whitaker_11-11-16_photo-for-when-your-heart-needs-a-restSo I’ll admit. I love social media. Seeing people’s lives unfold in real time is often fantastic, sometimes sad but mostly really fun. You get to see baby’s right after they are born and share prayers with friends when trouble strikes. Community is what we all crave and thrive on and social media can be such a wonderful bridge for those connections. It’s also a breeding ground for hate filled speech, public bullying and just plain meanness. When you have the veil of a screen it’s easy to say whatever you want without actually seeing the sting in a real person’s face. But it’s not just behind the screen where we see those issues.

It’s easy to get sucked in when a comment hits on a personal scar but everything can be made personal if you have passion for the topic. We want to defend when someone is painting us or something we strongly believe about in a shade of light that is not fair but many times it’s for naught. We only have control over the reaction of our own hearts and sometimes even that feels hard to control. Christians often are mocked for their beliefs. The Bible actually warns of it because it’s to be expected. Satan himself loves when best intentions get turned into something it’s not.

Life can seem so frustrating when you are fighting for good but our hearts become so burdened. I see so many people who do pure and selfless acts in order to help others and receive unnecessary and possibly even hurtful criticism. I have done things with absolute best intentions only to be criticized. It’s hard. It hurts. It makes you want to give up.  Sometimes, our hearts just need rest.

“Come to me, all 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 is light.” (Matthew 11: 28-30)

    Is that not so refreshing? His ways can be easy and light if only you come to Him when you feel burdened and heavy. Prayer can release you of worrying about what other people think of you and, in so many cases, what you think of yourself. In midst of all those negative words thrown around like they don’t hurt, He gives you rest. We are going to face so much opposition in our lives for everything from our jobs, beliefs and the way we look all the way down to the length of our big toes. Rest in knowing that the words on a screen mean nothing, the words on those thin pages and in our prayers are everything.

Mrs. Hannah Whitaker

Mrs. Hannah Whitaker

"Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer" (Romans 12:12 NIV).