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Sunday, October 20, 2013

"I can't carry it for you...but I can carry you!"

Samwise Gamgee, always the loyal, faithful friend, told his exhausted and over-tried companion Frodo Baggins, regarding the trial placed on him, “I can’t carry it for you. But I can carry you.”

There is the literal carrying, and on rare occasions, we get to do that. Think of Forrest and Bubba. But it’s the figurative we all can relate to.

U2 camped on it in their song One—obligation or privilege? Option or responsibility? It’s a very real, rather tumultuous, utterly committed picture of relationship. We get to carry each other, carry each other.

Today someone I love is hurting. Waiting. Wondering. How can I carry her?

I can’t relieve the burden for her. I can’t carry it for her. Can I lessen her other life obligations somehow? Not easily, and not always a good approach. Busyness, neededness, regularity, consistency are often a means of coping in hardship.

I can listen, yes, if that’s what she needs. The offer stands. I’m here if needed. But what more?

Not too long ago, in a heart-to-heart email exchange, a friend told me of how she had carried another in intense hardship. Her very close friend was battling cancer. Part of the fight included a double mastectomy—a life-saving necessity. But that didn’t end her battle. She still had to face surgical recovery and further treatment. Staying alive moment by moment was her focus. And so my friend took the mourning of the physical loss upon herself. While the one in ongoing trial could not stop to mourn her own loss, her friend could. Our mutual friend couldn’t carry the trial for her; but it was absolutely appropriate that the loss should be mourned, and so she carried that portion for her. In a way, I think that is like carrying her. “Let me take this part as you carry on with the urgent at present.”

I don’t know that I would have thought specifically to do that. I think that kind of heart prompting comes from a true concern for the other person—a closeness that lets the unspoken need be recognized—and from a source outside ourselves.


Kimberly said...

Hi, Rebecca. :)

A friend posted a link to this on Facebook. So glad she did.

First, I have to say, the Lord has used these movies, The Lord of the Rings trilogy, to speak to my heart before, too. Love how He can speak anytime, anywhere, through anything He wants to. :)

And then this...I love how this applies to us carrying others, in whatever way He reveals in each specific case. I know I have been feeling convicted recently about upping my prayer for others - carrying their burdens in prayer as if they were my own, which would certainly cause me to pray frequently and with fervency.

Blessings to you as you seek Him on how to carry your friend. I know she is thankful to have people in her life who will seek Him on her behalf.

--Rebecca said...

Thank you, Kimberly, for visiting, reading, and commenting.
Yes, praying, praying, always praying. He keeps me in prayer. Thankfully, my friend knows him too, and she has most certainly carried me in prayer as well.

I'm amazed at how God uses movies, music, literature, all our human art to convey the deep longings and truths of reality. He is the greatest Artist of all. It was in part the art in him, of course second to his grace, which drew me to him so personally, so intimately. All good works of art also seem to have the very themes in them he weaves into our lives, our needs, his solution.