Monday, November 24, 2008


When the Savior walked and taught upon the earth, He often gave the people visual images that would help them remember Him. For example, instead of simply saying, “I will help you,” the Savior told the people, “Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls” (Matthew 11:29). The people then knew what a yoke looked like. They saw one often, and saw animals yoked together working in the fields. After hearing the Savior tell them to take His yoke upon them, they would have thought of that every time they saw a yoke. Thus the image would serve as a reminder, something to help keep their hearts healthy.

I only see yokes in museums, and when I ask my students if they know what a yoke is, most of them don’t have a clue. Pictured here is a yoke for oxen. It keeps the oxen working side by side and the load that needs to be pulled is attached to the yoke so that the animals share in the work of pulling the burden. It is a beautiful image to remember—that when we are yoked with Jesus Christ he helps pull our load. (In my case, He often pulls ALL the load and me!)

Since I don’t see yokes on a daily basis to help me remember this concept, I’ve associated the idea with something I do see daily—my refrigerator. This may sound strange, but it works for me. I have a side-by-side refrigerator/freezer that work together to preserve food for my family. When I look at it, I think about myself working side-by-side with my Savior. I am never alone. He is always there. It reminds me that if I’ll just do my part of the job, the Savior will do the rest. We are in this together. How can I fail when He is helping me?

It is amazing how making an association like that can help you though a day. If the refrigerator image doesn’t work for you, associate something you see every day with something the Savior said and then let it remind you every time you see it of Him and His promises. You’ll be surprised what encouragement this will give you. That is one way to find “rest to our souls.”


Wendi said...

I love the refrigerator example. We have a side-by-side as well, so that will be helpful to me. Hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving with your family. :)

The Edwards Family said...

Oh Dr Sis Johnson that is my favorite passage of scripture! thank you for the image it makes it so clear! You are just wonderful hope your thanksgiving turkey is tender! love

Connie said...

I love how you take something as simple as a refridgerator and make an analogy out of it! I love reading your posts for inspiration.
Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family!

Rebecca said...

Can I comment on the yoke thing? We were at the fair once, watching A competition where teams of horses pulled wieghts to see who could pull the most weight. Teams of 2 horses were yoked together and on command they would lunge forward. Some of the teams would lunge together, and some would not be in unison. The teams that pulled unevenly (one horse would leap forward, then the other, rather than at the same time), could not pull as much weight as the horses that were together. It brought home to me that we need to be evenly yoked- pulling together to be successful.

Sherrie Mills Johnson said...

Rebecca, Thank you for what you added. Your comment helps me "see" more what it means to be yoked with Christ.