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Carrying Rocks

What rocks are you carrying around without even knowing it?

At IHS this year we are working through this wonderful Lenten resource called Bless the Lent We Actually Have from author Kate Bowler. We were invited to listen to an episode of her podcast "Every Family has a Story" with special guest Julia Samuel. In the podcast, one thing they talked about was generational trauma and how we carry around with us trauma and pain passed down in our family.

In the interview, they described this as carrying around a bag of rocks that you didn't even realize what the rocks were, that they were there, and that you were carrying them. Imagine carrying around a bag of rocks all day without even realizing they were hiding out in your bag!

What rocks are you carrying around? These rocks don't have to be intergenerational trauma. Perhaps, you've realized there are hardships or challenges in your life that you inherited from your family, your parents, or grandparents. Perhaps you're carrying other rocks around and you didn't even realize how much they were weighing you down: insecurity, anxiety, depression, body issues or pain, illness, or other chronic issues. We can be trying to live our daily lives weighed down in ways we don't even realize. No wonder it feels like everything is a struggle!

Jesus tells us instead to take his yoke on us, because his burden is easy and light. God invites us to cast our cares on him, but how can we do that when we're just struggling to get by every day?

Seeing our life in the context not just of our own story, but of God's story and God's plan of salvation changes the way we see ourselves and the journey that we are on. We realize that we don't have to try to be perfect, that God blesses the imperfect and blesses us exactly where we are in our lives. God doesn't expect us to be super-people who can carry it all. He invites us to share the heavy load we carry with him, and that if we do he'll give us strength and peace we didn't realize we could have.

Lent can often seem like "one more thing" but it is meant to be an invitation to share our heavy bag of rocks with the God who knows what we are going through because he went through it, too. This Lent, how can you share that burden with Jesus?

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