For some reason, during my quiet time this morning, I had this memory of my dad emptying his pants pockets when he came home from work. He'd go into the bedroom to change out of his work clothes and put on his jeans to relax for the evening.
The process involved emptying everything out of his pockets and placing it all on his dresser. Out came his wallet, his keys, the loose handful of change, his comb and handkerchief. And all of it found its nightly place on the dresser...except for the handkerchief which usually made it into the jeans pocket. In the morning, before Dad left for work, he would reverse the routine, putting the items back into his pants pocket to carry with him throughout the day.
But not everything made it back into his pockets. If there were too many coins, he'd sort them out so the change didn't weigh so much. Sometimes, he'd set aside a screw or washer that he had been carrying with him until he could go to the hardware store to find the replacement he needed for one of his projects. But once he'd made his purchase, the old item got tossed. It was a quick, and effective cleansing that prepared him for his day.
This morning, I was surprised by the memory of my dad and this ordinary, insignificant routine. But as I was thinking about it, God seemed to whisper to me, "That's what I want you to do, Laura. Every night, I want you to "empty your pockets." Sort through all the cares and burdens and leave all the weight and concerns with me. I want to give you a fresh start each day. I will carry yesterday's burdens for you."
Today has been one of those days that I have felt weighed down with cares for several family members and friends who are struggling with some serious, and painful things. I prayed for each, multiple times, and yet my "pockets" have felt extremely heavy.
So, tonight, as I get ready for bed, I'm thankful that God whispered to me this morning. He knew that I'd need to take Him up on his offer to shoulder the concerns I've kept stuffed in my pockets today. All I need to do is empty them out into His hands.