Today, over at the Faith Barista we are discussing rest. As I was thinking about this post, I thought…rest? What is that? I think I vaguely remember something called rest years ago, long before work, kids, life…Then I ran across this Scripture
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
I got to thinking about this verse and, as my mother taught me, I began to break it down so I would fully understand it.
We all carry stuff around with us everyday. When we are kids, the yoke is light for the most part. Our biggest worries are whether or not we will get to play with our friends today or when Susie Q tells us she’s not our friend anymore over a misunderstanding. Then we’re teenagers. Now are yoke is carrying boyfriend/girlfriend troubles, peer pressure, general teenage angst, etc. Then we become adults; we start our jobs in the world, we get married, have families, try to have lives and our yokes become heavier and heavier. And if our life contains tragedy or hardships beyond the norm, our yoke can be even heavier than ever.
Have you ever noticed that it’s not horses or donkeys that typically carry yokes? It’s usually oxen and even then, it’s usually two of them to carry one yoke. Our bodies, both physically and spiritually, were never meant to carry so much.
In the Scripture listed above, Christ tells us to take His yoke on ourselves. But it goes on in verse 30 to say
For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.
See Christ knew that all our worries, fears, problems, etc. would weigh on us so heavily. When He died on the cross, He died for our sins and as a wonderful bonus, he takes our heavy yoke and replaces it with his easy one. He wants to carry the heavy yoke for us. That’s real rest.
Today, I challenge
you myself, to take on the yoke of Christ and actually rest!
I love to write, that is obvious since I have a blog. I didn’t just come up with this talent out of thin air though. I am convinced that a good bit of it came from my mother. She has previously written a guest post on my blog, which you can view here.
Now, she has started her own blog. Her first post is a great one and I encourage you all to head on over there and give her a shout out!
I’ve seen this on a couple of blogs lately and though I am most definitely not one to always follow the trends, I thought this would be a fun way to get to know some things about me. I am changing some of the letters as they are not something I want or would answer so publicly. And some of them I couldn’t figure anything to change it too, so you just have to bear with odd ones. 🙂
(A) Age: 32 years old; though days it feels older 🙂
(B) Best Friend: My mother – she’s the greatest!
(C) Chore You Hate: Cleaning Bathrooms and Folding Laundry
(D) Dogs? We have one…Roxy; Pitt/Lab/Who knows what Mix
(E) Essential Start Your Day Item: COFFEE!!!!
(F) Favorite Color: Red; Black; all depends on the day.
(G) Gold or Silver? Silver or White Gold
(H) Height: approximately 5′ 5″
(I) Instruments You Play: My voice
(J) Job Title: Assistant to the Editor
(K) Kids: One – My precious son Stephen! 🙂
(L) Live: Great state of Texas
(M) Mom’s Name: Patricia
(N) Nicknames: Apes
(O) Oranges or Apples? Apples; for some reason the only type of orange family fruit I can eat are satsuma and mandarin oranges, the rest are too acidic
(P) Pet Peeve: Bad drivers! Liars, cheaters, smacking (yes, I have several)
(Q) Quote of the day: “If you choke on a Smurf, what color would it turn?”
(R) Right or Left Handed? Right handed
(S) Siblings: Older brother, younger sister, teenage brother
(T) Time You Wake Up?disgusting 5am
(U) Unknown Fact About Me? I love old movies! I’m talking black and white movies
(V) Vegetable You Dislike: Asparagus
What Makes You Run Late: waking up late!
(X) X-Rays You’ve Had Done: can’t remember anything other than sinuses, but I’m sure I’ve had more
(Y) Yummy Food You Make: Pot roast; Beef n Casserole
(Z) Zoo, Favorite Animal: Seal
Today is a day of longing for me. I desperately long to be able to be a stay-at-home mom. I know there are some of you out there who might wonder why in the world I would want to do this…let me lay some background.
When I was growing up, all I wanted to do, besides the usual sing, act, dance that a lot of little girls desire, was to be a wife and a mother. I would push my sister around in her stroller when she was little and pretend to be the mama. When I would play with my dolls, I was the mom. When I was 18, I was engaged and so excited that I would be able to begin living my dream…then it all fell apart. after many years of relationships, breakups, and heartaches, I finally got married. In 2001, I had a beautiful baby boy and then in 2002, before my son was a year old, my marriage fell apart. My dreams of being that full-time wife and mother shattered completely. I was still a mother, but now I had to work full-time as well
I also need to say that I am not a lazy person by any means. I have been working on and off since I was 14 years old, so working is not unknown to me. And I will continue to work some if I ever get the chance to stay at home, I’ll just work from home on websites. But I’m tired…I’m tired of having to work to make ends meet and then not always making ends meet. I am tired of having to juggle time with my son with a full-time job and all other activities that we need to do. My hearts desire is to be at home with my son.
So, I’m waiting…I’m waiting for the chance to be home more and work less; I’m waiting on God to show me where to go next and how to train my son and find ways to make it work in the waiting…I know there is always the chance that I will be working till I can no longer work, but I pray that is not the case.
Besides, like a friend reminded me of in his blog today (thanks, Tony!), “Delight yourself in the LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart. Psalm 37:4″
Remember that in a race everybody runs, but only one person gets the prize.
You also must run in such a way that you will win.
Today’s reading in His Princess: Love Letter from Your King talks about being destined to win and therefore taking the pressure off ourselves to please anyone but God. I love this line, “Take the pressure off yourself, because I did not put it there.”
Until the last two years, I was very much a people pleaser. I still struggle with it from time to time, but I finally came to the place that (for the most part) I don’t care what others think of me. I was the little girl who when I was in trouble, all my mother would have to do is look at me and I would start to cry and be sorry for what I had done. I hated to disappoint. The older I got, the worse that got. I didn’t want to disappoint my parents, so I strove to be the best daughter ever. I didn’t want to disappoint my teachers so I would always offer to help out in class and not make waves. I didn’t want to disappoint my friends, so I was the one they could go to when they needed a friend and I rarely every laid my burdens on any of them. I tried to be careful what I said and did in front of people because I didn’t want to be perceived as stupid or silly. I wanted to be liked by everyone around me and when I wasn’t, I would feel it to my core. I remember that on my 13th birthday, I had only one friend at my slumber party. I felt that one deeply. I look back now and I know it wasn’t because of anything I had particularly done, but it was just what happened, and so I equated that to mean that I must not be good enough. I lived out this feeling for the majority of my life. in the last two years or so, I have come to the place that, unless you are a very close friend of mine, I don’t care as much what you think of me. i am learning that I am OK just the way that I am because God made me this way. So, now I run this race, trying to constantly remind myself that I have already won. I still struggle, more than I would like, with pleasing others, but I am working very hard to just try to please God.
Do you try to please people more than God? Do you care what your friends, family and even strangers think about you more than caring about what you think of yourself or what God thinks of you?
Last night, my son and I received a long awaited package that I had won over at Kristine McGuire’s site back in January. Kristine McGuire often does movie reviews and had a chance to win a movie night package. When the package arrived yesterday, we were excited. In it were two Family Night movies sponsored by Walmart. (If you don’t know anything about Walmart’s new Family Movie Night push, click here.) We had received the movies, A Walk in My Shoes and The Jensen Project, a box of Dots candy and a bag of movie butter popcorn (my favorite!). With all the problems we’ve been having lately, I wasn’t sure that I wanted to suspend Stephen’s grounding from electronics last night, but I decided that we needed some time together and this would be a good thing to do. So, we watched The Jensen Project. It was a good, clean movie that both of us could watch. One of my favorite actresses was in the movie, Kelly Martin, some familiar actors, but not in recent shows, as well as a good bit of new actors that I had yet to see. I was worried this movie would be cheesy, as a lot of family oriented movies can be. (It seems Hollywood didn’t know how to make family oriented movies for years without being cheesy.) It turned out to be a good movie! And from the plot of the movie, I was able to show my son how the small step of lying could lead to the big steps in the long run. It was a good example I could use to teach the truths I am trying to instill in him right now.
So, thank you Walmart and P&G, a huge thank you to Kristine McGuire for a movie that gave us some laughs, some adventure, and a lot of good lessons about life!!