The Gospel of Luke: a commentary & meditation

"Lest your hearts be weighed down"

Scripture: Luke 21:34-38

34 "But take heed to yourselves lest your hearts be weighed down with dissipation and drunkenness and cares of this life, and that day come upon you suddenly like a snare; 35 for it will come upon all who dwell upon the face of the whole earth. 36 But watch at all times, praying that you may have strength to escape all these things that will take place, and to stand before the Son of man." 37 And every day he was teaching in the temple, but at night he went out and lodged on the mount called Olivet. 38 And early in the morning all the people came to him in the temple to hear him.

Meditation: Is there anything in your life which holds you back from the joy and freedom of the Lord?  God wants our hearts for him and for his kingdom.  But our hearts can be weighed down by many cares and by sin.  Jesus offers us true freedom—  freedom from the power of sin and of wastefulness—  wasting ourselves on unnecessary things which keep us from God.  Jesus offers us  freedom from the power of addictions and from slavery to our passions—  making food, drink or other things our master rather than our servant.  And Jesus offers us freedom from the power of crippling anxieties and needless cares– being overwhelmed by fear rather than consumed with the love of God.

 Jesus warns us of the temptation to slacken off—  to become lethargic or to fall asleep spiritually. It is very easy to get caught up in the things of the present moment or to be weighed down with troubles. The Lord knows our shortcomings and struggles and he gives us the grace to bear our burdens and to walk in his way of holiness. But there is one thing he doesn't tolerate: indifference or being passive when we should be actively seeking God, and an attitude of not caring and doing nothing! God expects us more of us than we can do by ourselves.  His grace is sufficient!  He expects us to be actively watching for his visitation, and to pray specifically for the strength to persevere in the faith, to endure trials which come our way, and to escape from temptation to sin, especially from apostasy—  the denial of Christ out of fear or pride. God is ever ready to fill us with his grace, strength, and power.  Is your heart hungry for God or is it weighed down by other things?

"Lord, you fill us with all good things.  Fill my heart with the love, peace, joy, and righteousness of your kingdom.  May the fire of the Holy Spirit inflame my heart with an eager longing for you and for your return."

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 (c) 1999, 2000 Don Schwager