It doesn’t matter how long you have been a Christian; there will be times that life feels too heavy to bear. Either the weight of sin has crushed you, or the circumstances that you find yourself in have become too great of a burden for you to stand up under them. Many of us stretch ourselves to the brink of a collapsing point, hoping that somehow we are going to pull through. But let me encourage you that collapse isn’t always a bad thing—as long as you have someone there to catch you when you do.
A Picture of Friendship
One of the greatest friends ever written into a work of literature was Sam from The Lord of the Rings. Even if you are not familiar with the story, it’s easy to see what kind of friend the character of Sam modeled. You see, Frodo was an unfortunate fellow burdened by a great burden. He was given the task of carrying a ring that had been fashioned with an evil intent. His journey was lengthy and it covered a large distance, and there were many life-threatening obstacles along the way. During every peril that Frodo faced, the major strength that he possessed was his friendship with Sam. When everyone stayed behind, Sam went with Frodo. When everyone else was no where in sight, Sam was right there.
Proverbs tells us about a friend that sounds a lot like Sam. Proverbs 17:17 says “A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.”
If you are facing adversity today, it’s not a bad idea to go to a friend for help. But though earthly friends and family are great, I’m really talking about a friend who truly does love at all times.
In John 15:15, Jesus says something that we should never forget. He says, “No longer do I call you slaves, for the slave does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I have heard from My Father I have made known to you.”
When Jesus is your friend, you know things you didn’t know before. One thing that is revealed to us in Christ is the love of God—His redeeming grace. But we cannot understand the love and grace of God without first knowing Him. You can know a lot about someone without being friends with them, but to truly be in close friendship with someone you have to know them for who they are.
Press on to Know the Lord
Hosea 6:3 says, “So let us know, let us press on to know the Lord. His going forth is as certain as the dawn; And He will come to us like the rain, Like the spring rain watering the earth.”
When you begin to press on to know the Lord, you enter into a friendship that is deeper and greater than any you have ever experienced. When the weight presses down on you, you press on. You press on to know Him. And if you feel like you can’t go any further, there is nothing wrong with collapsing in His arms.
The ring that Frodo carried wore him down. It ate at him day after day, and it grieved and tasked him emotionally and physically. Then, at a pivotal moment in the journey, he felt the weight of the burden overtake him, and he collapsed—unable to go any further. But as I have stated, Frodo was not walking alone. When Frodo had no strength left, Sam became his strength. Sam picked up his friend, and he lay him over his shoulders, and he continued the journey.
You Have a Friend in Jesus
You have a friend in Jesus. Though Sam is a picture, Jesus is a person. When you collapse onto Him, He lifts you up and places you on His shoulders, and He does the walking Himself. If your burden is past sin, a present mistake, or a situation that life has hit you with, Jesus is ready to carry those burdens for you. When He gave His life on the cross, the weight of our sin and our pain fell on His shoulders. He bore those burdens to the grave, and then He rose again, defeating sin and death and making it possible for us to walk in fulness of life. Press on to know Him, because He is the friend who truly loves at all times.