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When Your Load Is Heavy


Jesus will help you carry the load.


Several items that are not too heavy - such as a brick or a ten pound dumbbell and an automobile jack.


"Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest." Matthew 11:28 [NIV]

How strong are you? Do you think you are pretty strong? How many of you think you could pick up this brick? How about a dumbbell like this one? Well, you must be pretty strong then. How many of you think you could pick up a car? Oh, you don't think you could pick up a car? Well, I think you could if you had some help. Here is something that would help you. It is an automobile jack. If you put this jack underneath the car and pump the handle, you can easily lift a car that weighs over 3,000 pounds! Yes, with the help of a jack, you can lift a car, but you couldn't do it alone, could you?

Some of you have some pretty heavy burdens to carry in life. Perhaps you have a physical handicap that makes your life difficult. Or, perhaps your father has lost his job and your family is having financial difficulties. Maybe someone in your family has cancer or some other serious illness and you are worried about them. You may be having a hard time making passing grades in school. I don't know what the burdens are that you have in your life, but I do know that there are some that you just can't handle by yourself. Well, guess what? You don't have to!

Jesus said, "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest." There is no reason for you to struggle with burdens that are too heavy for you. God's Word is full of promises to help us in times of trouble. Here are just a few: "Don't be afraid, I am with you." (Gen.26:24) "I'll give you strength." (Psalm 28:7) "I'm with you in times of trouble." (Psalm 34:6) These words of encouragement are just what we need to face the hard times that may come our way.

Does that mean that if we will ask him, God will take all of our troubles away? No, but he will help us. In fact, some of our struggles may help us to grow and become stronger. They may also help us to learn to trust in Jesus. But when the load is too heavy, he will help us to carry it -- and there is no burden that is too heavy for Jesus.

Dear Father, we are thankful that when we struggle under the load of life's burdens, you are there to help us carry the load. In Jesus' name we pray. Amen.


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keys for kids


They’re Human Too

Aiden looked up somewhat fearfully when he heard the back door slam. He knew that sound meant his father had come into the house. Dad used to come home in a good mood, eager to talk with his family. But lately he had been so short-tempered and grumpy that Aiden didn't know what to expect. He was almost afraid to be around Dad now, and it made him sad. He felt as if he'd lost his father. Sighing, Aiden gathered his homework from the coffee table and headed to his bedroom. I'll get out of the way before Dad blows up at me, he thought. He could hear Mom and Dad talking in the kitchen. When his homework was finished, Aiden went to see if he could help his mom fix dinner. To his surprise, his parents were sitting at the kitchen table, holding hands! He could tell they had both been crying. He felt embarrassed and quickly turned to leave. Dad called him back. "Don't go, Aiden," he said. "Please sit down. I need to talk to you." Nervously, Aiden sat down. "I know I haven't been a very pleasant person to be around lately," said Dad, "and I'm really sorry. I want to ask you to forgive me." "Sure, Dad. Mom told me you were under a lot of pressure at work. It's okay." "Thanks, buddy, but the way I've been acting is not okay," said Dad. "Frustration at work is a poor excuse for my behavior, and I'm so sorry! I've asked Jesus to forgive me, and He has. Mom has too, and now I'm asking you to forgive me and to pray for me. With God's help, I'm going to do better. I want to be a real father to you again." With tears in his eyes, Aiden jumped up from his chair and hugged his dad. He was so happy to have Dad back again, and he would be glad to pray for him. I should have started doing that a long time ago, he thought. Doris J. Schuchard How About You? Do you expect your parents to be perfect? It's important to remember that they're human, just like you, and that they deal with their own problems and frustrations, some of which you might not even know about. When they act in ways you don't understand, be sure to pray for them. Even when everything seems to be going well, they still need your prayer and support. Pray for your parents regularly. Today's Key Verse: I pray that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, would give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him. (CSB) (Ephesians 1:17) Today's Key Thought: Parents need prayer

The Way

"I will not cry! I have to stay calm," Delaney told herself. They were here just a minute ago. While waiting with her sister and parents for a ride on the roller coaster at the fair, Delaney had gone to get a drink at a nearby water fountain. When she went back, her family had disappeared! Delaney walked up and down the long line of people waiting for rides, but her parents and sister weren't there. "Where are they?" Delaney muttered, choking back a sob. She quickly backtracked to the lunch counter where they had eaten--but her family wasn't anywhere in sight. What am I going to do? she wondered frantically. Suddenly Delaney remembered something. Her mom had told them that if they ever got separated to go to the big Ferris wheel and wait there. But where was the Ferris wheel? Delaney looked all around. Mom said we'd be able to see it from anywhere in the park, she thought. There it is! She hurried in the direction of the Ferris wheel way over on the other side of the park. Soon Delaney was sobbing in her mother's arms. "We looked all over for you," Mom told her. "I looked for you too," Delaney replied, "and then I remembered the Ferris wheel." Soon she felt better, and they all enjoyed the rest of the day. As Delaney and her family returned home from church the following day, Delaney was thoughtful. "This morning, Pastor Mike talked about people being lost," she said. "I know how that feels--it's scary! I'm so glad I didn't stay lost. I finally remembered that the Ferris wheel was the way to find you! But I didn't think about it until after I'd looked for you in lots of other places." "Like you said, being lost is scary," said Dad, "especially when we're lost in the way Pastor Mike talked about--being lost in sin." "But no one has to stay lost," Delaney said. "Jesus is the way for us to be saved. We can go to Him and not be lost anymore." "That's right," said Dad. "He is the only way to be saved from sin and have eternal life." Raelene E. Phillips How About You? Do you know the way to be saved and have eternal life? You may try lots of ways--like doing good deeds, going to church, or giving money. But nothing you do will save you from being lost in sin. You must simply trust Jesus to save you. Go to Him and trust Him as your Savior. Then you won't be lost anymore. (To learn more, click the "Good News!" button in the right column of this page.) Today's Key Verse: [Jesus said,] "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me." (NKJV) (John 14:6) Today's Key Thought: Jesus is the way

Help for the Hurting

Abe watched his brother Moe go into his room and slam the door behind him. Moe was in high school and lately had been acting super moody. Abe was confused by this, as his brother was usually so cheerful. He decided to talk to his grandfather about it. "I don't get it, Grandpa. Did I do something wrong? Moe has been avoiding me lately--or worse, yelling at me and calling me names!" "Has he been acting differently around others as well, or just you?" Grandpa asked. Abe shrugged. "I don't know--I haven't seen him talk to Mom or Dad much lately. And none of his friends have been over in a while. But Moe used to play video games with me almost every day, and now he mostly ignores me. I must have done something wrong to upset him, but I have no idea what I did!" He looked at his grandpa. "You're always watching those cop shows. Can you tell me what I did wrong?" Grandpa smiled. "Abe, I think I know why Moe is acting like this, and it's not your fault. Ever since I learned that he and Sara had broken up, I've noticed he hasn't been his usual self--though I didn't know it had gotten this bad. I think he might be feeling depressed, and that can look like many things--like anger, sadness, or laziness. But it isn't your fault." Abe perked up at this. "You mean, I didn't do anything wrong?" "No, you didn't. Broken relationships are painful, and Moe needs time to grieve. I think the best thing we can do for him is give him space and let him know we love him. By showing him we care about him, even when he ignores us or gets angry, we'll be reminding him that Jesus loves him and will help him through this. And since it sounds like Moe might be dealing with feelings of depression, we should also talk to your parents about getting him help." "And we should pray for him too, right?" Abe asked. Grandpa nodded. "Yes. Let's do that now." Alex Childs How About You? Do you know someone like Moe? Or maybe you're feeling down yourself. Painful circumstances can make people feel sad or angry for a long time.* But Jesus came to give us life, and we can remember the joy of His love and know He's with us even when we don't feel happy. If a friend needs encouragement, share Jesus' love with them by letting them know you care. * If you or someone you know is dealing with intense feelings of anger or sadness, tell a trusted adult so they can help. Today's Key Verse: Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep. (NKJV) (Romans 12:15) Today's Key Thought: Show love to those who are hurting

Other Side of the World

Essie couldn't believe it. "We're moving WHERE?" "This is so cool! I'm moving to AFRICA!" her older brother, Erik, shouted. "I can't believe this is happening!" her sister, Sadie, cried. "Will I have to wear one of those turbans on my head?" "Woo hoo!" their five-year-old brother, Davis, yelled as he ran in circles. "All right, kids, calm down," Dad said. "We don't know if we'll actually be moving yet. But your mom and I feel like the Lord may be leading us to be missionaries in Kenya, and we wanted to tell you now so we can all pray about it as a family." Mom nodded in agreement. "If this is where God wants us to go, then we'll go together." "But Africa?" Sadie whined. "It's, like, on the other side of the world. I won't know anyone!" "Hey, what am I--chopped liver?" Erik asked, crossing his arms. Essie grinned. "With a cherry on top." "Yuck!" Davis said with a silly face, making his family laugh. Dad cleared his throat to get everyone's attention. "Who remembers the Bible verse we've been memorizing?" Essie thought she knew. "Moses is talking to God and says something about God's presence." She looked at Erik. "Help me out here." "Something about not going somewhere if God wasn't going with them?" Erik offered. "Right," Dad said. "Let's say it together." "Exodus 33:15,"the family chorused. "'then Moses said to Him, "If your Presencedoes not go with us, do not send us up from here."'" "What do you think that means?" Mom asked. Calmer now, Sadie suggested, "I think it means we need to pray about this and trust Jesus to help us make the right decision so we know what to do." "And remember that no matter what, He'll always be with us," Essie added. "Exactly." Mom smiled. "I know this will be a big change for all of us if we end up going, but remember that if Jesus sends us, He'll be going with us. Just like He's been with us here in South Carolina, He'll be with us on the other side of the world." Kelly Hope How About You? Are you facing a big change in your life? Maybe your family will be moving soon or your parents are going through a divorce. Remember that Jesus loves you and cares about what you're going through. He promises to always be with you, no matter what. He will never leave you. Trust Him to help you through big changes in your life. Today's Key Verse: TheLordhimself goes before you and will be with you;he will never leave you nor forsake you. (NIV) (Deuteronomy 31:8) Today's Key Thought: Jesus is always with you