One bag, two bags, three bags more…
I slipped my hands through the plastic holes, loading up the bags of groceries on my arms. Apparently, it’s a force within all women that compels us to put every single bag on our arms so we can get it in one trip.
The determination is strong with this one.
I can’t say how much it weighed, but do you ever have that “my eyes were bigger than my stomach” feeling? Yeah. Well, this was like that. The spirit is willing but the flesh is weak!
My arms felt the heavy load and after two steps I immediately regretted my decision. But I was too far to turn back now! I had to press on.
My pinky was purple. I must have put a sack of cans on that finger. All circulation had been cut off as the plastic tore into it. And it felt like it was ripping any tendons that might be connected. I was sure I would lose that one. But it was just the pinky. We can live without the pinky.
I looked down in distress. The bags high on my arms were starting to slice through the skin. Any minute I was certain blood would start pulsating from my forearms. But again, I was at least 5 steps from the vehicle. Can’t. Stop. Now.
My body, with the unproportioned weight, awkwardly made its way down the sidewalk. My feet felt a quickening in them. I tried to respond, feeling the desperate need to get to the door. Just to the door. Then the weight could be lifted and my burden would be gone! But that door felt so far away.
My arms sagged even further under the weight. The bags that were once on my forearms, mightily held up high, had slipped down to my wrists, now pressed against my sides.
Just then, I heard a bag start to rip. Oh no! Not the pickles! Don’t let it be the pickles!
Items started dropping out of the bag and hitting the concrete like hot cakes.
No. That’s a terrible analogy. More like bombs. Cans smacking the ground, bouncing here and there, denting their once beautiful round shape. A package of tiny tomatoes was next and the top popped opened, and it looked like little red bouncy balls rolling around before me. Another bag, this time on my left side, gave way and what seemed like a torpedo launching, the 2-liter of Dr Pepper smashed on the hard walkway. It must have hit just right, or wrong, whichever way you want to look at it, because there is nothing more volatile than a shaken-up Dr Pepper being launched on the unsuspecting ground. An explosion ensued, sprays of sweet cherry goodness hitting my legs, and soaking my shoes.
And then, I heard the crash.
The glass shattered.
The aroma of vinegar and dill filled my nostrils. Of course, it had to be the pickles!
In that moment, all my strength went out from me. There was not one ounce of endurance left. I was defeated. My arms were dead weight and I sank to the ground as my bags of groceries pulled me to the earth.
Useless spaghetti noodles.
We find Moses giving his final blessings to the Israelites before he is to go up unto the mountain to die. He reminds them of an important truth.
“The eternal God is thy refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms:” (Deuteronomy 33:27a)
Can you imagine the weight the Lord’s arms are able to bear? When we were younger, we would sing, “He’s got the whole world in His hands”. The world is a mighty big place, with an enormous, heavy weight of burdens. And yet, it says His arms are everlasting. He is our refuge! He alone has the strength to withstand the enemy! Only Jesus has the power to protect us! When we are weak, He is strong!
Are you feeling the weight of the world coming down on you? Maybe it’s stress from work, or the unbearable anxiety or depression that’s reared its ugly head in your life. Perhaps it’s worry about a child or family member. Or maybe you are inundated with constant news of destruction, degradation, and disfunction.
You can find rest in the arms of Jesus.
He alone went to the cross and all sin was laid on him to bear. And with his arms stretched wide, He gave it all for you!
Will you accept His offer to carry your load? You don’t have to do this all on your own. You can’t. We will fail without Jesus.
Surrender it all today.