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Don't Get Yoked!
Letter from the Editor

Yoke- an oppressive agent: an object used to provide bondage.

What is holding you back? Why are you not accomplishing all of your goals? What is stopping you from a meaningful relationship with your spouse? What is it that is restricting your career advancement? What is binding you and limiting your financial success, health or happiness? Is it drugs or alcohol? Is it your family background or financial status? Is it something you did 10 years ago? Is it your poor or negative attitude? Is it a poor decision you made when you were a young adult? Is it your looks or level of education? What is it that is destroying you dreams? What has got you YOKED?

All of us are not succeeding to our fullest potential in some aspect of our lives. We all fall short of our personal best in one area or another, but why? Whatever causes us to fall short of our personal best is our YOKE. As you know, yokes can come in various sizes, shapes and forms and if you don't confront your yokes, they will paralyze your efforts and personal morale and you may never get your dreams back.

How can we break or loosen our yoke? In order to break or loosen your yoke you must consider the following question: Is your yoke a strong, legitimate yoke that truly controls your life, or just a weak, self-inflicted yoke that you are letting control your life?

Before we evaluate the yokes in each other's lives we must acknowledge that there are people with yokes that are strong and legitimate. Many of these yokes are powerful and could restrict and destroy dreams, but the irony is, the people with these legitimate yokes usually refuse to allow them to control their lives. These are the individuals who may have some form of physical or mental disability; they may have even been inflicted with some disease or illness. These individuals usually refuse to give these potentially powerful yokes any power at all.

The yokes that usually get the most power are the ones that are weak, simple, self-inflicted and easily removed. Many of us are letting things from the past, present day misassumption, or issues we bring upon ourselves hinder our chances of success. Have you ever heard people say that they can't achieve their financial dreams because they don't have money? These individuals are yoked by a present day misassumption. Many Americans have adopted that popular saying as their personal creed. Whenever the topic of finances comes up, this phrase comes flying out within the first two minutes of the conversation, and it is totally FALSE! It is a proven fact that most of the millionaires in this great country are self-made. They started with close to nothing.

We all know people who have refused to let go of a mistake they made and went on living the rest of their lives feeling guilty or bitter towards the world. Their 50th birthday comes around and you have no one to invite to their party because they have no friends! They spent the last 30 years of their life bitter and unhappy towards the world because of something that happened in there twenties, which nobody else remembers. We all make mistakes, but that does not mean that we are bad people, we just made a poor decision or two during our lives. You must say sorry, forgive the person, forget about it and move on. Lou Holtz, a legendary football coach, once said, "Happiness is nothing more that having a short memory. I can't remember what happened last week and I feel fine!" Forgive, forget and move on!

I have watched many individuals hang on to guilt and pain for many years. They have used that feeling in negative ways to hinder their dreams and success. They use their yoke as an excuse to lower their standards and self-expectations, they use their yoke as an excuse to take the easy way out, and they use their yoke to get sympathy from others and play the victim role while life and their dreams are passing them by. It is my job to remind those individuals that Jesus Christ, Our Savior, hung and died on a cross bearing all of our sins and mistakes. Be happy and rejoice knowing that your sins are forgiven in His name, and live life again. Bring your yokes to the cross and live your life to the fullest, just as God intended you to. God did not want you to walk around this earth bearing a cross (yoke) of sins and poor decisions, so He sent His Son to bear our cross (yoke) for us. " Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly of heart: and you shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light."- Matthew 11: 29-30.

Keep things in perspective and keep a positive attitude. We all make mistakes, say you are sorry, forget about it and move on. And remember, "Happiness is nothing more than having a short memory." Let go of the past and the misassumption that has been holding you down and focus on the road ahead, because it is that road that will take you where you want to be. Give your yokes to the Lord and stop allowing them to destroy your dreams.

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