God’s promise is not that he will free us from what ails us—not yet, at least—, but that he will enable us to carry it for as long as he deems fit. God’s promise is not that he will remove that burden but that he will support us so that we have no need to fear that we will stumble or fall. With God’s support, we have no need to fear that we will undermine the work he intends to do or to fail to remain faithful to the end.
So much of what we experience in this life is so very heavy. So many of the burdens God calls us to carry are so tremendously weighty that they threaten to crush us to the dust. We bear the weight of our own sin and depravity, the shame of doing evil and the pain of failing to do good. We bear the weight of other people’s sin and depravity as they hurt and harm us, sometimes intentionally and sometimes purely inadvertently. We bear the weight of griefs and losses, of illnesses and sorrows, of unhealthy bodies and infirm minds, of broken relationships and shattered dreams. We all at times stagger under the weight of all we are made to bear upon our weak shoulders.
It is in such times that we turn to God for help, in such times that we call upon his precious promises to sustain and uplift us. Among the best of them is this: “Cast your burden on the LORD, and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved” (Psalm 55:22). When we are heavily burdened we are to take one specific action: cast. We are to throw or hurl or toss our burdens upon the Lord. We are to bring them to his attention and to plead with him for his help. And so we close our eyes and pray or we lift our eyes and cry out for his help, his assistance, his deliverance.
What we want, no doubt, is for God to take them from us.