We are immersed in communication that can have us believe that if only we earned and spent enough money, ate the right things, exercised the right amount, learned the right emotional management techniques, mixed with the right people, engaged in ongoing learning and worked hard enough on our faith that ongoing happiness would be ours. The theme being, that if we tried hard enough, perfection would be within our reach. The beauty of our humanity is that no one is perfect and it is often through our imperfections that strength, compassion and character can grow. Rather like the Japanese art of Kintsugi, where broken cups are repaired with gold to create beauty and purpose, beauty and purpose can be created in our lives by accepting and growing through brokenness. Everyone has imperfections that can either become an excuse for inaction or something we accept as an integral part of who we are or where we. These imperfections are burdens we can grow through.
We often want to wish or pray our burdens away or have someone else carry them. There are times where this can happen and we can celebrate, but we also need to learn to grow through the burdens that life brings. Parents, family, friends and partners can want to rescue those they love from carrying burdens rather than guide and support the carrying and enable important growth to occur. Within the Bible we hear the encouragement of how to deal with our burdens. “Pick up your cross and follow Me.” Within this powerful statement we see God acknowledging that there will be tough stuff in our lives that we need to each learn to carry. Our lives will not be perfect, but we do not journey alone. By following Jesus and keeping our eyes firmly fixed on Him, we can grow in our journeying and find purpose as we carry our own individual crosses. As we approach Easter, we are reminded of the good news that Jesus is accompanying us on the journey, having already carried the Cross for each of us.