In My Father's House

Poems, Prayers, Inspirations, Photos and Musings about life, love and what it means to be a child of the Father

Monday, March 06, 2006

He is heavy, He's my Brother!

You may be familiar with this song:

He ain't heavy, He's my Brother

The road is long
With many a winding turn
That leads us to who knows where
Who knows when
But I'm strong
Strong enough to carry him
He ain't heavy, he's my brother

So on we go
His welfare is of my concern
No burden is he to bear
We'll get there
For I know
He would not encumber me
He ain't heavy, he's my brother

If I'm laden at all
I'm laden with sadness
That everyone's heart
Isn't filled with the gladness
Of love for one another

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...


This song was sung by many artists (Neil Diamond, The Holies, Olivia Newton John, among others)and is very popular among Christian circles. People often say that it is easier to carry someone when he is your own brother. I'd like to offer a different take on this theme. For me, the closer you are to someone (relative, friend, community member), the heavier he is to carry. When you know someone intimately, the more it is difficult be patient, to be forgiving. When someone close to you hurts you, the hurt is twice as painful as the one inflicted by a stranger or someone you don't care about. A brother is more difficult to correct, more difficult to please.

The emotional baggage or investment is bigger or greater with a brother. The memories you shared, experiences you had together, common things done with one another--these are what makes carrying him more difficult. When he wrongs you, the weight of these things further weigh you down. You find it harder to forgive. You find it more difficult to move on. You find it more unbearable to think that he has done the unthinkable to you (of all people, you are the least I expected to do this to me).

But here is the catch. When we truly love a brother, no matter how heavy he is as a burden on our shoulders, he becomes very light when we carry him with Jesus. I am reminded of that beautiful scene in the Passion of the Christ when Joseph of Arimatea helped Jesus carry his cross. In that scene, Joseph did not carry the cross by himself. He carried it with Jesus, their shoulders touching, their eyes meeting together. That is what makes things easy to carry, when we carry it with Christ.


  • At 9:31 PM, Blogger jaki said…

    it's so true. i've experienced that a lot of times, but here i am, i love them so much.

    "Love is not blind. it sees but it doesnt mind." Ü

    God bless!

  • At 12:29 AM, Blogger vaN said…

    I agree. (so much that that's all I can say.) ^_^

  • At 7:33 AM, Blogger sonoftheprodigal said…

    jackie and vaninski. thanks for dropping by. hope to see you in cdo in june.

  • At 9:09 PM, Blogger rox said…

    hey.. i love this post :) it ties in well with a recent article i wrote, hehehe.

    with your permission, i'd like to include it in our community's newsletter :) hope you don't mind..

  • At 12:31 PM, Blogger Lorie said…

    hi father noel! i was reading your post and i can't help wondering kasi i checked it out and it was Simon the Cyrene who carried the Lord's cross, while it was Joseph of Arimathea who asked for Jesus' body to bury it in his tomb...

    i hope this doesn't sound self-righteous or anything...

    take care father noel!

  • At 6:04 PM, Blogger sonoftheprodigal said…

    yes lorie. it was simon of cyrene. thanks for the correction.


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