Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: OVERLOAD (10/06/16)
- TITLE: The Transporter
By Judy Sauer
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Pedro knew this was a message from the Lord, yet he did not understand it. He tossed the rock into his wheel barrel, and his rough-worn hands grabbed the wooden handles and headed toward the mountain.
Reaching the base of the mountain, he looked up in disbelief. How am I to reach the top by today? It is so tall, he asked himself. Step by step, he began his ascent following a mud-rutted spiraling path up the mountain.
Not long into his journey, Pedro saw a small village ahead. Thirsty, he stopped and drew water from the well.
His thirst quenched, he put down the bucket—then a villager asked him, “I see you are headed to the summit. I have this rock that needs to go there too, and your wheel barrel is almost empty. I can’t make it up there today. Will you take it for me?”
Pedro noticed it was larger than his rock—about the size of a cantaloupe. He didn’t think it would make the trek more difficult, so he agreed, considering it a small act of kindness.
He continued his upward journey as hunger pangs grew in his stomach. He came towards a woman selling freshly-made goat cheese and stopped to buy.
She had an even bigger rock, the size of a large watermelon, that she told him also needed to be at the mountain top that day.
“I’m frail and unable to make the journey. Could you help me and take it with you?”
Feeling sorry for her, Pedro agreed. Even though her rock increased his load he kept moving on. With sweat pouring down his face and his back, he stopped to take a rest. This is hard. To help others is good, but I’m overwhelmed, he groaned.
He pushed forward as fatigue escalated by the minute.
A villager saw Pedro and ran to him. “Sir, could you do me a great favor? I have many obligations today, and I’m unable to reach the summit with my landscaping glacier boulder. I see you have room for it in your wheel barrel. Do you mind helping me today? I would be very grateful.”
Pedro agreed with great reluctance. This “helping others” was wearing a bit thin, and the boulder really added to the load, slowing him down to snail-pace.
The sun had begun to set when he finally reached the summit, where the Spirit was waiting for him.
“Why was this such a rough task?” Pedro asked.
“Because you carried more than I asked of you. You were kind-hearted as you helped those who said they could not make it today. What was the task?”
“Take my rock to the summit today.”
“Is that what you did?”
“Kind of. What was I supposed to do, especially with the frail woman?”
“You took on more than I asked and look at what it got you. You’re exhausted from the harder journey. You were kind, and a bit naïve, when you helped others. You had a goal to achieve and made it much harder on yourself. To your own detriment, you made the burden so much harder than it was intended to be.”
“What should I have done?”
“Everyone represented moments when the evil one sidetracked your progress. You have the power to decline others’ requests. Becoming a transporter for others’ rocks and boulders interfered with the task. They took advantage of you.”
The Spirit continued, “This theme is constantly recurring in your life. Others, who will always try to get someone to do their work, are highly capable. It’s not your job to do theirs, for even an innocent request can snowball and cause you to be overwhelmed and stressed out.” The Spirit urged that those quick to ask for help need to become more responsible.
Pedro was amazed at the enlightenment from the Spirit. “Wow! I needed to be reminded of this to prevent the evil one from tripping me up. This has been quite a lesson.”
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” —Matthew 11:28-30 NIV
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