burdens [and a little gift]

i have a little habit. when life starts getting out of hand, i like to make it worse. i'm honestly not sure if it's my own mind, or the enemy planting lies [probably a combination of both], but i will grab onto a tiny little lie and grow it and twist and chew on it until i'm caught up in a full on stronghold. a spiraling episode, i call it.

in high school, when i wasn't as aware of what was actually happening, i called it "letting my imagine run wild". i'd come up with scenarios and play out the entire thing to its logical, or illogical, bitter end. a disaster really. a crisis of the mind. a crisis of belief.

lately i'd been doing really well when it comes to these episodes, meaning they were becoming fewer and further between. but recently life started feeling heavy. for awhile, i put one foot in front of the other and waded through it. but then i got blindsided.

you can call me crazy, but i believe the enemy gives me dreams sometimes. terrible, destructive, life-sucking dreams. he'll bring up all the stuff that i do my best to swallow and hide on a daily basis. things i push down, deep into the darkest corners of my mind. he'll just sweep them all up into a cyclone and shove it into one powerful dream for me. i wake up believing that whatever i've just dreamt actually happened. that's how real they feel, and that's how relevant they are.

so i had one of these dreams. and a few harmless comments from my husband coupled with a bad hair day and nothing to wear and intense sleep deprivation? cue a spiraling episode.

i never tell people about these days. i just deal with them silently and cry in the car and eventually ask God to intervene and pull me out. and He always does. the damage is reckless, but the lessons are also many. there was a season of my life where this occurred daily, and for good reason. but it's been very infrequent lately, so i was caught off guard.

i knew that i need a heavy dose of Truth to combat all the lies i was feasting on. so i grabbed a few devotionals and my Bible and headed outside. this passage below is precisely what i opened to, in my Streams in the Desert devotional:
A prominent believer once told of his mother, who was a very anxious and troubled Christian. He would often talk with her for hours, trying to convince her of the sinfulness of worrying, but to no avail. She was like the elderly woman who once said that she had suffered a great deal, especially from the troubles that never came.

Then one morning his mother came to breakfast with a smile adorning her face. He asked her what had happened, and she began describing a dream she had in the night. In her dream, she was walking along a highway with a large crowd of people, all of whom seemed very tired and burdened. The people were all carrying little black bundles, and she noticed that the bundles were being dropped along the way by these repulsive-looking creatures that seemed quite demonic in nature. As the bundles were dropped, the people stooped down to pick them up and carry them.

Like everyone else in her dream, she also carried her needless load, being weighted down with the Devil's bundles. After a while, she looked up and saw a Man whose face was loving and bright as He moved through the crowd, comforting the people. Finally He came to her, and she realized it was her Savior. She looked at Him, telling Him how tired she was, and He smiled sadly and said, "My dear child, these bundles you carry are not from me, and you have no need of them. They are the Devil's burdens, and they are wearing out your life. You need to drop them and simply refuse to touch them with even one of your fingers. They you will find your path easy, and you will feel as if ' I carried you on eagles' wings' [Ex. 19:4]."

with each passing line, i knew this was divinely appointed. i knew it was what God had for me that day. i began to nod and "amen" and cry out to God to toss my burdens far from me. to give me the strength and discernment to leave them sitting there, instead of picking them up and kneading them in my mind. i decided to act. i texted my husband that i loved him. i picked up my daughter from preschool and took her to an impromptu starbucks date. i just wanted to love my people instead of focusing on myself. i truly did feel lighter, almost instantly. that doesn't always happen but it was like i asked God to do it, gave Him permission, and then decided to feel the lightness of the self-inflicted burden lifted.

He is faithful, that's all there is to it. we just have to give Him the space to act by agreeing with Him. and when He acts, it's like nothing else in human experience.

cast your burdens, friends. drop them right where you are. He's already got you in the palm of His hand, so He's already carrying that burden too. no reason for you to shoulder it yourself. just cast it off.

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as much as i'm on my phone, i thought a lockscreen would help me remember. so i made this for me and you. it's fitted for the iPhone. simply visit my blog on your phone and take a screen shot, then make that photo your lockscreen. two options, aqua or chalkboard :)


  1. Definitely needed to hear this today. <3

  2. The looks I'm getting right now....

    I'm a sappy mess; blotting my raccoon eyes with my sleeve and finding Jesus at a table for two at Biggby.

    to say you've blessed me with this is an understatement. I just want to hug you right now for being obedient to the call to write this.


  3. Thanks for the free iphone wallpapers ~ what a nice gift on a Monday! :)

  4. thanks so much for the wallpaper! i put it as my screen saver on my desktop. (i don't have a smartphone). it looks great! :)

  5. I really really wish you lived closer so we could share coffee and our hearts. I can absolutely relate to this. Thank you for reminding me that faith is an ACTION. Much of my own inner turmoil is in me to just cast off. I was just reading that in Matthew today - cast your cares and I will give you REST. Spiritual rest.

    Just THANK YOU for this!!!

  6. Gah, amazing. Love this. Love you. Loved chatting and seeing your sweet face today!

  7. Thanks SO MUCH lovely lady!!! Definitely snagging this for my phone! xo

  8. just.what.i.needed.... truly.
    thank you for this.
    thank you thank you thank you