Continuing with our One Word Series, Pastor Chris shares this weeks word, “Shoulders.” I know, seems kind of a strange word but hang in there! Shoulders are actually pretty awesome. This weeks word is interesting because it can be both a noun and a verb. As a noun: the upper joints of the arm, the part of the body that connects the upper arm to the trunk and the neck. And as a verb: to place or bear on the shoulder, to assume the burden of responsibility or blame.
I personally have not had to go through the experience of shoulder surgery but I know a few people who have. And watching them go through that is quite the process. Going from pre-surgery PT, to the surgery itself and then to the post-surgery recovery. But the struggle and anguish I have seen loved ones go through with their shoulders is almost unbearable. Why is that? Well the shoulders are made up of very complex muscles, bones, ligaments, joints and tendons. It is a extremely complicated interwoven structure that God created for many functions. Mobility, and movement of the arms and upper torso. Rotation of limbs and almost 360* motion. But with also strength and stability for lifting, pushing and pulling. Our shoulders when healthy can hold quite a lot of weight.
And when I think about God and his strength and stability, I imagine Him with the greatest shoulders of all. His ability to shoulder whatever comes as us in life is absolutely amazing! Psalm 55:22 reminds us, “Pile your troubles on God’s shoulders — He’ll carry your load, He’ll help you out.” God’s shoulders are the most mobile and stable of all. That imagery of “Pile” is powerful. God is not just saying hand him a few things to hold in his hand. But load Him up! And in His generosity He is offering to carry our load, our troubles, our heaviness…sometimes us. We need the shoulders of Christ to help us and even carry us at times.
God’s shoulders are big enough to handle everything that have going on in our life. So we can let Him take our burdens, our bags of shame and guilt. Our packs of pain, depression and fear. We don’t have to carry them anymore. He is offering to hold them for us as we walk through life. He has already taken care of every single thing we think we need to haul around with us. Nothing is too heavy for Him!
And if we need Him to God will even scoop us up and affectionately put us on his shoulders, just like a strong loving, playful Dad does with His child. Sitting up that high, held by our Father God. And when we are up there, we are given a completely different perspective on everything that is going on around us. What are going through in life and the burdens that we have bee trying to carry on our own. Our Heavenly Father makes us feel light and alive, safe and free!
How can we depend on the shoulders of Jesus a lot more often?