When I was about twelve, the worship leader asked me if I wanted to play the drums for our church on Sundays. I was a spunky kid, with enough energy to light up a city for weeks. Playing the drums every week felt like a dream come true. I remember going to Sweetwater (a massive music store near my home town) and picking out a a full set and all the accessories I could think of. When I played along with the band, it was like a part of my soul resonated with every beat. I couldn’t get enough of it.
It wasn’t long before some of the more “traditional” minded members of our church got their feathers all ruffled. We tried accommodating them at first, but week after week I saw less and less people out there in the pews. Not long after, nearly half of our church was gone. What was a thrilling outlet for me to express myself had become a burden that I would carry for many years. I had split the church in half. I was the reason that everything fell apart.
When I was in college, I had come home for the summer and had an opportunity to talk with my old youth pastor about my burden. I’m not sure what had led us to the conversation, but I’m glad that we had it. My old youth pastor explained to me that there were many issues that the church was going through at the time. We knew that we needed to make some changes, and there were those that did not want to accept this. He told me, “If it wasn’t the drums, they would have complained about the piano, the stained glass windows being replaced, the new pews, or switching service times around. It’s not your fault, they made their choice.” I’m not sure why this was enough for me, but I could feel years of heaviness slip from off my shoulders. I was free. I can’t say that I don’t feel sad about what happened, but that burden no longer weighs on me.
I share this story, because I realize that for many of us, we are holding onto baggage that continues to bring us down. Maybe you have made some poor decisions as a youth; maybe you are struggling to overcome an addiction; or maybe someone has wrecked your world and left you picking up the pieces. You know better than anyone what that “burden” is that you are carrying. Sometimes it interferes with work and the home life. If this is speaking to you, then let me encourage you to take a stand. Do not let this burden continue to weigh heavy on you.
I can’t tell you that you don’t hold any fault for your baggage. I don’t know what you are carrying. However, I can tell you that you don’t need to carry it. No matter what we might believe, men are not islands. We need to reach out to others. Tell somebody what is going on. If you don’t think that you can tell a friend or family member, then work through it with a counselor, mentor, or spiritual leader. There aren’t a bunch of tips of strategies here. I just want you to know that if you are carrying something with you, you don’t need to. Thanks for your support and committing to a Rock Solid lifestyle.
P.S.- I will be taking the next two weeks off from writing posts to get some much needed rest and to spend time with my family during the holidays. My next post will go up on 01/11/2021. Catch you then!