Open Hands

Sometimes I feel like I am my own worst enemy.
Well, maybe more specifically it’s my hand that is the trouble. You see, it has difficultly when it comes to surrendering my burdens. My heart may know that I need to allow God total access to my troubles but my hand keeps them tightly held in its grip. They’re my responsibly after all. If only I had made better choices. If only I had acted it differently. If only I had seen things more clearly. If only, If Only, IF ONLY… And as the if only’s resonate in my head, I hang on to my burdens and continue to carry them along, firmly grasped in my hand.
Fortunately, this is not how God intended any of us to live. There is a way out and it’s literally at our fingertips. In Psalm 81:6 (NLT) it says,
“Now I will take the load from your shoulders; I will free your hands from their heavy tasks.”
The Psalmist is speaking of God’s deliverance of the Israelites from slavery in this passage. We, too, have been delivered from a similar tyranny when we made the decision to follow Christ. We’ve been set free. Jesus unloaded that burden of sin from our shoulders and removed from us the heavy task of carrying our shame. He rescued us out of bondage to live in freedom. Galatians 5:1 tells us–
“It is for freedom that Christ has set you free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.”
This verse urges us to stand firm, to persevere, to persist in living free and never be burdened again by our fear, our shame, or our shortcomings.
One of my friends pointed out this week that if our hands are full of burdens there will be no room in them to receive blessing. I think this is something to consider. In the New International version of the Bible Psalm 68:19 tells us “God our Savior… daily bears our burdens.” but in the American King James it’s translated in a slightly different way—
“Blessed be the Lord, who daily loads us with benefits…”
Daily, He carries our burdens while daily loading us with His benefits. Empty your hands. Pry those fingers open if you need to. Let God take your burdens and get ready to receive all the blessings He’ll put in their place.

Make it personal—
What is that burdensome thing in your life you keep lugging around? Why are you still carrying it? Whether you think you deserve to carry it, or you just don’t know who you would be without it, let God take a turn and see what happens. Maybe the two of you can have a little chat and get to know one another a little better as He helps you out.
” . . .know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, so that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God.” Ephesians 3:19

2 Comments Add yours

  1. Heather Bock says:

    I love this quote: “if our hands are full of burdens there will be no room in them to receive blessing,” and I also love the translation that says God loads us with blessings. Isn’t that so true? We’ve been given so much!! Thank you for this.

    Heather Bock

  2. crickett says:

    This made me think of something Isobel Kuhn said in her book, In the Arena, that if we keep our fists tightly clenched holding something in our hands, God sometimes has to pry our hand open to take it from us when it’s not His best for us. She exhorted us to hold everything loosely, in the open palm of our hand. And I confess, I’m guilty of second-guessing my choices sometimes, and begin that If Only… conversation with myself. Thanks for this great encouragement today!

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