What Your Shoulders Carry

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When your shoulders feel burdened and your heart is heavy, you need to ask whose yoke you are wearing.

When stress bears down on your neck and depression clouds your mind, you need to ask whose yoke you are wearing.

When despair shuts down your vision and hopelessness siphons your strength, you need to ask whose yoke you are wearing.

“Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls.

For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.”

‭‭Matthew‬ ‭11:28-30‬ ‭NLT‬‬

When Jesus is offering you His yoke, it is an invitation to lay down whatever you are carrying (the yoke you have been walking in) whether it’s heavy because of what others have put on it or because of the burdens you yourself have added.

It is an invitation to come alongside Jesus and yoke up with Him.  His yoke is light for you because He bears all the weight of it. The word used for “easy” doesn’t mean without effort, it means “fit for use”.

There is still a yoke to bear and a burden to carry.  The difference is that Jesus bears the weight of it and gently trains you on how to fully function in it.

How to walk and rest, follow and trust, and with Him function faithfully in God’s purposes for you.

Are you bearing your own yoke? Your own plans, purpose, and expectations?

Are you walking in someone else’s yoke? Someone else’s plans, purposes, and expectations?

What are God’s plans, purposes, and expectations for this day? What would it look like to walk in them?

May you check whose yoke you are shouldering often and learn from Jesus how to be fully yoked with Him.

May you trust His gentle heart and let Him lead you to unseen delights of service to others today.

Gentle

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“Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near.”
‭‭Philippians‬ ‭4:5‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Why do I need the reminder to “let my gentleness be evident”? I don’t know about you but when I stress, I try to control things. I work to make things to the way I think it should be. When I feel that I am in a battle, I push everyone out, put up my walls and am prepared to fight.

When I am stressed, gentle is the last thing that I am to those around me.

The original Greek word used for gentleness in the verse above describes the heart of someone who will let God fight his battles for Him. It describes a person who has let go of trying to control the situation and allowed God to do what He needs to.

This is where having a relationship with Jesus changes things. It’s where trusting Him impacts how you live because He will never ask you to be something that He isn’t already.

Jesus IS near. 

Jesus says that He is so close that it’s like you’re yoked up with Him. Shoulder to shoulder, walking the same way, with Him bearing the load and directing the path.

He IS gentle. 

Jesus showed us what this kind of gentleness looks like. He focused on His relationship with His Father and only did what God directed Him to. He did not bend to peer pressure, comparison or even try to fit in with anyone other than His Father. He didn’t try to control the situations or people. He focused on being faithful to the part He was given to do and allowed God to work out the rest. 

Jesus lived yoked and yielded long before He offered it to His disciples.

“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.”
‭‭Matthew‬ ‭11:29‬ ‭NIV‬‬

He leads gently so that you can live gently.

Gentle is not weak it is focused trust as well as a deep knowing of who you are and whose you are.

My friend, may you begin to learn to live in the power of leading a gentle life by being yoked and yielded to the gentle Savior today.

Your Burden

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“Praise be to the Lord, to God our Savior, who daily bears our burdens.”

Psalm‬ ‭68‬:‭19‬ NIV

Every day brings:

  • New choices to make
  • New challenges to face
  • New fears to conquer
  • New burdens to bear

Every day brings:

  • Old memories that linger
  • Old mistakes still bearing consequences
  • Old fears that refuse to die
  • Old baggage that demands space and attention

God will bear your burdens every day. 

Old, new, heavy or light.

Everyday.

You may not know what burdens will be thrust upon you today but God does.

He stands with open arms and strong shoulders to bear them for you.

What new burden do you need to give to God? 

What old burden do you need to give to God? 

How can I pray for you today? 

Gentle Evidence

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“Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near.”
‭‭Philippians‬ ‭4:5‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Why do I need the reminder to “let my gentleness be evident”? I don’t know about you but when I stress, I try to control things. I work to make things to the way I think it should be. When I feel that I am in a battle, I push everyone out, put up my walls and am prepared to fight.

When I am stressed, gentle is the last thing that I am to those around me.

The original Greek word used for gentleness in the verse above describes the heart of someone who will let God fight his battles for Him. It describes a person who has let go of trying to control the situation and allowed God to do what He needs to.

This is where having a relationship with Jesus changes things. It’s where trusting Him impacts how you live because He will never ask you to be something that He isn’t already.

Jesus IS near. 

Jesus says that He is so close that it’s like you’re yoked up with Him. Shoulder to shoulder, walking the same way, with Him bearing the load and directing the path.

He IS gentle. 

Jesus showed us what this kind of gentleness looks like. He focused on His relationship with His Father and only did what God directed Him to. He did not bend to peer pressure, comparison or even try to fit in with anyone other than His Father. He didn’t try to control the situations or people. He focused on being faithful to the part He was given to do and allowed God to work out the rest. 

Jesus lived yoked and yielded long before He offered it to His disciples.

“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.”
‭‭Matthew‬ ‭11:29‬ ‭NIV‬‬

He leads gently so that you can live gently.

Gentle is not weak it is focused trust as well as a deep knowing of who you are and whose you are.

What does being led gently feel like to you?

What does not bending to peer pressure, not comparing yourself to others and not even trying to fit in look like to you?

My friend, may you begin to learn to live in the power of leading a gentle life by being yoked and yielded to the gentle Savior today.

 

His Yoke, Your Life, A New Way.

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“For we are his workmanship, having been created in Christ Jesus for good works that God prepared beforehand so we may do them.”

Ephesians 2:10 NET

Instead of asking God to give you strength to live your life, what if you asked Him to show you a different way of living it? 

Instead of looking for the reasons why things happened yesterday,  what if you looked for what is possible with God tomorrow?

Instead of assuming your life is already set in motion,  What if you ask God to show you what needs to change in it according to His purposes?

What if you dare to believe that Jesus has more for you?

Because He does.  He already has a path prepared in His heart for you with divine appointments and opportunities to bless on it.

What if today you laid down your to-do list and picked up His? Okay, that sounds crazy so maybe you ask God to show you His to-do list in the midst of yours?

God has unseen paths laid out before you to walk in to be a blessing to people you haven’t even met yet.

Life with Jesus is a journey of overcoming and conquering, first steps and new beginnings. It is an adventure of discovery and healing, of bold moves and humble hearts. It is possible if you are teachable.

If you are available Jesus will use you today.

His yoke, your life, a new way. 

Whose Yoke?

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When your shoulders feel burdened and your heart is heavy, you need to ask whose yoke you are wearing.

When stress bears down on your neck and depression clouds your mind, you need to ask whose yoke you are wearing.

When despair shuts down your vision and hopelessness siphons your strength, you need to ask whose yoke you are wearing.

“Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls.

For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.”

‭‭Matthew‬ ‭11:28-30‬ ‭NLT‬‬

When Jesus is offering you His yoke, it is an invitation to lay down whatever you are carrying (the yoke you have been walking in) whether it’s heavy because of what others have put on it or because of the burdens you yourself have added.

It is an invitation to come alongside Jesus and yoke up with Him.  His yoke is light for you because He bears all the weight of it. The word used for “easy” doesn’t mean without effort, it means “fit for use”.

There is still a yoke to bear and a burden to carry.  The difference is that Jesus bears the weight of it and gently trains you how to fully function in it.

How to walk and rest, follow and trust, and with Him function faithfully in God’s purposes for you.

Are you bearing your own yoke? Your own plans, purpose, and expectations?

Are you walking in someone else’s yoke? Someone else’s plans, purposes, and expectations?

What are God’s plans, purposes, and expectations for this day? What would it look like to walk in them?

May you check whose yoke you are shouldering often and learn from Jesus how to be fully yoked with Him.

May you trust His gentle heart and let Him lead you to unseen delights of service to others today.

Walk and Rest

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Life often demands that you keep on walking even when you are tired. When you are burdened with grief, you still have to go to work.   When you are battle weary someone still has to do the dishes.

Jesus says there is a way to walk and rest at the same time:

“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it”
‭‭Matthew‬ ‭11:28‬ ‭MSG‬‬

He says walk with me and I will show you how to do it.  He says to “Take my yoke” which just means “partner with me”.

Jesus says “I will bear the load and lead the way. Walk with me.”

Your “yoke” today may be dripping with unmet expectations, foundation-shaking experiences or unbearably heavy with too many obligations.

Jesus says to you today, “Here, take my yoke and I will take yours. My yoke is dripping with grace, burdened with divinely appointed purpose and wrapped in a deep peace that is not moved by tumultuous circumstances.”

You may be tired and weary today but still, you have to keep walking. Don’t walk alone. And swap yokes with Jesus, His is much better.

May you walk far and rest well in Jesus today.