At some time or other we all have felt burdened by one thing or other – whether it be the loss of a loved one; uncertainty regarding a health related matter; trouble in relationships; money difficulties and the list could go on and on. And we know the weight that these burdens can cause us.
Over the last while I too have felt a burden but it’s a different burden. This burden is caused by the awareness of a certain sin in my life. This is not what we would call a gross sin but a more hidden sin – a sin that you would not realize that I was struggling with even if you knew me well. Now I always knew that I had this weakness or tendency (actually sin) but it seems in the last while that the Lord is peeling back its layers and revealing to me layer by layer the depth of it. As each layer is peeled away I am more and more humbled and sorrowful. The burden at times can feel like there is a hundred pound weight hanging around my neck, arms and feet and often my reaction is that I could never root this out yet knowing that He has promised to strengthen.
As I lay in bed the other night contemplating this, another thought came to mind. If this is the way I feel over one sin that the Lord is beginning to show me the sinfulness of (and I’m sure I don’t even know half of the magnitude of it) then what will it be like for the lost in eternity? To think of an eternity realizing the complete sinfulness of every single sin that was ever committed and to feel the burden of each one of those sins is unimaginable. And yet so much more inconceivable is the thought that the lost sinner will realize that the God who told them so many times in their lifetime that He was gracious and ready to forgive sins will forever turn a deaf ear to their cries. The depth and weight of this burden is something that we in our finite minds cannot begin to comprehend. And this thought made me weep. I wept out of thankfulness – thankfulness that the Lord is still dealing with me and then I wept for all those who I know and love who are continuing on in their sin week by week, ignoring the messages they hear. And so my weeping has turned to much prayer not only for forgiveness of my sin but also that the Lord would have mercy on the many who are going lost.