, because he KNEW it was wrong...but I see myself in David all the same. I give in to some of my desires every day! I have trouble sticking to a healthy eating plan because my body cries out for a milkshake...and I give in. My body tells me is too hot to walk...I am too tired to exercise...and I give in almost every time! This kind of behavior has consequences...weight gain instead of weight loss and an unhealthy lifestyle that carries its own consequences.
For whatever reason, baggage from my past seems to hold me back and I give in to selfish desires...I don't really understand why, but I realize that I need help! I pray each day for the strength and wisdom to make wise choices and to be able to deny the desires of my body. I ask God to help me plan my day in a healthy way and to be able to follow that plan. It doesn't just happen because I ask...I have to try!
This is the beginning of me trying to get rid of some my expensive baggage. Do you have extra bags of guilt and "stuff" from your past that you carry around with you, having expensive consequences? If so, you can also pray and ask God to help carry some of it, and help you get rid of some too. He promises that he will!