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Posts Tagged ‘burdens’

And I will pour out on the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem a spirit of grace and supplication.

Zechariah 12:10a (NIV)

May your day be so very blessed! 😀

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9 Be merciful to me, Lord, for I am in distress;
my eyes grow weak with sorrow,
my soul and body with grief.
10 My life is consumed by anguish
and my years by groaning;
my strength fails because of my affliction,
and my bones grow weak.
11 Because of all my enemies,
I am the utter contempt of my neighbors
and an object of dread to my closest friends—
those who see me on the street flee from me.
12 I am forgotten as though I were dead;
I have become like broken pottery.
13 For I hear many whispering,
“Terror on every side!”
They conspire against me
and plot to take my life.

– Psalm 31:9-13 (NIV)

“Be merciful to me, Lord, for I am in distress…” When we are at our lowest and feel that we have been forsaken, left behind, who is there for us? God! When we are in trouble we call out for God. When all seems to be lost God is there–or rather…He is here. Help me, God, for I need You! May we all need God. 

May your day be so blessed!

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I didn’t mean to neglect my blog. The trials I have been going through have not slowed down but have re-manifested themselves into other things that I am trying hard to deal with. In my younger days I could do so much like a circus performer with those spinning plates but now I have a tough time getting just one plate to spin… 😀 

 

I semi-joke that Job has become my buddy this past year. The trials of Job were great—immense. If nothing else, they are there for us to learn from. The book of Job is not a quick study like it seems and neither are “great” trials. Perseverance and patience..we must learn to wait on the Lord. In His good time—and not ours.

 

We have to be ready to hear God’s message. Many times we don’t hear because we are not listening fully. Elihu was the young friend who prepared Job for His talk with God. God uses messengers, physical people, to prepare us for what He is about to reveal. I suspect that most messengers have no clue at what role they play in God’s plan and desire for us. I have had quite a few of these messengers along the way, especially lately…a great many these past few weeks. Of course, one must discern if the message is divine or from some other source—not easy to be sure sometimes but it is critical that we know.

 

In essence we are all messengers in some way. If we walk with God, we can be messengers for God. If don’t walk with Him, we can become messengers for evil even when we seem to be doing good. Here is to being a messenger for God and serving Him. May you walk with God always!

 

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Is it simply coincidence that things happen in the way that they do? Do they happen truly by chance? I don’t believe so—maybe sometimes but not always. I believe there are times when God speaks to us through these things if nothing else but to let us know He is there and that we need to take notice. For me, it is further proof that I am on the right track.

 

I posted the previous post this past Saturday, “Great Is the Lord” with scripture taken from Psalms 96. My soul needed scripture to study, to dwell in, to quench my thirst. This scripture is what answered my need and I wanted to share it. When searching in the Bible next to the computer, I first started in a passage from Job–chapter 21. Job and I have become so close in “buddyship” that I am ready to leave him (sorry ole pal). I moved on. The next devotional was Psalms 96. Oh, what words! What a beautiful Psalm-such meaning and fervor.

 

Some other things have happened since Thanksgiving that have shown me God’s hand. I am trying to follow His lead as He lifts me up over the briar thickets. As I listened to the scripture being read at Sunday morning worship, what was the passage for the day? Psalms 96! Coincidence? Chance? I don’t believe that for one second! God had a message for me. My message is not the same as for others but we must do our best to discern what God is saying in order to follow HIM. This message was so great that my heart leaped for joy and if anyone knows anything about me, there has been very little joy around for all of the pain that has been caused in my family.

 

I don’t know what lies ahead in my life (or anyone else’s) but I know that without God so many things would have never happened. What does this really mean? To me, this means that God has enveloped me so great as my Protector. Thank you, God! You have given me everything I need. Just as I moved from the passage of Job into a new devotional of Psalms so shall my life imitate the Word. May God continue to be a bigger part of my life each and every day that I walk with Him. Please watch out for those little times in your life where God is speaking. Sometimes is it is through times of coincidence. People refer to these things by different names but I believe they are special. Please take care and love the Lord!

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Each year at this time there is an art festival downtown featuring a nationality or certain culture. It was good weather Saturday, so my daughters and I went down to get some German food and visit the art stands. We stood in line in the warm sun (we got burned) for about 20-30 minutes before we gathered our food and looked for a place to sit. Well, of course there were no seats and I motioned for us to gather around this big block thing that was helping to hold up the tent. I was going to stand but decided to sit on the ground. Not long after this couple came up and told us to take their seats.

wikipedia

Then this lady at the table said my daughter could sit in her mother’s seat until her mother returned and when she got there a man gave up his seat for my daughter. Can you believe this? I’m not used to people being so nice.

 

The Lord will provide as long as we trust in Him. Things may not always go the way we want them but He will provide in the way that we need. Some may argue this point especially in sickness and in death, but those are a natural part of life.

 

I don’t want to get very far into my family situation on this blog, but when the girls’ father left I was concerned about what might happen since I can no longer provide for myself or anyone else. God had been telling me that He would take care of us—for several months this is what I heard when I prayed before the news came. Do you know how hard it is to trust completely? I had a conversation about this with one daughter—about how I believe God would provide—and she said that she didn’t understand God but that no matter what the family seemed to go through, it seemed that we were taken care of. I said that was God.

 

God sees our pain and suffering and he doesn’t want us to be in the middle. At times, these occasions are tempering different parts of our lives, beating back what is not needed and making strong of what is. Trust in God. He is there when we need Him. I know.

 

May your day blessed and your week filled with happiness! 😀

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It seems that we all have trials and sufferings to bear somewhere along life’s journey. Sometimes these phases morph into what we see as a deep abyss and we feel that we can never regain what we have lost or return to where we were before. The more we try, the steeper the walls become or that is how we see it.

 

There is a poem by Helen Steiner Rice called The Way to God (link). I think it really speaks to those who have been suffering whether it is from pain, sickness, loss, sorrow, or other. As we go through these times, we only wish for them to be over not seeing that the experience of getting through them doesn’t have to make us weaker or more vulnerable but better able to use our sufferings to help others. A lasting pain can lead us to be closer to God. This is not a bad thing. If we had no pain, would we call on God?

 

For me, constant physical pain, lack of feeling in other parts of my body, not being able to walk without some aid, and the risk of seizures are all things that draw me close and help me desire to seek God. Life is not easy but if it was, would I turn to Him? I have a handicap that I have lived with most of my life. It is not what defines me—or I don’t want it to be. He helps me get through each day and not only to travel through it but to do the best I can in order to glorify Him. It is not about what I need or want. God gives me the sustenance to get me through so I can give to others.

 

In my devotional today from Streams in the Desert by L B Cowman from Crosswalk.com, there was this:

“The most deeply taught Christians are generally those who have been brought into the searching fires of deep soul-anguish. If you have been praying to know more of Christ, do not be surprised if He takes you aside into a desert place, or leads you into a furnace of pain.”

 

Do not punish me, Lord, by taking my cross from me, but comfort me by submitting me to Thy will, and by making me to love the cross. Give me that by which Thou shalt be best served… and let me hold it for the greatest of all Thy mercies, that Thou shouldst glorify Thy name in me, according to Thy will. –A Captive’s Prayer

 

To be cont’d…

 

May you walk in the light and feel little pain and may you seek God every day! 😀

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The references to yoke in the Bible have less than favorable meanings in most scripture. It was mostly used to describe slavery of some sort whether it was the Israelites in Egyptian bondage or those who were slaves to idols and sin. Other times it was used to describe one’s burdens. The idea is meant as a coupling to something or someone. In Matthew 11, yoke is used to describe how to lessen one’s burden by putting on the yoke of Jesus:

 

28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 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.30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” (NIV)

 

Wooden yokes are bulky and cumbersome, particularly a double yoke. My grandmother had bow yoke hanging above her fireplace. This one had been passed down through the family. These big things were carved/cut from wood usually used for oxen or other work animal such as mules. Hers was all wood but sometimes the bow part was made from metal as seen in this photo.

wikipedia

 

Math principle…one animal can do a certain amount of work but using two animals pulling together (that’s the key) can increase production. However, wearing a double yoke is not as easy as one would think. First there is the weight of the yoke itself and then the animals/humans must learn to walk in accordance with the other to pull and work together. It sounds easy but cooperation is needed—willingness to give and compromise.

 

A single yoke means responsibility, commitment. We all have burdens to bear to some extent depending on what we are working toward or our situation. A double yoke means that if we cooperate, we have someone to help us along. This lessens our load. As we muddle through life struggling under the weight of our single yoke, we bog down and can’t get up at times. Jesus offers us a lighter yoke, one that when accepted shows us how to walk and use our yokes to the best of our abilities even strengthening our capabilities. If we choose Jesus, if choose God, He will help us with our burdens.

 

Psalm 55:22 says:


Cast your cares on the Lord
and he will sustain you;
he will never let
the righteous be shaken. (NIV)

 

Take a minute and see what you are yoked to. Is it a healthy situation? Can you improve? Can you help someone else to bear their burdens—their cares—their problems?

 

Isaiah 40 28b-31says:

 

He [God] will not grow tired or weary,
and his understanding no one can fathom.
29 He gives strength to the weary
and increases the power of the weak.
30 Even youths grow tired and weary,
and young men stumble and fall;
31 but those who hope in the Lord
will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
they will run and not grow weary,
they will walk and not be faint. (NIV)

 

And, Proverbs 3 says:

 

Let love and faithfulness never leave you;
bind them around your neck,
write them on the tablet of your heart.
Then you will win favor and a good name
in the sight of God and man.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways submit to him,
and he will make your paths straight. (NIV)

 

A yoke. The yoke of Jesus is not meant to be a burden in the Christian sense. It is meant to help ease our burdens.

 

May you grow in strength as you trust in the Lord and may your day be so richly blessed!  🙂

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