Carry each other’s burdens, and in thisGalatians 6:2 (NIV)
wayyou will fulfill the law of Christ.
Are you the one who tries to fix everything and everyone? So was I.
What I used to think was one of my greatest strengths was probably a detrimental weakness. I was Mrs. Fix-It. Finding the solution to everyone’s problems and taking on the emotional burden of loved one’s issues.
Maybe that’s you, too. I get it. You’re a concerned parent, a devoted friend, a loving spouse. So am I.
But not only is that Fix-It role a physically and emotionally draining one to take,
But beyond all that, I’ve finally realized God’s not asking us to fix everything!
But if my definition of what it means to carry each other’s burdens has been wrong all along, then what does it really mean? I think it boils down to three simple actions.
Maybe the simplest and most effective way we can help carry other’s burdens is to turn to the Supreme Burden Healer. God has the power and ability to lessen our loved one’s burdens, to fill them with the peace of the Holy Spirit, to guide them out of the fire, to soothe their hurts and calm their fears.
Pray for The Healer to heal. Pray within the silence of your soul, but maybe even pray aloud with your loved one. Praying aloud is something I’ve never been comfortable to do, but when people pray aloud with me, I always enjoy and appreciate the fellowship and peace it brings me.
Prayer is simple and powerful.
Us Fix-It types formulate the “fix” while we really need to listen. Listening goes beyond hearing the words. Listening requires truly absorbing the message and feeling the emotions. Empathizing.
One of the most frustrating experiences I have is when I don’t feel I’m being listened to – I describe it as feeling invisible. If you’ve chosen to carry your loved one’s burden, make sure you’re not making him or her feel invisible. The simple act of listening without judgement or interruption and showing you’re an active listener can lift their burden more than all the “Fixing” you can muster.
3. Be a Friend
Wallow with your loved one. Lament. Brainstorm. Cry. Hug.
Then get back to living. Move beyond the hurt and pain.
Feel the joy in the world again. Go shopping. Go to lunch. Have a fun outing doing what you enjoy – the casino, antiquing, thrifting, volunteering, the beach, a movie, theatre, or fancy dinner.
Get out and enjoy the beauty of fellowship. Pull your loved one out from within their own head and leave the drama or sorrow behind.
Let Go and Let God
We’ve all heard the term, “Let Go and Let God.” When it comes to carrying each other’s burdens, we need to take heed. It’s all beyond our control, so stop trying to control it.
These three simple techniques will be more effective and less taxing than all the worthless “fixing” you’ve been trying to do all along.