Last week we hit the road and headed to Florida after selling our Minnesota home and packing a rental truck with all our belongings.

On Friday we arrived in the Sunshine State and are now somewhat settled in the house we are renting until we close on the purchase of our home next month.

The past five months have been quite a journey for us—some parts unexpected— and the evidence of God’s fingerprints on our lives has brought us to a place of deeper trust in His unfailing love as well as gratefulness and praise for all He is and has done for us. Through unexpected challenges, exciting new opportunities, disappointing setbacks, and answered prayers we have seen God come through each and every time.

Of all the miraculous ways God has steered us through the past months, the most profound and moving one for us has been the people who responded to God’s call to come alongside us during this transition.  From people who prayed for us, family who encouraged and helped us, a great realtor who went the extra mile for us, and more —Terese and I are aware that we could not have made it through this time on our own!

On the way to our new home in Florida my sister reminded me of this verse that someone recently shared with her:

“Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.”

Galatians 6:2

My sister told us that’s what Christ-followers do: Carry each other’s burdens.

My wife and I experienced others literally carrying our burdens as we remember —with thankfulness— all the people who brought heavy furniture and boxes from our house to the truck, as well as helping to pack and clean the house. We felt our burdens lifted during the 3-day road trip with my brother Tom, sister Terri, and brother-in-law Mike. Through long days of driving in both and stormy weather, Tom and Mike took turns driving the 26’ truck from Minnesota to Florida that held our earthly possessions.

They were carrying our burdens.

There are people around us carrying heavy burdens in life: illness, loss, unemployment, broken relationships, and more. Some of those burdens can feel like a heavy truckload.

The Good News is that there is relief available to all saddled by the heaviness of life. The first and only true source of hope and relief is Jesus Christ, who said,

“Come to me, all you who are tired and are carrying heavy loads. I will give you rest” Matthew 11:28 (NIRV)

With that stated, God has appointed us, the followers of Jesus Christ, to be the first responders of His grace to those who cry out to Him with their burdens. The only question that remains is whether or not we will rise to the call God has given us. We experienced the grace of God in the people who helped carry our burdens. Their service was not only a blessing to us— it was also an act of worship to God.

These past months have helped me realize again that there is nothing better than to be with other people who know, follow, and love Jesus Christ. Even as I remember with love all those who helped us, I pray that God will continually empower me to say “yes” when He calls me to help carry someone else’s burden.

Carrying each other’s burdens is an act of worship to God.

It’s what Christ followers do.

God bless you!

Chris Atkins