By Jacqi Ballough
“That’s really sad.” The magnitude of loss and an intense depth of compassion had just hit our son. His voice was quivering.
All three of us, mom, dad, and son, were sitting on his bed preparing for nighttime prayers and talking about the day. A moment before this tearful comment, he was joyfully chattering about his upcoming birthday, and then he realized a friend, who shared his exact birthday and was born within only a few hours of himself, had just lost his mother and would be without her this year. Instead of planning a party, his friend would be preparing for his mother’s celebration of life ceremony.
For over a year, we had been praying consistently for her cancer to be miraculously healed, for the drugs to eradicate it, for wisdom in the doctors, for peace in family, for strength. We were not close friends, but we were fellow believers whose paths crossed at homeschool events or birthday parties. She was a faithful servant to the Lord and to her family. I am certain she is in the arms of Jesus and her testimony of hope in Christ has drawn others to know Him and set their eyes on eternity. With heavy hearts, our prayers have now shifted to her husband and children left behind, for the pain of their grief.
The body of Christ has it burdens, many unexplained and seemingly unfair, but that is where we, as a body (the church) have to pray, trust, and pray some more.
John MacArther accurately stated, “that is precisely why the church is so important. It is our duty as believers to help bear one another’s burdens. When someone staggers, we help steady the load. If he is straining, we help bear the burden. And if he stumbles, we lift him up. Helping fellow believers carry the weight of their worldly troubles is one of the chief practical duties that ought to consume every Christian. Paul reminded the Galatians, ‘The whole law is fulfilled in one word: Love your neighbor as yourself.’ (Galatians 5:14)
How is that love best manifest? ‘Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.’ (Galatians 6:2)”*
Have you ever felt the want of healing for others (spiritually or physically) to the point it pains your heart? Have you ever been so consumed by compassion that the spirit within you groans?
Tears flowed from my eyes last night when the church collectively prayed for those needing miracles. Watching men, women, and children come forward for prayer was an outstanding act of worship for the entire body of Christ. With their brothers and sisters in Christ bearing their burdens, many faithfully asked their Mighty Savior to heal their wounds and wipe away their transgressions.
After the service my son asked, “Why were you crying?”
My only explanation: “I was bearing their burdens.”