February 2, 2021

The Joy of Bearing Your Mate’s Burdens

Written by Shana Schutte

“When you bear the burdens of your mate together in compassion, the storm will strengthen the cords of your union.”

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – February 2, 2021

A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. John 13:34

Being in a good marriage involves many heartwarming experiences. It means sharing celebrations such as the birth of a child, the birth of a new career, or the birth of life in a new community. It means hugging, kissing, holding, and sharing intimate moments.

But of course, even the best marriages include sharing life’s not-so-happy moments too. Before tying the knot—especially if we are idealistic and romantic—we may focus on how love will enhance our lives and how fun it’s going to be (and in a good marriage love is loads of fun!) But no matter how good a good marriage is, there are times when loving someone can be uncomfortable—simply because we are bound to them for better—and for worse.

We will sometimes feel the burdens our mate carries. Their disappointments, tears, and worries will affect us. Their struggles, concerns, and challenges will burden us.

Galatians 6:2 says, “Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.” With Jesus as our example, we can experience the privilege of caring for another person more than we care for ourselves.

This means that when a load is threatening to destroy your mate’s hope, you bear their burden. When they question their ability to move into the future without looking back in regret, you bear their burden. When they struggle with their identity, you bear their burden. When they worry about money, kids, and the future, you bear their burden.

This doesn’t mean you can—or should–take on what God has called for them to do for themselves.

You can’t fix their addiction, smooth out their relational problems or fix a negative attitude.

But you can bear their burdens by. . .

In marriage, there are times when love requires sacrifice—and love is totally worth it.

When you bear the burdens of your mate in compassion, after the storm passes you’ll discover that going through trouble together has strengthened the cords of your union. You’ll joyfully realize that fiery seasons have created a love far better than the fairy tale you dreamed of. They will have created a stronger foundation rooted in genuine love and friendship that troubles and burdens cannot destroy.

“Many waters cannot quench love; rivers cannot sweep it away. If one were to give all the wealth of one’s house for love, it would be utterly scorned” (Song of Solomon 8:7).


 Lord, please make me the kind of mate who bears with my spouse in love, patience, and kindness. Help me believe that a good answer is coming while I care for the one you have given to me. Amen.


Is your mate carrying a burden in which you can be of help? Pray for your mate today and ask God how you can be an encouragement.

Related Reading

James 2:8; Romans 15:1; 1 Thessalonians 5:14; 1 Corinthians 13:8-13

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