Assemblies of God SearchSite GuideStoreContact Us

Daily Boost

  • July 11, 2014 - Reflections

    By Jean S. Horner
    The other day while walking down a corridor in a public building, I saw what appeared to be someone walking toward me. On coming closer, I found it was my own reflection in a huge mirror. For a moment it frightened me. Somehow a full-length reflection of one’s self is a startling thing. ...


Daily Boost

June 11, 2010 - Straws

By Scott Harrup

You’ve heard the expression, “the straw that broke the camel’s back.” According to one online encyclopedia, some Bactrian camels can transport 1,000 pounds. Other sites list 300 to 400 pounds as a more reasonable long-distance burden for camels. Even that lighter load represents two average-to-large adults. A healthy camel should be able to carry that load about 30 miles in a day.

A straw might weigh a fraction of an ounce, but if that fraction is added to a maximum existing load, collapse is inevitable. As a similar illustration, I think of the giant hydraulic presses used to test concrete columns, steel trusses and other building components. Pressure gradually increases, until one additional ounce causes the test sample to crumble or bend. World-class weightlifters can snatch hundreds of pounds over their heads until the addition of one tiny plate seems to glue the barbell to the ground.

The “straw” idiom illustrates how seemingly insignificant events can wreak havoc in combination with existing circumstances. We can all identify “straws” in our lives.

Some bring a chuckle or a good-natured huff of exasperation. We enjoy a favorite meal, but that one bite nudges us past merely full to painfully bloated. We read an intriguing book before bed and stay up just a little too late. We refill our morning coffee to the point of not-just-awake-but-awake-and-jittery.

Far more of life’s straws push us toward discouragement. We struggle with a tight budget, and our car breaks down or our child needs a medical procedure. We do our best on the job and then receive that one assignment that overwhelms us. We encounter minor relationship challenges on several fronts to be compounded with just one more argument with a friend, spouse or child.

“Enough, already! I didn’t need this!” we mentally shout out to the world, or desperately pray to God.


If you’re like me, you’ve discovered that desperate prayers are always more effective than anxious thoughts of surrender. Consider these promises from your Heavenly Father the next time a straw lands on your already unbearable load.

“Praise be to the Lord, to God our Savior, who daily bears our burdens. Selah” (Psalm 68:19, NIV).

“As a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him; for he knows how we are formed, he remembers that we are dust. As for man, his days are like grass, he flourishes like a flower of the field; the wind blows over it and it is gone, and its place remembers it no more. But from everlasting to everlasting the Lord’s love is with those who fear him, and his righteousness with their children’s children — with those who keep his covenant and remember to obey his precepts” (Psalm 103:13-18).

“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).

“Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you” (1 Peter 5:7).

— Scott Harrup is managing editor of the Pentecostal Evangel and blogs at Out There (



Email your comments to