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He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother

Carry each other's burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ. Galatians 6:2 NIV

There's an old song from The Hollies entitled "He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother." While the music is secular, it could be sung at church on Sunday mornings. Its meaning is as timeless as when it was recorded in 1969 to today.  

While the song's title is debated, one account attributes it to an 1884 book, The Parables of Jesus; James Wells, Moderator of the United Free Church of Scotland, tells the story of a little girl carrying a big baby boy. Seeing her struggling, someone asked if she wasn't tired. Surprised, she replied: "No, he's not heavy; he's my brother." Here are a few lines from that song.

It's a long, long road

From which there is no return

While we're on the way to there

Why not share

And the load

Doesn't weigh me down at all

He ain't heavy, he's my brother

He's my brother

He ain't heavy, he's my brother

He ain't heavy, he's my brother

In today's verse, the Apostle Paul encourages the church in Corinth to do just that. But he further explains why, "in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ." The law that Christ commands is this, "Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another." (John 13:34-35)

Notice this is a commandment from Jesus. It's not a suggestion or something to be taken under advisement but an order. We are to love as we are loved by Jesus, including carrying one another's burdens.

How can we help carry the burdens burden of our brothers and sisters? Here are a few suggestions.

  • Identify someone in your life who may be carrying a heavy burden. It could be a friend, family member, or even a neighbor. Reach out to them and offer a listening ear or a helping hand.

  • Volunteer as a group at a local shelter, food bank, or community center. Serving together strengthens our bond and allows us to share the load of those in need.

  • Pair up with another member of our congregation and become prayer partners. Commit to praying for each other's burdens daily.

  • Spend time in personal reflection on your burdens. Offer them to God in prayer, and consider how you might allow others to help you with your load.

Let us pray.

Heavenly Father,

As we journey through this life, Your word in Galatians 6:2 reminds us to "Bear one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ." In the spirit of brotherhood and the lyrics of "He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother," we lift our hearts to You in prayer.

Lord, teach us to be our brother's keeper,

To walk in compassion and love's steady stride.

For the road is long, filled with joys and sorrows,

Yet we carry each other, with You as our guide.

We remember the words, "The road is long,

With many a winding turn,

That leads us to who knows where, who knows when."

But we are not weary, for in our hearts burns

Your commandment to love again and again.

As Jesus taught us in John 13:34-35,

"A new command I give you: Love one another.

As I have loved you, so you must love one another.

By this everyone will know that you are my disciples,

if you love one another."

So we pray, O Lord, let us not be laden,

With the weight of pride, let our spirits be free.

For we know that "He ain't heavy, he's my brother,"

And in Your love, we find our strength and unity.

May we live out these words in our daily actions,

Carrying each other's burdens without faltering or swaying.

For in doing so, we embody Your teachings,

And walk in the light of Your love every day.

In Your holy name, we pray. Amen.


Pastor Tim

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