If you've been reading this blog long, you know that I love the visual images presented in the scriptures. One of my favorite pictures is painted by Isaiah in Isaiah 5:18 (also 2 Ne 15:18). The image is of us pulling on a rope attached to a heavy cart. As Isaiah puts it: "Wo unto them that draw iniquity with cords of vanity, and sin as it were with a cart rope." At first when I'd see this picture in my head it filled me with sadness. It sometimes still does, but more often now it makes me chuckle.
Think about it. Isaiah is telling us that sin and vanity are like ropes that bind us to a heavy, heavy load. The load we drag around with us, the load that weighs us down, consists of such things as depression, discouragement, guilt, pride, self-doubt, grudges, and any of the other negative feelings caused by sin. Once you get the picture in your head of a weary, feeble, sad person, the rope of sin over his shoulder digging more painfully into the muscle with every step as he drags the enormous load everywhere he goes, you see that every step gets harder and more painful. But all he needs to do to stop hurting and make his journey easier is to let go of the rope! It is so simple. How easy the journey would be without the heavy cart. And the irony? That's what makes me chuckle. No one needs to pull such a cart. Lugging the cart is self-inflicted pain. So why do we drag heavy loads around? Many reasons, but most of them boil down to pride. We can't admit we're wrong. We can't admit that all this junk we've been hauling behind us wasn't necessary. We're too embarrassed to admit our mistakes and repent. We are stuck in our old ways and too proud to learn something new.
But without the cart, we have the energy and the ability to skip—no make that dance—the path of life. Without the heavy cart obstacles in the road are a nuisance, but not insurmountable. Without the cart, the journey of life is a joy, not a burden. So let go.
Let us leave the cart with all its burdens behind, and let God take our blistered hands and help us along the path. He will, if we will let go of the rope and put our weary hands in His healing hands.