Galatians 6:2 – Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ. (KJV)
When my youngest daughter left home a few years ago, she packed her large assortment of stuffed toys to take with her. But as she left her room, she hesitated in the doorway and said, "Mom, the room looks too empty! Here, you keep Pinky for me." She took the large pink teddy bear out of her bag and put it on the bed. I'd never had my own teddy bear and didn't think much about it until Pinky was mine. For some strange reason, Pinky looked lonely, and shortly after this, another arrived to keep Pinky company. Over the next few years, the collection grew and grew and grew.
While I was sorting through things in preparation for our move, the question became what to do with all the bears. We just didn't have room for them all. The last week before the moving van arrived, I had an idea. On Sunday, I had been asked to prepare a children's story for church, and I decided to take Pinky's friend, Prattle, to church in a big green garbage bag. During children's time, we talked about bears. Then I asked them if they knew that the word "bear" could mean to show how we cared for another. After this, all the children were invited to reach to the bottom of the garbage bag and pull out a bear to take home with them. Each bear had the words "Bear one another's burdens" attached to its neck with a ribbon. Each child was encouraged to remember to pray for a friend whenever they saw their bear, for prayer is the most effective way we can help to bear one another's burdens.
Prayer: Dear God, You are the great burden-bearer. Help us to bring all our cares and those of our friends and loved ones to You each day in our prayers. Amen.