Tuesday: 2020 03 24

HOW TO HANDLE WHAT’S HANDLING YOU – Matthew 11:28 I read an article about how cod fish were shipped across the country at the turn of the century. The problem was keeping them fresh and tasty. Freezing and shipping the cod didn’t work; it was mushy and tasteless. A second approach was to send the fish alive across the county in large tanks, but when the fish were later prepared and cooked, same problem – mushy and tasteless. It was soon discovered that the natural enemy of the cod was the catfish. Problem solved, put catfish in with the cod during shipping; the catfish chased the cod constantly during the shipping process. The need to stay in motion, to be challenged, to be pushed – caused the cod to stay fresh. It may be a difficult truth, but we often need something to help us stay fresh, to remain strong, and focused in our walk with the Lord. In this little, simple, short verses, Jesus gives us clear teaching on what to do with our burdens. He teaches us How to Handle What’s Handling You. Let’s look into this verse for just a few minutes this evening and think on that thought: How To Handle What’s Handling You. I. TAKE YOUR BURDENS TO THE RIGHT PLACE A. Fretting Won’t Help You – Remember Mary and Martha; don’t worry about the incidentals of life – those things that seem so important for the immediate moment, but soon are forgotten. Mary choose the best thing; she sat at Jesus’s feet. B. Friends Won’t Help You – Job tried to tell his friends about his burdens, but he found that they were “physicians of no value”, Job 13:4. The problem with friends is that they will lie to you! They will allow you to wallow in self-pity and tell you that you have a right to do so. They may even sympathize with you, but they can’t really help you with the real burdens of life! Did you know that a real friend is someone who tells you the truth, even when it rips your heart out? (Proverbs. 27:6) C. Fleeing Won’t Help You – You will never be able to run away from the problems and trials of life. Remember Jonah! He fled from God’s call to preach in Nineveh, only to be swallowed by a whale. D. Fighting Won’t Help You – A lot of people try to live in denial and fight the very thing God sent to help them. I read the story of several men who attempted to push a car for a stranded driver. When the car was finally pushed out of the way, the men, puffing and catching their breath, declared that they were afraid the car wouldn’t make it up the little hill over which they were trying to push the car. The driver, without batting an eye, said: “Yea, I know; that’s why I never took my foot off the brake.” E. The Father Will Help You – Notice the invitation – “Come!” The Lord throws open the door to His throne room and invites all who are in need to come to Him for help, He is our Father and He is interested in helping us through the difficult passageways of life!

He is our shepherd and He will attend to every need. II. TRUST YOUR BURDENS TO THE RIGHT PROVISIONS A. Sometimes He Will Remove Your Burden – There are times when the Lord changes your situation in an instant, and removes your burden. Jesus often healed in an instant. B. Sometimes He Will Relieve Your Burden – There are times when the Lord will leave the burden on your shoulders, but He will lighten the burden a little bit. Remember the story of the blind man of Bethsaida? Jesus touched him to heal him; Jesus took him outside the town, use d spittle, and healed him with a second touch. Jesus sometimes leads us by steps in order to increase our faith.

C. Sometimes He Will Rest You In Your Burden – This is the most common aid we receive from Him. He gives us grace to carry the load we have been assigned. Paul suffered with a “thorn” in the flesh (2 Corinthians 12:7); yet, he receive the Lord’s promise: “…My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness…” (2 Corinthians 12:9). However the Lord decides to handle your situation, you can be sure that He will always do what is right for your life, Rom. 8:28. And, you can rest on His promise that He will meet your need, Phil. 4:19: “But my God shall supply all your need…. Whatever is handling you, God can handle. Why not bring it to Him? He knows how to handle what’s handling you!

Portions copied or inspired by Alan Carr: see www.sermonnotebook.org/sermons.htm.