Courtney Vallejo explores the struggle many of us face with handing our burdens over to God.
I was lying in bed this morning thinking (honestly dreading) all the things I had on my to-do list. There is work to do with my father’s estate, and many of those projects have multiple steps. My health insurance is up for yearly review, which is another time-consuming task.
Also, I feel like school shopping may never end! I just bought a new backpack for my son, finally took the tags off, and later that afternoon heard from a mom whose son goes to our new school that the kids really need rolling backpacks because the book load is just too heavy. So back to the internet to buy yet another backpack and hope it gets here on time.
As I began to feel overwhelmed by the world, and it’s demands, I was reminded of the Lord’s promise to all of us, in Matthew 11:28-30, where Jesus says,
“Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart; and you will find rest for yourselves. For my yoke is easy, and my burden light.”
Does He really mean it? Does He mean I can give Him ALL my burdens, even the seemingly silly ones like back to school shopping? St. Edith Stein has a beautiful quote which I think answers the questions of our heart.
God is there in these moments of rest and can give us in a single instant exactly what we need. Then the rest of the day can take its course, under the same effort and strain, perhaps, but in peace. And when night comes, and you look back over the day and see how fragmentary everything has been, and how much you planned that has gone undone, and all the reasons you have to be embarrassed and ashamed: just take everything exactly as it is, put it in God’s hands and leave it with Him. Then you will be able to rest in Him — really rest — and start the next day as a new life.
If there is one thing I’ve learned in my spiritual journey, it’s that God is there for me, but I actually have to hand things over to Him. There are so many aspects of my life which I have a death grip over, clinging to fiercely to stay in control of them. So this school year I’m going to recommit (this is a recurring theme in my life) to handing everything over to God, even the messy things, even the ones I want to control, and even my to-do lists.
As I start my day off going over that list in my head, I want to ask God to guide me and show me what He really needs me to do. I want Him to help me avoid the things that don’t need to be done, things that are really just obstacles to my peace.
Who will join me in this? Who will commit to at least trying to remember to hand everything over to God? Let’s pray for each other as we start this new school year. No matter if your children are still home with you, in preschool, homeschooled, in traditional school, heading off to college, or have even moved into their own homes, let’s hand our lists over to God! Let’s ask Him to guide our paths and lead out efforts. Let’s remind ourselves that no matter what we have on our to-do list, getting to Heaven needs to be at the top of our list. Let’s edit our lists, ensuring everything on them helps us achieve the goal of Heaven. Let’s have the courage and strength to trust Him and hand our burdens over to Him.
Jesus, I trust in you. Jesus, I trust in you. Jesus, I trust in you.
Copyright 2021 Courtney Vallejo
Image copyright 2021 Courtney Vallejo. All rights reserved.
About the Author
Courtney Vallejo is a convert to the Catholic faith, who is currently living in Arizona. She and her husband, homeschool their three adopted children. She is the cofounder of AMomRevolution.com, whose mission is to inspire, encourage, and reclaim joy in motherhood. She also writes for her own blog, CourtneyVallejo.com. Courtney holds a Master's degree in Film Production and a California Multiple Subject Teaching Credential. Follow her Gluten Free/Dairy Free adventures on Instagram: @aglutenfreerevolution.