Words of Worth

Drop the Weight

April 29, 2011

It is that time of year again when many are concerned about dropping even the slightest excess weight so as to prepare for the summer season of wearing lighter and lesser clothing. How easy it is to pick up the weight along the way and yet how not so easy to shed it!

But sometimes we pick up weight during the year that has nothing to with physical baggage but everything to do with spiritual pounds that slow down the running of the race in which God has placed before us in His Word, and the race in which other faithful people have run before us.

Heb 12:1 reads, “Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, …”

A couple of Christmas seasons ago, my family and I rigged our own home theater experience and projected the movie, “UP”, on a large wall. While we each commented on a different aspect of the movie that stood out to us—dogs that talked, Russell the boy scout, Kevin the rare bird-what stood out to me the most was how Carl, the grumpy widower who is old and depressed and trying to live after the death of his wife, lugged his house around for almost the entire movie. And I remember yelling at Carl to “Let go, of the house! Just let go! You’ll run much faster!” Really, how can you escape the villains when you’re hauling a house on your escape route? Surely it was an encumbrance which hindered his escape and ability to run effectively. He had no idea how much the concern for the house was holding him back!

Sometimes, like Carl, we pick up the concerns of this world, what we will eat or drink or how we shall be clothed, or even a fondness for this world which distracts us from our total allegiance to God. Inordinate anxiety or care for the attachments of this present life, entangle us and weigh us down and pull like dead weight upon our soul and hold us back when we should be ascending upward and moving forward.

At one point in the movie, when many of the magical helium balloons had popped, Carl was faced with a life changing decision. The only way to make the house float again, was to get rid of all of his old possessions-everything that he and his wife shared together. After much thought and deliberation, Carl utters the most powerful quote of the movie: “It’s just a house!” It wasn’t until Carl finally let go of the attachments of this world, ridding the home of material possessions and letting go of the rope of his worldly concern to which he was tethered, that he finally breathed a sigh of lightheartedness that enabled him to run the rest of his race well. It was only then that he was free to pay attention to his relationship with Russell by forming a father-son bond.

Life is like a race with a definite beginning and ending. Along the way we will suffer loss and experience overwhelming obstacles and even incredible wins if we lay aside the encumbrances and entanglements of this world, and endure to finish well.

Why not lay aside the weight and the sin which does so easily beset you, and run that race unhindered right to the finish line? (SV)

P.S. Thank you to my niece, Danielle, who painted the picture used in today’s blog!

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