HEAVY BURDENS–the ideal–how I mess it up–consequences–PRACTICAL STEPS

It would be so easy if I could find and share the one clear answer to each question. However, what God’s will and way in any given situation is often a balance and requires me to keep my eyes on Jesus, listen to the Holy Spirit, remember that I will probably never see the full picture or find the perfect balance but I already have worth and dignity and security and God is able to bless my imperfect efforts. This must not be an excuse to be careless or lazy but rather a focus to keep me from being tense while I try. Just as a student with a master or a child with a parent needs to try their best and learn and grow but knows that the teacher or parent is on their side and will guide them and make up for their shortfall. Especially important with driving instructors.

Some ideas to turn “burdens” into the opportunities that God intends them to be, (for we are His workmanship created in Christ Jesus unto good works that he prepared for us and us for).

  1. Start your day the night before. The Jewish day began at sundown. Look back on the day and thank God for  a. what He HAS HELPED you do, b. thank Him for the people he HAS PLACED in your life and for the grace he gave you to interact with them in a positive way, also stop and be grateful for anything others have done for you or just evidence of God working in them (positive character qualities), c. thank Him for the things He HAS GIVEN you and stop and savor them for a moment, d. Thank Him for who YOU ARE warts blemishes struggles and all especially including things about you that are just given and are part of God’s design of you. (age,sex,family of origin, height, IQ, time in history,etc.) Thank Him for the things about you and your support system that could change but are out of your control, take what you can do something about and acknowledge the current reality, thank God that He likes you anyhow and ask for grace to change and grow but don’t try to resent yourself into growth.
  2. Promise God that the very first thing you will do when you wake up is take a few minutes to praise Him.
  3. When you finish praising Him, put on the whole armor of God. My understanding of this is that I need to REMIND myself of the positional truths of who I am in Christ. First put on the helmet by remembering that you are saved from sin’s penalties and power. Second remember that you live in a world of truth not just fluctuating educated guesses. Sharpen up your awareness of this truth through reading the Word. Third remember that you face the devil’s accusations by referring all attackers to Jesus who seems to like you and whose righteousness is sufficient to compensate for whatever the attack is about. You might think or say, “your attack makes sense to me because I am aware that I am the chief of sinners and without Christ I can do nothing, but take it up with God who disagrees with both of us and thinks that I am worth an infinite amount and I rest in His righteousness so why don’t you attack that?” Fourth we can go out into the filth and struggles of life because our efforts are worthwhile because we carry the message that eternal life is available for free to all and we do have this gospel of peace.
  4. During the day– take up the shield of faith: so what is faith? It is the type of belief that compels me to act even though I fear that I will botch everything, look like a fool, lose all I have (He is no fool who lets go of what he doesn’t really have to gain what he can’t lose) be thought ill of etc. Besides, it seems unfair and impossible. So I find motivation to obey anyhow because His ways really couldn’t be worse than mine and I owe Him everything. I yield my body parts according to a growing picture of God’s ways in action, then leave the results to Him and get a good night sleep. Taking up the shield involves reminding myself of what God has done in the recent past and picturing the positional reality that (contrary to emotions and some slips) I am dead to sin and alive to God. Watchman Nee shares how he made everything a burden by getting up in the morning and purposing to act dead to sin and alive to God. Then at the end of the day he would beat himself up for his shortfall. After fasting praying and giving up on figuring out the healthy balance, God came to him and said, “you can’t kill dead people” how would you ever figure out when the corpse had been properly deaded? What technique would be sufficient? Instead he got up thanking God for the fact that he was already dead to sin and alive to God and improved his picture of these two states and found grace to rest in the accomplishments of God.
  5. Then there is the sword! This is the spoken word, spoken in song, spoken in prayer and spoken out loud but spoken practically and clearly. When tempted Jesus responded with a verse, when tempted the second time he responded with a verse, when the devil tempted him again and used a verse to back up his temptation Jesus responded with a more appropriate verse. The better you know the word the more accurate the tool but no one becomes a skilled sword fighter instantly. Do remember that it is not enough to pary the temptations we must thrust back or the devil will have no motivation to quit and sooner or later we will get poked. So when attacked, pray for you pastor or someone else, pray that God’s kingdom will thrive and the devil’s be defeated. Command him to leave in Jesus name. That is the first and easiest place to start with sword-fighting. I know of a missionary in the swamps of Borneo who broke a local taboo and was then attacked by a screaming demon. He froze and was sinking in the mire when he thought, ” I don’t know what they taught about this in seminary but greater is he that is in me than he that is in the world!” He cried out the nave of Jesus and the demon was silenced and peace came to the jungle and freedom to his next effort to evangelize. Don’t forget to sing speaking to yourself in songs and hymns and spiritual songs and making melody in your heart. Watch your “inner chatter” and pray without ceasing. It is good to set time aside but also talk constantly with your Lord.
  6. End of day go back to step 1.

HEAVY BURDENS–ideal–how I mess it up–CONSEQUENCES–practical

We need to : be mindful;   see with God’s eyes;   feel as He does;   yield our members;    cast it all on the Lord;     grab the next piece of life;    repeat till time for sleep;   let it all go and sleep well;   get up and repeat till we see Christ.

To that extent that we don’t come at life this way we:

  1. Miss opportunities, miss out on God’s power, find ourselves CIRCLING on the details of the past or reviewing all the possible problems of the future.
  2. Like Peter, we focus on the “lower realities” and take our eyes off the Lord and start to sink. Yes there were waves and wind and he did know friends who had drowned in similar storms–“but so what?” We see only the negatives of what we have or haven’t done or what others have or haven’t done. We may even “see” what isn’t, so are overwhelmed.We put our own hate of self higher than God’s love of us, we “remember” all our failures and blow them up bigger than God’s grace. Or, if we are bitter, we blow the others’ misdeeds out of proportion and minimize our problem. Then our plans and responses will not work because they are to vague or just don’t fit reality. God can’t forgive and cleanse and fix our watered down or blown out of proportion view of things.
  3. Instead of blessed passion and drive, our feelings are either squashed out and our lives lack energy and we do not see opportunities or our sin OR we lump all our feeling together and just feel “terrible” or  angry or  depressed. That would be like stepping on a nail and having a vague ache all over or a tooth ache. This would feel miserable and give us excuse to moan and groan but would not help us identify the nail in the foot and have it removed and the damage fixed. So we go on damaging ourselves and others and feeling hurt and bitter, confused as to why things go so badly. It is also sad that, if we squash out our uncomfortable feelings or wallow in the misery, we also squash out love, joy, peace, contentment, etc.
  4. We may become hyper-logical and are always quoting the original Hebrew yet avoiding obedience to the simple obvious truth, or thinking that when we think through what is happening and what one should do, it is the same as actually doing something.  We may fill our brains with ways that seem right–yet the end is death. We may use our logic to put others down and be sarcastic and demeaning. We may refuse to think and depend on pastors and others to do all our thinking which leads to cultism or just to not being able to think under stress. (God loves Bereans who listen and go to the Word and think for themselves.)
  5. We may refuse to DO THE LITTLE WE CAN because it would make no difference. (Nothing you or I will ever do will be sufficient to fix anything but it is the place God jumps in and makes it work, thus preserving His sovereignty and our free will) We may do everything ourselves without asking for help and thus burn out. We may do things without checking God’s word.
  6. We may continue to fuss and go round and round on the problem after we have done our part and feel that fussing is doing, that fussing will fix something or find a solution.

The resulting conditions?: BURN OUT, NUMB OUT, WEAR OUT

Burn out comes from spending our Serotonin, Nor-epinephrine and Dopamine faster than we can replace it. If you buy a car and decide that water looks a lot like gasoline and is a lot cheaper, so you fill the tank with water; don’t call up the designer and complain it won’t run on water. You are designed to have enough Serotonin Norepi and Dopamine to handle today’s evil if you sleep peacefully, eat well, exercise and handle situations with help from God and others,  and casting all your burdens on Christ. Consequence? You will be too anxious, tearful, despairing, irritable, withdrawn, overwhelmed etc (serotonin calms passion) and you will not be able to turn off the feeling when you realize that it is excessive. You will not be able to concentrate, organize, plan, gather resources and in general to think. You will not feel like doing things and will make yourself but find no joy or satisfaction, all will be pointless and boring and you will dread the thought of doing the same over and over and over.

Numb out comes from the constant dumping out of Glutamate which is supposed to alert the cortex. Instead the cortex gets tired of the constant alerts and stops listening  So we begin to shut out the world around us and go into fantasy worlds or just focus on our own misery.

Wear out comes from constant dumping of adrenaline and cortisol into the blood and results in practically every illness known to man. When God promised to keep the Israelis well, that was a conditional promise based on them resting in Him. Deuteronomy 7:15

The resulting attitudes: bitterness, greed, lust, pessimism, distrust etc.

So how do we cooperate with the Holy Spirit to move from our ways to His ways? tune in next time for a couple ideas.

MY HEAVY BURDENS –ideal–HOW I MESS IT UP–consequences–practical

The Lord asks me to bind my pride to the horns of the altar as a sweet sacrifice (To keep it from jumping off). I have always felt that the greatest humility is to quit trusting my own brain  and instead realizing that: if His thoughts are not my thoughts, and His thoughts are correct, then I must indeed be insane (the missperception or reality). The higher my IQ the greater,deeper, more complex my insanity; the more my ways seem right but the end is death!

. Challenges in life, by God’s grace, should be a blessing, a source of purpose, growth, reliance on God and his word and his people. What changes these challenges from a blessed light burden into a heavy crushing burden is INIQUITY.

What is iniquity? Deciding for myself what is right and wrong and trying to do this right in my own strength, then moaning and groaning about how hard it was: So that I might brag about being the right one, about being strong, and that I might be admired for my sacrifice.

Jesus didn’t do this even though He had the right to, the right to think on his own and do on his own and complain about the task. Unlike Him, we, like the little children we are( I John 2:1), think about and are anxious about and busy about:

1.We make situations overwhelming by making them too important, by attaching our significance to the outcome or to doing things perfectly, by not asking for help or by dumping on ourselves when we do.What do I want? What do I think would work? What am I strong enough to handle? Here, let me I do it! I will be the judge. Don’t tell me what to do or how to do it, I can figure it out for myself. I wonder what people will think of me. I will plan my path and do the works I decide are best. If it doesn’t feel good, if it doesn’t please me, why should I do it?

2.Or we might just turn off our brain and see nothing think nothing and do nothing feel nothing and blame others make excuses and bury ourselves in video games or trivial business and then complain about how badly life is treating us.

3.We might focus on everyone else’s problems and care about them and try to fix them and even sacrifice ourselves trying to help them, so that we don’t have to look at ourselves. After all if we can fix everyone else then we must be OK, right? Maybe this is what I Cor 13 means when we can give our mind, money , flesh and lives and have it mean nothing without AGAPE love. True love must look to the other’s welfare, in part, by letting the God of ALL comfort,reprove you, correct you, comfort you and equip and strengthen you so that you may point others to the same source of healing. But it always involves letting the Holy Spirit search you and help you know your own reality.

4.We circle round and round trying to find a solution. We make things bigger than we can carry by not sharing them with the Lord and the people He puts in our life. We attach our right to like ourselves to the outcome. We look anxiously into the future, rehash the past, fuss with what is elsewhere that we can do nothing about.

5.We drive ourselves with self-criticism calling ourselves ugly names questioning if we are even saved, even yelling at ourselves for failure to rest in grace better. We compare with how we used to do or with how we thought our lives would go or with how others seem to be doing.

6. We worry about the future, circle round and round reviewing the details of the past, fuss with what is going on elsewhere.

7. We stuff our feelings refuse to allow God to show himself bigger than our past. We refuse to look at what happened for fear that God can’t handle it and we would have to quit playing religion. We procrastinate hoping problems will go away or we will be more competent tomorrow.

MY HEAVY BURDENS–ideal–how I mess up–CONSEQUENCES–practical  THEN WE BURN OUT   

We may wonder why we burn out and even get upset at God for not backing up our willful ways and keeping us from wearing out.(TUNE IN FOR CONSEQUENCE AND PRACTICAL RESPONSE ON THE NEXT BLOG)





HEAVE YOUR HEAVY BURDENS ON HIM He really does care for you. THE IDEAL

Lets consider our tendency to grab each piece of life and turn it into a burden that crushes by taking responsibility on myself to figure it all out fix it in my own strength deciding what is best and worrying how the result will make me look and feel.

Let me review two useful tools. ( It is my prayer and hope that you will memorize and use these tools so that when the enemy attacks you will be equipped to, having done all to be able to stand, stand!)

Purpose of the tools: study the word in such a way that it will teach reprove instruct in righteousness and equip for ministry:


Take any question or situation, go to the word, ask the Holy spirit to open it to you, then ask

1. How would I act if I got out of God’s way and let Him do it his way?

2. How do I,apart from God’s help, yield my members (be specific) to doing the opposite of God’s way?

3. What have been the results, what fruit had I then,Romans :21 and the end is death. What are the promised results of doing it God’s way?

4. Then, lastly, What are the practical steps of obedience that will allow me to get out of God’s way and let the life that I now live in the flesh be lived by the faith of Jesus and not by my faith in myself.

The key to getting rid of burdens is to quit wanting what I naturally want and start wanting what God wants. I must have told my children a thousand times while raising them, “be where you are at, enjoying what you have been given, grateful to the giver, trusting the giver to know what is best.” It is OK to ask God for things while leaving the answer in his hands. He will give me the desire of my heart if my delight is HIM!

Today I will look at the IDEAL then on the next blog HOW I MESS IT UP and consequences then one the following PRACTICAL STEPS towards the ideal. We will consider the difference between heavy burdens  that crush and light burdens that build and strengthen.

Let’s look unto Jesus the author and keeper and finisher of our faith. Lets cons:

Matt26:39-42 “if it be possible let this cup pass from me: O my father, if this cup may not pass away from me, except I drink it, thy will be done”

John 5:19 The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do

John 5:30 as I hear, I judge which is just because I seek the will of the Father

John 8:28 as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things.

John8:50 I seek not my own glory

John 14:10 the Father that dwelleth in me He doeth the works

John17:4 I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do.

Romans 15:3 For even Christ pleased not himself:

Hebrews 5:8 Though he were a Son yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered

Hebrews 10:7-9 Then said (Jesus) Lo I come to do thy will O God, (Not to do sacrifice and burnt offerings which are offered by the law) I come to do ehy will O God. (Thus removing the law and replacing it with loving God and seeking His will in a living relationship)

Tool #2: Read these verses and ask 1. What does it say? 2. How does it reprove me, how do I do the opposite of Jesus’ example? 3. What is my gut reaction when I consider living according to this truth? 4.Since it is truth, how should I then live?


Recently I watched a child react to a simple request to share an idea with those who love him most. His mind shut down at the terror of sharing a simple thought that they would be judgmental. Then I was listening to a tape on children who develop anxiety disorders and it shared a series of steps that produce and worsen anxiety. I then set to pondering and understanding that we all go through these steps.

There are none that FREAKETH-NOT! It is simply a matter of you and I identifying our own powerful tool for punishing anyone who dares to try and help us grow. The FREAKING can be gentle, as in my own case.  When the Lord uses scripture or circumstances or others to push me to confront someone but am sure they will freak out at me and nothing will change. Instead of obeying no matter the cost,  I just go and clean house and get quiet and take care of the thing that I needed to have them take care of, and then grumble inside and detail the others faults and maybe even bellyache to someone else about the situation with no intent of doing the confronting God asks


  1. I become aware that I am a sinner as evidenced by responses to life that are sinful
  2. I go to God the father and ask Him to forgive me and adopt me on the basis of Jesus finished work on the cross.
  3. Now I am forgiven and His child, but I still have the old response patterns and the Holy Spirit begins to help me notice and reprogram my habit responses to triggers.
  4. This makes me uncomfortable, so I seek to avoid the people and situations the Holy Spirit arranges in His attempt to help me grow.
  5. He uses life and others to confront me and I drive them off by FREAKING OUT.
  6. They back off and I go back to pretending that I am fine, “Isn’t it all under the blood old things have passed away and everything has become new so I shouldn’t have to work with Him to change?”
  7. Scripture becomes useless, for ALL scripture reproves.
  8. Relationships become superficial or just nonexistent since all real relationships need to say,” Hey you are stepping on my toes ouch!”
  9. Witness vanishes because the other sees our flaws and denial and concludes that god and religion are pointless as, after all, they are better than we. ( The only witness that works is, “I am the chief of sinners and am forgiven by grace and not works and God is working on me but has a ways to go, so He could surely love and forgive and help you grow also.)
  10. We see our own flaws in others and tend to over criticise them (after all a good offence is the best defense right?)  or else compare ourselves favorably.

Parents of anxious children are culpable in worsening the problem by arrainging their lives to avoid pushing the child to grow  in order to prevent their freakouts.

By FREAK OUT, I mean choices that punish the caring confronter and push them to back off and give up. Examples I have watched in myself and others: Blow up at the begining of a contact to establish “I am the fault finder not you” and then quickly back up with the implied threat that “I can always go back to freaking out if you confront me”.  Asking questions in a judgemental tone, adopting a hard expression when someone wants to discuss a situation, make sure you do even less if confronted for not doing enough and if confronted on this say ” well you told me I wasn’t doing it well, yelling and attacking the one who cares enough to voice concern, then promptly forgetting or minimizing what you did, going silent for a long time, walking out on them, quitting, badmouthing them to others, agreeing with the feedback they promptly forgetting and changing nothing, doing things as asked in such a way that they wish you hadn’t done it at all.

The freak-outer thinks that their technique has worked because everything quiets down, but this is a cause and effect world what we sow we reap. Anything else would make God a fool and he will not be made a fool of.  One of the saddest verses is God gave them their request  and sent leanness into their soul. Psalm 106:15

Whats’ healthy? Let scripture reproove, ask for and consider and apply and reward negative feedback. Draw towards those who care enough to confront, don’t say “thanks” and even apply the feedback and then avoid the person. Share how you have applied the advice and ask for further ideas. When confronted say: Thank you for coming to me directly; Are you saying———?; I am trying to grow and have a blind spot there; do you have any suggestions on how to grow; I will let you know how I am doing and have tried the following already; could you hold me accountable.

I think that you can clearly see that such a response would cause the world to sit up and see our Holy Spirit driven good works and conclude there must be a God and give Him his glory due.


Deuteronomy 5:29 O that there were such an heart in them, that they would fear me, and keep all my commandments always, that it might be well with them, and with their children for ever! —-“Do I fear for my grandchildren and great-grandchildren in this crazy world. Never fear that, says the Lord, fear me and I will bless them in the midst of the warfare.”

Deuteronomy 17:20That his heart be not lifted up above his brethren, and that he turn not aside from the commandment, to the right hand, or to the left: to the end that he may prolong his days in his kingdom, he, and his children, in the midst of Israel. “Do I resent the struggles of life and fear the ravages of old age? Lord help me to lift up my brethren and keep your laws so that I might delight in this life for as long as you choose to leave me here.”

2 Kings 10:30 Because thou hast done well in executing that which is right in mine eyes, and hast done unto the house of Ahab according to all that was in MINE HEART,thy children of the fourth generation shall sit on the throne of Israel.—“I should not think my own thoughts or ponder and imagine my own goals in my heart, but ask the Holy Spirit to help me discern God’s heart.”

2 Kings 22:19Because thine HEART was TENDER and thou hast humbled thyself before the Lord, when thou heardest what I spake against this place, and against the inhabitants thereof, that they should become a desolation and a curse, and hast rent thy clothes, and wept before me; I also have heard thee–“Thank you Lord for being a God who hears little old me. Teach me to have all of my conversation, my walk-and-talk with you.”

1 Chronicles 28:9And thou,  know thou the God of thy father, and serve him with a PERFECT HEART and with a willing mind: for the lord searcheth all HEART, and understandeth all the imaginations of the thoughts: if thou seek him, He will be found of thee; “Don’t forget, seek and I will find Him, ask and I will find Him, if I come to God knowing the He IS and that his very nature is to reward me for seeking him–with Himself!”

2Chronicles 31:21And in every work that he began in the service of the house of God, and in the law, and in the commandments, to seek his God, he did it with ALL HIS HEART, and prospered.– “I have often done service in the kingdom because God is worthy and a blessing to others but have been left a little empty. Now I am trying to serve in His kingdom in order to draw closer to Him and get to know him and sense His love for me.”

2 Chronicles 32: Notwithstanding, he HUMBLED HIS HEART, so that the wrath of the Lord came not upon them. “God would have to apologize to Sodom and Gomorrah if He does not punish the USA. Still I see many of His people who are humbling themselves. I need to join them and plead for my country. Perhaps He might grant on more great awakening that engulfs even the people from every tribe and nation on our shores.”

2 Chronicles 16:9For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to shew himself strong in the behalf of them whose HEART IS PERFECT  TOWARDS HIM.–“He is not only the God who hears, He is the God who sees, not to destroy me or punish me, but to show himself strong into my weakness.  Much more would I then glory in my weakness. (Surely I have much to glory in as the chief of sinners and weakest of saints who am the least) SO when I am weak then I am strong because His strength is make perfect in my weakness.”


President Kennedy stood on the steps of the student union at the University of Michigan and said, “Ask not what your country can do for you, ask instead, what can you do for your country?” This was the opposite of a student demonstrating in Washington DC a few years later holding a sign. “There is nothing worth dying for!” As you know, I sought out and fought for the right to serve in the USAF, having been rejected when I volunteered to serve in Vietnam. It turns out that they have lower standards for doctors than for ordinary soldiers so I got in, despite having had seizures as a child.  I believe that what God has given us in this country, even with all the damage that has been done to it recently, is both worth working to uphold and even worth dying for.

Our  God is vastly more worthy of worship, than even our country. Worship is an old english word for being worth honoring and serving. I remember a missionary that had everything taken away as a prisoner. He was forbidden to preach but, of course, (judge for yourselves whether is is better to obey God or men) preached anyways. He was kept in isolation, fed rotten food, slept on a stone floor with a bucket for a lavatory. He told God that he was OK with all that but he had one even bigger loss. He did not feel God’s presence. He kept asking God to make his presence felt, but nothing happened. Then he thought of all that God had done for him already in giving his own son and saving him and giving him eternal life. He said, “God, if you never give me more than this, not even a sense of your presence, still you are worthy of worship! He set about mechanically praying and praising and singing. Suddenly God filled the room with his presence and soon after had him released.

So many times we serve God for what he does for us and then whine if he isn’t performing up to our expectations. We may berate ourselves for not feeling “high” enough at church but we are really upset at Him for not giving us that “high”. We complain, like the children of Israel in the desert, about our food, lodging, clothes, friends, abilities,ministries, feelings. When you review what God has already done for you, do you experience the peace of loosing all expectations that between now and heaven things have to go a certain way or we will be upset. Inner peace comes from remembering that, if He never did another thing for us–what he has already done would be more than enough.

A few years ago a poorly de-iced plane taking of from Washington DC crashed into the Potomac. The tail was out and a few survivors were swimming in the icy water. They couldn’t climb out but were being rescued one at a time by a helicopter with a basket. A young man kept helping them into the basket. When they returned for him, he was too cold to climb in and drowned. He gave his life for theirs. Can you imagine one of them saying, when asked about appreciation, “Well yeah he saved my life BUT blah blah blah. NO! There is no yes but, only Yes Lord I am all yours period!

Like the missionary, let us set about doing for Him and His kingdom, singing, serving, praying, writing, teaching, reproving, lifting, and in general asking “what can I do to join into His labors on earth?” rather than, “What can He do for me?”

I often feel like the invisible man and want to quit serving or teaching or doing because, as a severe co-dependent I still connect my worth and the worthiness of my labor to others wanting to hang with me and join into the labor , in part, because they like to be around me. When this doesn’t happen, I almost feel like it wasn’t worth doing.

In order to get my focus back where it belongs, I then ask, ” Am I doing what the Lord wants and doing it for others?” Then lighten up remembering that, even if no one else notices, He will be faithful and make something out of my obedience, He enjoys my company, He likes me joining into labor with him in order to get to know Him more.

He  is worthy of my labor for the rest of my years even if, like Jeremiah, no one says “at-a-boy! or “let’s hang out together” I have not yet suffered unto death and believe that if there were nothing worth dying for then there would be nothing worth living for. Since I am willing to die for Him then these other lesser sacrifices should be nothing by comparison. However I have often thought that if someone put a gun to my head and said, “curse God or die!” that would be a simple “OK here I come Lord”. Sometimes dying daily to myself and taking up my cross daily for however long He might choose to leave me seems harder. Praise God, His grace is sufficient.