Moving day was finally here. My daughter had organized everything she needed to do to have a successful move. She purchased the furniture, scheduled the deliveries, transferred the utilities and packed everything up. All she had to do on moving day was load everything, pick up her keys, get an internet modem and move in.
In preparation for her big day I scheduled the day off and loaded all the accessories we had purchased in the back seat and trunk of my car. On the day of the move I got up early and attended a 7:30 a.m. board meeting and dedicated the rest of the day to helping her move. Since most of the stuff was going to be delivered this was going to be a piece of cake.
After my board meeting, I stopped by the house to pick up a couple of chairs so we would have something to sit in while waiting for the furniture. I remembered she had no food or water so I made a last minute stop at Walgreens to pick up a case of water. When I arrived at the apartment complex, Addy was there excited and ready to move into her new place. I was beaming with pride because she her goal was now accomplished and she had the keys and the paperwork to prove it. Let the fun begin!
Our first task was to unload both of our cars. Since she is much smaller than I am I decided to grab the heavier things so she wouldn’t try to lift things that we too heavy for her. Out of concern for me she asked, “You want me to get that for you Mom? That looks too heavy for you.” Being the superwoman that I am, I assured her I was good. More than once she said, “Mom, that’s too heavy, put it down!” “You sure you got that Mom? Midday we got some assistance from her Dad and Stepdad to help with the things that required tools.
We were doing fine until we discovered the television had to be returned to the store for an exchange. When we arrived at the store I told her I would get it. She ran ahead to get a cart because it was obvious I was struggling. We handled the negotiation and loaded the new television back into the cart and back to the car. By this time we were hungry and tired but still had a few more stops to make to pick up groceries etcetera before we returned to her apartment.
While we were at the grocery store, we both realized that we were starting to run out of steam. It was after 10:00 p.m., the basket was getting full and our concern was how to get all of this stuff up to her second floor apartment including the television. Thank God my husband called me on his way back from a banquet and agreed to meet us at the apartment to carry the stuff in. I was relieved and grateful as was my daughter. An hour and a half later, everything was done, and at midnight we headed home.
Saturday morning I was moving a little bit slower and couldn’t even think about round two to finish up the small details like curtains and wall hangings. However I pressed on because I had to deliver more things. My husband loaded up the heavy item in my car for me. Before I left I remembered I needed his toolbox to hang the curtains. His toolbox is actually a tool bag that I thought weighed about ten pounds. When I picked up the bag and realized it weighed more like 50 pounds, I grunted and he quickly said, “Put that down.” Being the tough girl I am I assured him I had it. Once again I was offered help that I refused to acknowledge that I even needed when it was obvious that I was struggling.
As the day went on I couldn’t help but think about my first apartment after I graduated from college. I remembered that Mom drove 90 miles to assist me with my move. She loaded the Cadillac down with stuff including a desk my pastor had made for me. I remember being extremely grateful for my mother’s help. As my mother did for me, I was determined to do the same for my daughter. The Bible says we are to “Bear one another’s burdens, and thereby fulfill the law of Christ.” It was my job to help carry her burdens.
As I lay in the bed barely able to move Sunday morning, I had to consider what had caused me to be in the situation I was in. Obviously I was trying to carry things that were too heavy for me. When I sat down to read over my devotion for the day, I was not surprised to receive a message from God about trying to carry our burdens alone. Psalm 55:22 (ESV) put everything in perspective. “Cast your burden on the Lord, and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved.” Matthew 11:28-30 invites us to allow Jesus to carry our heavy burdens. “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 soul. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”
Funny thing as I remember my Mom and the desk, she had sense enough not to try to carry it up to my apartment but relied on my brother in-law and sister doing the heavy lifting. Lesson learned Lord! Whether it is my responsibility as a parent, a pastor’s wife, a coworker, a coach or an author, I need to quit trying to carry other’s burdens alone. Not only do I need to make sure I am not trying to do the heavy lifting on other’s burdens, I need to trust God to carry mine. If you find yourself in the same situation, either trying to carry your own burdens or someone else’s, listen to the voice that says, “Put it down!”
Janice R Love, Author
First Lady, Mom, Stepmom and Divorce Ministry Coach