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“I’m going to put the weights down,” she announced — at last. I was already picturing spiking mine on the floor.

Monday through Friday, my friend Jennifer and I walk. We are doing three miles most mornings. Last week, we started using hand weights again. I hate them. While I do want muscular arms, I’d rather just wish them into existence. Jennifer insists that we do it through weights. (Hers are twice as heavy as mine.)

This morning, we had walked half a mile before I felt not-too-guilty about dropping the little pests. (Who am I kidding? it was probably only a fourth.) I LOVE the feeling when I lay them down! There’s a spring in my step, my pace picks up. Yes! I think to myself. That’s what I’m talking about!

After several laps, it was time to pick them back up. I may have made groaning noises. Carrying the weights slows me down. It makes me tired-er. I count the minutes until I can be free of them.

Jesus knew a thing or two about carrying weights. In Matthew 11:28, Jesus implored, “Come to me all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest,”(NIV). Though spoken hundreds of years ago, He is still inviting each of us to come and unburden our hearts and souls. With Him there is peace. With Him there is relief. With Him there is joy!

Countless times in the past, I have taken heavy loads to my Heavenly Father, even going to the altar at church, but then after a few laps of life, I find that I picked the burden right back up again lugging them with me every step. (It might have been a concern about my beloved or one of our children, a job, etc.) Each time it slowed me down. It made me tired. I’m learning with age that’s not a good workout.

It’s interesting that if I carry weights while walking, I will get stronger. Yet, when I continue to carry the heavy weights/burdens of the world on my own, I don’t get stronger … I only get weaker. I must go to my Maker, unloading heart, mind and soul. He is strong enough for the both of us.

What burden do you need to fully lay down at the feet of Jesus? Go ahead. Quit talking/thinking about it. Do it. He LOVES you! He ADORES you! He wants to be your burden-bearer!

There will be a cleansing exhale after the weight is released. Then an exhilarating inhale of freedom. It’s priceless!

Dawn Reed writes a weekly column for HD Media. She can be contacted at preacherswife7@yahoo.com.

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