• The Best Way to Overcome your Burdens

    Take His yoke upon you to lighten the load.As a child, I thought Jesus liked His eggs sunny side up.

    I never understood biblical metaphors like Psalm 23:1 “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.”

    I don’t want the Lord to be my shepherd?  (It’s a good thing I was a cute child!)

    Psalm 23 goes on to talk about God leading me to still waters.

    Full disclosure, I would rather be led to Krispy Creme when the HOT button is on!

    He also makes me lie down in green pastures?

    I wish he would make me lie down on one of those Tempur-pedic beds! (Have you tried one…The Husband and I are shopping for a new mattress! It’s DREAMY!!)

    “Christ’s yoke is easy and His burden is light” wasn’t helpful information for me to gain insight into how God works.

    All it did was make me think about Jesus eating eggs.

    During our Take heart series I have talked about God’s unfailing love, the Hope we can have in Him, and that we are safe to put our trust in Him.

    This week, I want to talk about REST.

    Not Tempur-pedic bed rest, but spiritual rest.

    Rest that comes from knowing you don’t have to figure life out on your own.

    I DO anxious like a Rock Star but I stink at rest!

    Here’s a Quiz:

    You and your husband decide to drive to Home Depot.

    On the way there, Husband pulls into the car wash.

    What do you do?

    A. Express appreciation to your husband for being thoughtful and taking good care of you car.

    B. Get bent out of shape because Car Wash was NOT in the plan!

    If you chose B, the support group for husbands of wives who have control issues will start once I plan it. (I’ll make cookies!)

    Learning what Matthew 11:30 really means challenges me daily (and sometimes HOURLY) to practice REST.

    Matthew 11:30

    “For My yoke is easy, and My burden is light.”

    First things first. It’s YOKE not YOLK. (Glad I cleared that up for myself!)

    Now, to understand this passage, you have to know the context.

    Jesus was speaking to the people about spiritual burdens that the Pharisees had played upon them.

    Some say the Pharisees added over 600 regulations about what “working” on the Sabbath meant.

    Legalism leads to guilt, shame, self-righteousness, and burdens no one could endure.

    Rest in the knowledge that you are not alone.

    Take my yoke (not yolk) upon you and learn from me.

    This was the perfect metaphor for people to understand.

    A yoke (not yolk) is a fitted harness that secures 2 oxen together.

    The farmer is specific about the oxen he uses to pull the cart.

    On one side, the farmer secures the yoke to the ox that’s well-trained, knows what’s going on, and has been with him for a while.

    On the other side, he secures the younger, possibly stubborn, know it all ox that needs direction.

    The younger ox gets “on the job” training.

    He takes his cue from the other ox.

    If the stubborn ox turns the wrong way, he’s unable to go too far because he and the wiser ox are secured to the same yoke.

    When the oxen are walking together, the yoke rests upon them and the cart is easily pulled.

    The journey is only uncomfortable when the stubborn ox wants to take his own course.

    But, the wiser ox knows the way.

    He knows where the path dips, where the rough patches are, and how steep the hills will be.

    He has walked this path before and he trusts the farmer.

    This does NOT mean the JOURNEY will be easy, it means we are not alone along the way.

    Jesus was urging the people to secure themselves to Him, not to the laws the Pharisees were forcing upon them.

    1 John 5:3-4 (ESV- emphasis mine)

    For this is the love of God, that we keep HIS commandments. And HIS commandments are not burdensome. For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world-our faith.

    Give up doing it the hard way!

    Unburden yourself from going it alone, feeling like you HAVE to control everything, or that YOUR way is the Best way!

    Be secured to Christ.

    He is walking beside us pulling our burdens to lighten the load.

    The next time The Husband pulls into the car wash, I will remember, “I am the stubborn ox!”

    Don't be the Stubborn Ox. Click To Tweet

    And let God lead you to still waters!

    It’s better for you than Krispy Creme.

    To celebrate the end of this series, I have a gift for you!


    I had these Take Heart Notecards made up for you to download.

    You can print them off on card-stock to write scripture, an encouraging note, or just “DON”T BE  THE STUBBORN OX!”

    I would LOVE to see how you use them! Post a pic on Instagram with #takeheartingod




  • Who Do You Trust With Your Heart?

    Who do you trust with all your heart?Have you ever participated in a team building exercise that encourages trust?

    Fall backwards and people will catch you.

    Put on a blindfold and have someone guide you along a path?

    No thank you!

    The only blindfold I wear is my sleep mask. (Have you tried a sleep mask? I can’t sleep without it.)

    When you’re falling backwards, you have to trust that the people in charge of catching you will have the strength and steady footing to hold you up without collapsing.

    Will they be able to bear the added weight?

    Will they lead you safely around obstacles?

    It’s easy to trust when you’re young.

    We trust daddy is gonna catch us when we jump into his arms.

    We trust what our parents tell us about Santa Clause, the Easter Bunny, and if we put a tooth under our pillow a fairy will come and take it and leave money. (That’s not creepy at all, right?)

    As we get older, trust becomes more difficult.

    We confide in a friend and they share your secret with someone else.

    We rely on a promise that doesn’t come through.

    We pour our heart into a relationship that comes to an end.

    I have been the receiver AND giver of mistrust.

    I’ve had my heart hurt and have been the one to hurt others.

    I ask questions like…

    What are they after?

    What do they want from me?

    What do they get from this?

    That’s because people are fallible.

    We are navigating through our own experiences, with our own pain, and carrying past hurts with us.

    What once came “without question” is now filled with doubt, hesitation, and holding back from truly sharing.

    How much would you be willing to TRUST if you knew UP FRONT that it was safe?

    Trust God with all your heart. He is your refuge and fortress in your time of need. Click To Tweet

    That the weight of your burden would not make them collapse?

    Not only will they catch you, but will hold you steady and support you fully.

    That the direction they lead you is not only the right one, but that you’re on solid footing.

    That is the Trust that ONLY God can give.Proverbs 3_5-6 update

    I talked about God’s unfailing love a few weeks ago.

    It is deeper, stronger, and will never be removed from those He loves.

    It is unconditional.

    His love is sacrificial.

    John 3:16

    For God so loved the world that He GAVE his only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

    Remember, we can have Hope in Him. Confidence that He is with us and that He hears us.

    Jeremiah 29:11 (HCSB)

    “For I know the plans I have for you”- this is the Lord’s declaration- “plans for your welfare, not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.”

    Knowing that He loves us with unfailing love, and we have hope in His plans for us, we can trust Him with our hearts, burdens, and our sorrows.

    trust part 3Freesia is the symbol of trust.

    It is a delicate flower that requires much care. Just like our hearts.

    God wants us to look to Him for trust.

    He will take care of you, never let you go,  won’t lead you astray or fail to catch you.

    How do you trust God?


    Trust Him with something small.

    Not because you want him to “PROVE” Himself ( he isn’t magic), but to soften our hearts to trust itself.

    It can feel weird to trust…tell Him that. (Even though He already knows it)

    The best way to find out if you can trust somebody is to trust them. -Ernest Hemingway-

    What about you?

    Do you struggle with trust?







  • What do you hope for in your life?

    What do you hope for in your life?There are many things I’ve “wished ” for over the years.

    I’ve wished for straight hair and for Kirk Cameron to be my boyfriend.

    I’ve wished I was taller, shorter, younger, older, smarter, and cuter.

    I’ve even wished for a pony!

    There’s an old song written by Dusty Springfield that goes, “wishin’ and hopin’ and thinkin’ and prayin’. (Try to get THAT out of your head now!)

     The difference between a wish and hope.

    I have a vivid memory of my oldest brother researching our ancestry for a school project.

    He told us our family is part Scottish.

    Well, I assumed that because of this, I would have the natural ability to become a world-famous “Scottish” dancer.

    For weeks I went out to our driveway and hopped around (thinking I was making up some EPIC Scottish dancing moves) WISHING someone would “discover” my Scottish dancing talents.

    Dance like no one's watching! Click To Tweet

    Unfortunately Fortunately, my Scottish dancing wish never came true. (Thank goodness there wasn’t  YouTube “back in my day”.)

    After that, I decided to focus my “talents” on becoming the next Mary Lou Retton.

    I “practiced” leaping across my bed for HOURS at a time.

    I had the “finish” pose NAILED!

    The rest of it?

    Not so much.

    Wish is a term that refers to a desire or point to something one longs to have.

    It is an impossibility or to desire something with little chance of it coming true.

    I could wish all day, but I was never going to get discovered for my Scottish dancing talent.

    No matter how many vaults across my canopy bed I made, the Olympic Gymnastics Team was not going to see my amazing finish pose and ask me to join them.

    In spite of not getting things I have wished for, what I DO have is HOPE.

    Pete Miller wrote “To hope is to anticipate a future event with a confident expectation of its fulfillment.”

    To put it another way, hope means to have confidence in the future.

    I hope The Kid grows up to serve God.

    I hope to live a long happy life with The Husband.

    I hope to grow in my pursuit of purpose.

    I hope to move into our new home soon.

    I hope to take a nap.

    Romans 15:13

    Now may the God of HOPE fill you with all joy and peace as you believe in Him so that you may overflow with HOPE by the power of the Holy Spirit.What do you hope for in your life? Part 2 of the "Take heart" series.

    “As You” is not a passive phrase.

    You take steps to believe in Him.

    The more steps you take, the more confidence you have.

    Which is scarier? Doing something for the first time or doing it the second? Or third?

    What would you do if you were overflowing with confidence?

    Last week I talked about God’s unfailing love.

    Remember Isaiah 54:10 “Mountains may move and hills shake but God’s love will NOT be moved from you.”

    No matter what, God’s love will NOT be moved from you.

    God will fill you with joy and peace AS YOU (take action towards) believe so that you may overflow with confident expectation by the power of the Holy Spirit.

    As Valentine’s Day approaches, you can have HOPE (confidence) knowing that you are loved with HIS unfailing Love.

    Psalm 62:5

    Rest in God alone, my soul, for my hope comes from Him.

    What is something YOU wished for as a child?



  • The Best Gift on Valentine’s Day

    The best Gift for Valentine's DayI have a love/hate relationship with February.

    On one hand, February is the month of my birthday. (Translation: CAKE)

    Gosh. I love cake!!!

    On the other hand, February means Valentine’s Day.

    You would think between my birthday and the name of this site having the word “Heart” in it, I would be ALL OVER Valentine’s Day.


    When The Kid (my pet name for him) was in public school, I would dread Valentine’s Day obligations! Thank goodness Pinterest wasn’t around.

    My hat is off to all you moms navigating THAT pressure.

    One reason I’m not a fan of Valentine’s Day.

    Forced participation.

    My fierce independence streak shows up and I want to “Rage against the Machine.”

    (Not really, but a girl can dream.)

    The Kid would bring home a letter from the teacher stating, ” You must bring in a Valentine for ALL the members of the class.”

    What about the child who pokes everybody in the lunch line? My kid has to give him/her a  “Stay cool, Valentine!” card?


    How about I just keep him home and he and I will eat cake? (Have I mentioned I love cake?)

    I’m not a fan of Valentine’s Day but I love “LOVE”.

    I love THE KIDmy husband, (still thinking about a blog nickname for him)  close friends and family, and the end of Sense and Sensibility when the youngest sister climbs up the tree to get a glimpse of Hugh Grant and Emma Thompson.

    I also love the movie Notting Hill.

    My favorite part is when Julia Roberts walks into the book shop and says to Hugh Grant, “I’m just a girl, standing in front of a boy, asking him to her.”

    (Maybe I love Hugh Grant?)

    God's love

    Movie Love is beautiful, isn’t it.

    Happy endings, romantic gestures, epic speeches, and even a boombox over the head blaring music until you come to the window. (Name that movie.)

    But in spite of the beautiful imagery movies depict, it isn’t REAL!

    What is Real?

    God’s Love.

    His love is an Unfailing Love.

    There is a worship song I love :

    Lord, you are more precious than silver.

    Lord, you are more costly than Gold.

    Lord, you are more beautiful than Diamonds,

    and NOTHING I desire compares to YOU.

    written by Lynn DeShazo.

    Wherever you are in life, there’s a deeper, stronger, more powerful love than any movie, cards with bunnies hugging, box of chocolate, happy ending could ever bring.

    Take Heart.

    God’s Love for YOU is unfailing.

    The best gift for Valentine's Day is God's unfailing love for us. Click To Tweet

    Isaiah 54:10 (HCSB – emphasis added)

    “Though the mountains move and the hills shake, MY LOVE will not be removed from you and MY covenant of peace WILL NOT BE SHAKEN,” says your compassionate Lord.

    So, instead of getting the hives when I see ROWS of Valentines, sprinkles, and cupcake wrappers, (mini cakes…YUM!)

    I will remind myself…

    God’s Love is Unfailing.

    I can celebrate that!

    What about you?

    Do you love Valentine’s Day?





    Make sure to come back next Tuesday for Part 2 in the “Take Heart” series.

    The best Valentine's Day gift

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