There are benefits to believing and two things we can always do
Bad things happen. Part of existing is to experience the lows that come with living. We cannot hide from it.
With our global access to social content, we are confronted with bad things constantly. Whether we want to know or not, we are privy to the overwhelming burdens in the world and local community. This week alone, a dear friend received an unfortunate health diagnosis. At the same time, my local community was struggling with a senseless death, when a mother, allegedly provoked by her neighbor’s disturbing actions toward her children, died from a gun shot through the neighbor’s steel door. Then, seven people were shot last night in Richmond, Virginia, killing a student, and his father, on his high school graduation day.
Can you imagine that on top of all the ills that we hear about, bad things also happen within our extended families and our homes? If we focus too much on the bad times, we will surely lose perspective on our positions to be problem-solvers and burden-bearers. The Good News is that as followers of Christ (Believers) and recipients of God’s grace and mercy, we can carry other believers’ burdens. When bad things happen to them, we have an opportunity from Scripture to “Carry one another’s burdens; in this way, you will fulfill the law of Christ.” (Galatians 6:2 CSB)
Yes it is true. We have a two-step response to employ, where discernment is critical. First, we pray for the people and the situation(s) they find themselves in. The Message puts it this way: “Live creatively, friends. If someone falls into sin, forgivingly restore him, saving your critical comments for yourself. You might be needing forgiveness before the day’s out. Stoop down and reach out to those who are oppressed. Share their burdens, and so complete Christ’s law. If you think you are too good for that, you are badly deceived.”
Secondly, we ask God for direction and which burdens to carry. When things are bad, we cannot afford to make matters worse. We need to take the appropriate actions. Therefore, we must pray for the physical response to the problem with an assurance that anything we do is by the Spirit of the Lord.
When we are there for other Believers, we do God’s work. Scripture says, “By this, everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” (John 13:35 CSB) Our love for each other is a special way God shows us that we are never alone or without help, and it is a powerful benefit to a Jesus-following way of life.
Since bad times are a reality, feel free to use my prayer (below) as your own, as often as needed.
Father God, in the name of Jesus, I praise You for how You created us as relational beings. We need You, and we need others. While navigating this fallen world, You have already told us that we will have trials and troubles, and burdens for broad shoulders. But You said not to fear because You have overcome the world. You have graced us with the strength to take the load off of others. Please help us remain compassionate about the hard things that happen in life and give us the capacity to lighten the loads of others, prayerfully and practically, as Jesus did. May we love one another as You love us. Amen.
I hope you understand the hope that comes from our fellowship together. Even in bad times.
Thank you for reading and sharing. Please leave a testimony or comment below. Many blessings to you. Really,