Many years ago I was facing some great challenges, it seemed that daily something new would come my way to buffet and challenge me. One day a seemingly small thing happened, but it was the last straw for me. I don’t know if you have ever been there, but the pressure was so great that I felt I could not take one more thing…and then one more thing came.
I shared my challenge with a friend and said to her ‘I need just one thing off me.’ The next day she sowed a seed into my life that took that one thing off me. It didn’t change all the challenges but it caused the pressure to be released and I was able to face and overcome the remainder of the challenges.
Several years after that a series of storms came through my city. It was a horrible line of storms and it did a great deal of damage on my property. If that wasn’t bad enough, my power was out for days and I lost all the food I had in my refrigerator as well as my freezer, which is usually well stock for winter. The cost of the damage in the yard as well as the loss of supplies was great. After days of no heat, being unable to get out get supplies and very little food in the house, I was weary. When I could get out, I drove to town to run some errands and grab some supplies.
As I drove to do my errands I was feeling heavy, so I turned on some music and began to worship God. I ran a couple errands and then I stopped at the post office and grabbed our mail. It is not something I usually do but for some reason I sat in my vehicle and opened the mail. Most was ministry mail, letters, donations and such. Then I opened a letter from one of our partners, it had a note on it that said ‘personal gift for Kim, not for the ministry.’ Tears began to fall. Then I opened another that had a note that said ‘the Lord spoke to me to send you this to help with the damage from the storm.’ I sat in the parking lot at the post office and cried. God’s goodness simply overwhelmed me. But not only His goodness but the goodness of His people.
I realized as I sat there that although these did not remove all the challenges or take care of the loss, that it absolutely took the pressure off. It was like a pressure valve released a great deal of the weight I had been feeling…now I know, we don’t carry the weight, we give it to God. But sometimes, when you are in the midst of it and weary from the battle, even though you know God will turn it for your good it is not always easy to handle. I’m simply being real.
This was the Body of Christ, my family, who took what they had and shared it with me, I was blessed beyond words.
I once read a scripture in 2 Corinthians 8:2 in the Message Bible that said ‘The pressure triggered something totally unexpected: an outpouring of pure and generous gifts.’ That was what I held in my hand, pure and generous gifts straight from the heart of God through His people.
I have always loved in the New Testament where it talks about God’s people who had all things in common. If one had something the other needed, they gave it. They shared all things. I believe as a society, we have sometimes faced such hard times that we are reluctant to give because we are afraid we won’t have enough for ourselves but that is opposite the heart of God.
Then there are other times where a city faces disaster and everyone who possibly can comes along side of them and helps them bear the burden. This is what the Body of Christ is all about. We are blessed to be a blessing. Sometimes we are the ones being blessed and sometimes it is our time to bless others. It is in giving that we receive.
As I sat in the parking lot that day, God reminded me of something; just before all those storms hit, God had me sow several seeds, large seeds. Now, I am so glad I did, it was as if I had prepared for the challenge before it hit, I had my seed in the ground before the storms hit. I did not have to try to sow in the midst of the loss, I had already sown.
One of the very best seeds you will ever sow is to take the pressure off of someone who is facing challenges. I have tried to do that quite often. If I can meet a need, I meet it. Seeing the pressure come off that person is more than enough for me.
In my own life, I look for ways to be a blessing. It may be allowing someone who appears to be in a rush to go ahead of me in the grocery line. It may be as simple as putting up a buggy for someone. Or it may be more, it may require me to give of my supply to help someone else – whatever it is, I know if I am taking pressure off someone else when the day comes that I feel I have too much pressure, God will remember my seed and the pressure will not be able to remain on me. Oh my! Our God is so faithful, today I thank Him for His faithfulness and for His faithful people. Keep your ears open…keep your eyes open….and be a blessing to someone…listen for the spirit of God, leading you to take the weight off someone today! You will be blessed as you do.