You have 24 unread emails and ten of those are high priority; 16 unheard voicemails and three of those are marked urgent. Your gas tank and bank account are both on E! Many of us live our lives everyday within those first three sentences. Stress, baggage, being overwhelmed and burdens are all one in the same. They are weights that we carry around with us through life making us overwhelmed. If we could really see ourselves through spiritual eyes the baggage that we carry would blow our minds. Imagine yourself, strapped with a backpack of financial debt, a bag of family issues is weighing down your left shoulder, a bag of friendship issues is weighing down your right shoulder, your hands are dragging bags full of hurt, shame and disappointment and strapped around your neck your pulling the weight of your job or the lack there of.
Morning after morning we wake up with this baggage. Every night we lay down with this baggage until we finally snap! This breaking shatters us into many pieces and leaves a mess for whoever is close enough to feel the effects. Most of our baggage comes from trying to ‘have it all’, keeping up with the Jones’, ‘faking to you make it’. Stress almost always involves an addiction for man's approval. You are already APPROVED BY GOD! Here’s a truth: NO ONE CAN HAVE IT ALL. Say that out loud: NO ONE CAN HAVE IT ALL. The other part of our baggage comes from our situtations we can not control. Whichever one you are dealing with today, if you are determine to lie this down, you have to be determined to pick up a different system of dealing with life.
Burdens make us slaves, keeping us oppressed. Burdens lie to us, telling us to hang our heads and just plow through. They make us believe that our future will never get better.
But how do we really rid ourselves of undue stress and lay these bags and burdens down? Jesus knows all about these burdens, these yokes and snares we face in life. He compels us in Matthew 11:28-30; â€œCome to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My Yoke is easy and My burden light.â€? (NKJV) So the first thing we should do is, come. Acknowledge that there is a place of refuge and rest made available to you. Once you make the step to come, Jesus promises to give us rest, take a load off your feet and just rest for a minute. Then we must make an exchange, lay our burdens down and take up His yoke of learning, His way of doing things. He promises us that His way is gentle, pleasant and comfortable, fitting for our souls. Galatians 5:1 goes further and warns us to stand in this new freedom and donâ€™t get tangled up again with burdens.
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Here’s Some Hope to Help you Stand! Set a Perspective - Ask yourself a few quick questions when in doubt. 1. Is this going to immediately affect me in a good or bad way? 2. Will this add or subtract from my pursuit of being a whole person? 3. Why I am doing this? Putting things in this view will instantly show you which direction to take. It’s up to you to answer those questions honestly. First Things First – an old adage put life into priority like this: God 1st: Self 2nd; Spouse 3rd; Children 4th; Work and Church are 5th and 6th depending on your vocation. Regardless of your situation, 1 and 2 are not up for debate. Your decisions and time should be allocated according to this scale. Sticking to this scale is up to you. How heavy are your bags??? Put a Cap On It! – My rule of thumb is, “No More Than Two”. This rule is for every activity, class, sport, group, organization, etc. in my life and in the lives of my family. This dispels the notion that you can multitask efficiently. If you are doing too much, you probably aren’t doing anything very well. Be determined to perform at a high level in everything with which you are involved. This rule will keep you focused on what’s really important and keep you from picking up extra baggage! Lay it Down and Leave it Alone – These are things that are primarily out of our control; unemployment, relationships issues, the loss of a loved one. These kinds of burdens have to be laid down, you have to relinquish the idea that you can manage them and trust Jesus to carry your burden for you. This takes time, counsel and a boldness from you.
Kira McConico’s universal assignment is to deliver encouragement to the hopeless through her Assigned To Encourage! ™ Words are powerful and can be spoken into dark times and bring light to life's situations. In addition, Kira is an inspirational speaker. Her target audience is young women ages 17-30. She frequently speaks at area schools, domestic violence shelters and other organizations to encourage young women to pursue their dreams no matter their past. While her target audience is young women, the message of encouragement is for everyone! For booking information visit: www.assignedtoencourage.com.
All written materials are the original work of the author. Copyright restricted. All rights reserved. Scripture is taken from the Holy Bible various versions.
Be Encouraged is a publication of Assigned to Encourage!™ Design and layout provided courtesy of Integrity Designs
Stress, Baggage and Burdens are one in the same. Be Encouraged! Set your priorities and release your cares for true relief!