“I’m in a bad place,” I said to Kenn, my songwriting teacher, last Thursday. “Working on a song seems like a hard thing today.”
Not long before I had been in North Carolina visiting a friend. What happened to the peace and joy I felt there? My trip was to be a writing retreat I had decided, but God also turned it into a “righting retreat”–a time to set things right in my heart and soul.
Hadn’t God brought me to a place of feeling I was beside still waters and all was right with my soul? So what had happened since I returned?
“I challenge you,” Kenn said, “when you get home to sit down for 15 minutes even in the midst of this funk you’re in and write a song.”
At home I realized Satan was attacking me. He didn’t want me beside still waters experiencing rest for my soul. I’m sure he was miffed that while on my trip I spent time praising God for every bad thing in my life I could think of and for all the good God brought out of those difficult circumstances.
So I did what Kenn told me to do. With a pen and my journal, I sat in the recliner determined to write for 15 minutes.
A song came. And with the song came truth.
While on my trip, I had laid all my burdens down. When I came home I picked them up again and then some.
So the song was about laying my burdens down. In 15 minutes I wrote the first verse and the chorus. Later that day I wrote the second verse and the bridge. It amazed me since I rarely write a complete song in one day.
The next day I received an email devotion with the title, “Casting Your Cares Upon the Lord,” which included this verse:
“Cast your burden upon the LORD, and He shall sustain you.” Ps 55:22 (NKJV)
The day after that laying down our burdens was mentioned in another email. Today on the radio I heard a song by the Newsboys called “Million Pieces” that was about yes! laying our burdens down. A song we sang at church not long ago about the subject has also been playing in my mind.
Praise God for these reminders of this truth: when I feel weary and worried, it’s often because I’m carrying burdens He didn’t mean for me to carry.
The verses that have been coming to mind since I sat down to write (or rather “receive”) my song are Matthew 11:28-30:
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble of heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” (NIV)
Since God gave me my new song I’ve been singing it to myself over and over: “I’m laying my burdens down. I’m laying my burdens down. There’s rest for my soul, and peace can be found…” Once again I’ve given up on trying to control situations that seem out of my control and I’ve abandoned playing God in other people’s lives.
Rest is returning to my soul. What joy there is in releasing all my cares to Him and receiving once again the truth that He cares for me and is in control. I pray for grace not to pick those burdens up again.
What about you? Are you being weighed down by burdens? Listen closely and hear God whisper, “My child, lay them down.” Then do it.