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Streams in the Desert

Devotional For

August 17



      Cast Your Burdens Upon God
      
      "Look from the top" (Song of Solomon 4:8).
      
      Crushing weights give the Christian wings. It seems like a contradiction in terms, but it is a blessed truth. David out of some bitter experience cried: "Oh, that I had wings like a dove! Then would I fly away, and be at rest" (Ps. 55:6). But before he finished this meditation he seems to have realized that his wish for wings was a realizable one. For he says, "Cast thy burden upon Jehovah, and he will sustain thee."
      
      The word "burden" is translated in the Bible margin, "what he (Jehovah) hath given thee." The saints' burdens are God-given; they lead him to "wait upon Jehovah," and when that is done, in the magic of trust, the "burden" is metamorphosed into a pair of wings, and the weighted one "mounts up with wings as eagles. --Sunday School Times
      
      One day when walking down the street,
      On business bent, while thinking hard
      About the "hundred cares" which seemed
      Like thunder clouds about to break
      In torrents, Self-pity said to me:
      "You poor, poor thing, you have too much
      To do. Your life is far too hard.
      This heavy load will crush you soon."
      A swift response of sympathy
      Welled up within. The burning sun
      Seemed more intense. The dust and noise
      Of puffing motors flying past
      With rasping blast of blowing horn
      Incensed still more the whining nerves,
      The fabled last back-breaking straw
      To weary, troubled, fretting mind.
      "Ah, yes, 'twill break and crush my life;
      I cannot bear this constant strain
      Of endless, aggravating cares;
      They are too great for such as I."
      So thus my heart condoled itself,
      "Enjoying misery," when lo!
      A "still small voice" distinctly said,
      "Twas sent to lift you--not to crush."
      I saw at once my great mistake.
      My place was not beneath the load
      But on the top! God meant it not
      That I should carry it. He sent
      It here to carry me. Full well
      He knew my incapacity
      Before the plan was made. He saw
      A child of His in need of grace
      And power to serve; a puny twig
      Requiring sun and rain to grow;
      An undeveloped chrysalis;
      A weak soul lacking faith in God.
      He could not help but see all this
      And more. And then, with tender thought
      He placed it where it had to grow--
      Or die. To lie and cringe beneath
      One's load means death, but life and power
      Await all those who dare to rise above.
      Our burdens are our wings; on them
      We soar to higher realms of grace;
      Without them we must roam for aye
      On planes of undeveloped faith,
      (For faith grows but by exercise in circumstance impossible).
      
      Oh, paradox of Heaven. The load We think will crush was sent to lift us Up to God! Then, soul of mine, Climb up! for naught can e'er be crushed Save what is underneath the weight. How may we climb! By what ascent Shall we surmount the carping cares Of life! Within His word is found The key which opes His secret stairs; Alone with Christ, secluded there, We mount our loads, and rest in Him. --Miss Mary Butterfield

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