I didn’t want to let go.
When I bought my hiking backpack, the salesman had shown me how to put it on and take it off. He said when it was full I wanted to loosen my straps and let it fall to the ground, and he stressed that the pack was strong enough to take it.
However, when the pack was full of my stuff, I didn’t want to let those things fall to the ground. I started to let the pack slip from my shoulders, trying to let it fall gently. My husband, who stood next to me and is much taller, reached over and grabbed the handle, lifting it from my shoulders.
What a wonderful picture of what the Lord does for us! Some of the things we hang onto have weighed us down. We have fretted over them, dwelt on them, and let them steal our peace. But when we begin to let these things slide from our shoulders, the Lord takes them for us so we can be free of their weight.
Some things I’ve learned about the process of letting things go:
Pour out your heart to the Lord. Some things are hard to let go of because of the feelings associated with them. I kept things bottled up for years. First, I started seeing a Christian counselor, who helped me sort things out. During that time, I began journaling my feelings on paper and giving them to the Lord.
Give it over. When I give things over, I physically lift my hands as if I’m lifting the issue up to the Lord. I tell him that this issue is His burden now and not mine. I tell him that I am placing it in his hands and I am letting go of it. I then let my hands turn over as if I am letting the situation fall out of my hands and into his.
If the situation involves another person, I acknowledge that God knows what this person needs more than I do, and I place them in His hands. I choose to forgive them. Then I ask the Lord to come in and heal the hurts in my heart.
Choose to trust the Lord (Proverbs 3:5). Whenever thoughts of this issue come up, I give it over to God once again. I thank Him that He is working in the situation, even if I can’t see it. I say out loud that I am choosing to trust Him.
Just as when we’re learning anything new, this is a process. At first, it was difficult for me to give things over, but once I started, it became easier. When I have a difficult time, I will ask someone to stand with me in prayer.
When my husband grabbed that pack and lifted it from my shoulders, I felt a release of the weight and of the worry about hurting anything in the pack. The same thing happens when we give things over to the Lord. We’re free of the burden, and of the worry. We can walk free, knowing that the Lord loves us and is carrying those burdens. We don’t have to carry them anymore.
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