The cool September air blew gently into the room as my husband opened the back door to leave for work. A lonely dread sat in my chest. I did not want him to go. I did not want to face the day alone—of being at home with the kids, teaching them their lessons, keeping them happy all afternoon, and longing for the quiet of post-bedtime, only to face it all again the next day.
“I am afraid,” I blurted out. “I can’t do it today.”
He looked at me with love and concern and came back into the room. Pulling me close to him, he prayed, “Dear Lord Jesus, be with Susanna today. Protect her from her fears. Help her to live her calling faithfully. Amen.”
Looking into my tear-filled eyes, he said, “You can do this. You are more than capable. I will be praying for you.”
That day was a little easier than previous ones. Grace helped me as I battled the demon of sloth that tried to suck all of the joy out of my beautiful life.
It took months, years of seeking to be joyful, of being faithful in my vocation, of confessing my dread of my daily work, when one day as I was planning the homeschool week, I felt joy. It was a deep, abiding joy I had not yet felt before.
Light streamed into the dark corners of my heart and showed me that Jesus had been there all along.
He had been waiting there with His joy.
Then I learned that when Jesus promises to make our burdens light, He does not mean that our burdens will be taken away (see Matthew 11:28-30). He means that what once seemed burdensome will no longer seem so.
The task that was once hard will be light.
When we suffer beside Him, the suffering we bear becomes light.
When we carry our burdens beside Him, our burdens become a joy.