“Sometimes your heaviest cross to bear is your greatest blessing.”
These words were unexpected. I was talking with my priest about an inner struggle I was experiencing, and the pain and frustration I was feeling. Although I prayed for The Holy Spirit to heal me and work through the situation, I kept failing miserably over and over again.
My impatience and selfishness definitely called for a miracle, however, I just wanted to wish the whole experience away and not have to deal with it or carry it anymore.
I looked at Fr. Jeb and said, “I guess it’s just my cross to bear.” And then I expected him to wallow in my situation with me and tell me how happy he was that I was hanging in there. I wanted a pat on the back.
What he said to me jolted my heart and thought process. “Sometimes your heaviest cross to bear is your greatest blessing.”
How could this be? What did he mean? How could he think that my situation was a blessing at all? I was being stifled, and felt trapped, like I was in prison. How could this troubling situation be a blessing?
Fr. Jeb prayed over me and I felt comforted, but I felt a little confused as I left his office.
Over the next few weeks, his words kept coming back to me. I was starting to realize that God’s most wonderful blessings are not always what the world would see as blessings. His most generous blessings are sometimes the crosses to bear that we can not work through ourselves. Those crosses that we finally choose to accept, and when we realize that we can’t continue carrying them on our own, we finally throw ourselves at the feet of Jesus, and offer our struggles to Him. We learn to join our suffering with the suffering of The Cross.
In that way, we become one with Him.
I also found that once I accepted my cross, The Holy Spirit started changing me and working on my weaknesses. Although I still fall short, I see His work being done in my spirit and soul. And THAT is the biggest blessing!
What is that heavy burden that you are carrying? What is it that is hindering your spiritual growth and relationship with Jesus?
Is it financial? Are you out of answers? Do you feel hopeless because you don’t know where to turn?
Is your marriage struggling? Is your heart breaking because you yearn for a holy and happy relationship with your spouse? Do you even think a happy and joyful marriage or relationship is possible?
Are you living a lie, and hiding abuse? Physical, emotional, or verbal?
Do you have an addiction that is overwhelming you and the lives of those around you?
Are you holding on to painful and debilitating memories from your past? Atrocities that you endured as a child and/or through your life?
Are you overcome with the pain of having an abortion or participating in abortion?
Maybe you are sorrowful due to not being able to conceive the child you so desperately want?
Are you suffering through disease, depression, or incapacitating pain?
Are you lonely and living in despair?
Do you feel trapped…maybe a job that you feel is going nowhere? Maybe a family situation? Or just feeling trapped in your day to day life?
Remember, your heaviest cross, can be your greatest blessing. Give your whole heart and your burdens to The Lord. Ask The Holy Spirit to fill you with His mercy, love and wisdom. Ask Him to guide you and teach you what you need to know.
And then listen for His answer.
He will soften your heart and let you know the changes to be made. Align yourself to Him in all the ways you know; offer Him the best of you.
And when you get to the point of knowing that it is impossible to continue carrying that burden on your own, offer your struggle and suffering to the Lord. For He wants ALL of you…He loves you that much. And He wholly understands the blessings that come with the heaviness of The Cross.
May God bless you and fill you with His Holy Presence.
8 We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; 9 persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; 10 always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be made visible in our bodies. 11 For while we live, we are always being given up to death for Jesus’ sake, so that the life of Jesus may be made visible in our mortal flesh. 12 So death is at work in us, but life in you. 2 Corinthians 4:8-12
For the Spirit Himself giveth testimony to our spirit that we are the sons of God. And if sons, heirs also; heirs indeed of God and joint heirs with Christ: yet so, if we suffer with Him, that we may be also glorified with Him. For I reckon that the sufferings of this time are not worthy to be compared with the glory to come that shall be revealed in us. Romans 8:16-18