Archive of ‘Holy Yoga’ category

It’s a Get To

By Brooke

steady as a post

There are some days when I can’t believe Holy Yoga is my job. I mean if you can call living your dream a job. Today is one of those days.

When I opened facebook and saw the above post this morning, I wept. Initially I thought it was because of the beauty captured in the photo. Maybe it was the verse. Or maybe it was because the photographer and the model both happen to be my life long sisters.

But aesthetic beauty, while it evokes soul-stirring, it never brings tears like these. These kind of tears come from a knowing of the soul, not just a stirring of it. I re-read the verse and it hit me like a ton of bricks. I wept (and wept) because this is what He has done for me in Holy Yoga.

I have had to hold on for dear life to my God on my mat as He has ripped my heart open and laid it bare before His alter.               I have had to cling to the hope of my next breath as He has His was with the one in my lungs.  I have had to repent. I have had to forgive other. I have had to forgive myself. I have had to see things for the first time. And the last time.I have had to stay still when all I wanted to do is run. And I have had to run when I was used to being crushed by the same old weight and sick thinking.

I realized my weeping this morning was not that of a woman buried under the weight of her own sin, but that of a woman who’s mourning had turned into joyous singing. Whose God has held her and made her steady as a post. A woman who may not know who she is at times but knows exactly who her God is.

I wept this morning because He has done great things for me, both on and off my mat. I wept this morning with great anticipation because I know He will do it again. I wept this morning because I am grateful He is not done with me and loves to save me. He is not at all offended by my desperation. In fact He can’t wait to hold me and comfort me and to transform me into the likeness of His beloved Son.

That is My God. This is His ministry and this is my get to. That is why I wept.

I pray that God will give grace and abundance to His ministry of Holy Yoga so that more people know this kind of love affair with their King. Will you join me in praying for Holy Yoga? That it would swell by the outpouring of His life changing Spirit? Would you pray fiercely with me for this kind of revival?

Hold on for dear life and He will hold you steady you as a post. No matter where, when or how. Our God is faithful.

Kingdom Community

By Brooke

week two

Blessed are the pure in heart for they will see God.

In preparing for participating the International Christian Wellness Conference, I have been pondering the idea of culture. Here are some thoughts.

What makes an authentic community? I mean, I think I know. Transparency, honesty, grace, and acceptance are all at the top of my list. The word authentic is found only twice in scripture, and its in the Message. Once in John 7 and another time in Philippians 4:8. In Paul’s charge, the word authentic is used in lieu of the word pure. So an authentic community is one that has its anchor in purity? That’s dangerous.

There are few things more controversial than individual choices and definitions of purity. Purity is an individual right, right? It’s our personal right to act, or not act in a particular way. The consequences are ours alone, right? Especially if we manage to keep others from knowing if, when, and where we fall short of purity.

Purity (like the rest of the Lord’s instruction) is not to take away joy, but to invite us into more of it. Jesus tells us this is how we should pray. He instructs us to get away with God; to find a quiet, secluded place so we wont be tempted to role play before God. Just to be there as simply and honestly as we can manage. He says that it’s in that space that our focus will shift from ourselves to God and we will begin to sense His grace. (Matthew 5:8 NIV)

Do you see that? The very first thing the Lord tells us is to get alone with Him – where we can be authentic. Where we can be seen for exactly who and where we are. Where we come face to face with ourselves in light of who He is. He tells us that that is the BEGINNING of sensing His grace. It’s there that the motives and darkness of our human hearts will be exposed. It’s the heart space that God is interested in because its the place that is deceitful above all things. He’s interested in defining our hearts as ones that are pure and reflect the nature of His Light.

I wonder if my real thirst for community is no longer one defined as “authentic”, but rather one defined as a “Kingdom”. Where everyone takes their place on their knees before the throne of God. Where everyone filters their lives through the colander of His Word. Where everyone is finding out who they are and what they are living for in Light of who Christ says they are. Where obedience is not optional, because the cost of disobedience is too much.

A kingdom community is one where grace is not the exception, but the rule. A kingdom people are ones who know the space where grace begins, and are not afraid.

What do you think defines authentic community?

vivid

Introducing The Light Banner!

By Stephanie

200x200 TLB Button

get to be a part of something new.

The get to is a fairly new perspective for me; a perspective born from a relationship with God. I mean, I have a lot going on. I have a very busy life. I have a marriage, three growing children, and a ministry. There are a lot of things that I have to do and very few I can elect not to do.

Enter stage left, The Light Banner. When the opportunity presented itself, I knew I couldn’t opt into another have to. So I sought. I asked. I was quiet.

And He answered. The Light Banner was an invitation to a get to. It was an invitation to participate in my own formation formally with Christ. It was an opportunity to do the things He has been asking me to do. It was not a have to, but a get to.

Here’s the thing that I LOVE about The Light Banner. It is a place where I can be. Its a place where my being with, and in, Christ is actually MORE important that my doing for Him. Its a place where I can tap into the essence of who He is and in turn find out more about who I AM in Him. And isn’t that what He wants? Isn’t that what the gospel is all about? Isn’t that what  what I have been created for?

The Light Banner is a place where we allow God the space He needs in us so we in turn find out who we are and what we are living for. We are Light Bearers. 

Here is what I know about His Light. In order to be a light bearer we have to be a lightdweller. To dwell is to abide and to abide is to have everything you need without striving for more. In Christ, we are all invited to be light bearers because God, through Christ, has invited us to abide and dwell in His light.

In Genesis 1, God says  In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. God saw that the light was good, and he separated the light from the darkness.

God separated the light from the dark. He sets apart the things that reflect His glory. He separates. He draws the things set apart into Himself in order that they know that He is good and that in Him, they are good.

The word Light in Genesis is the Hebrew word ‘owr’. It literally means the light of day, dawning, light of life, light of prosperity, and light of instruction.

Ok, so I have a confession: I am not the brightest bulb on the Christmas tree. I mean, I get by but I am confident nobody would be calling me brilliant. So here’s my latest Einstein moment. When I was studying the word “bearer” for this blog, I defined barer. That’s right. I cant spell.

The definition of barer is: without covering or clothing; to be naked and without the usual furnishings or content.  Being open to view, unconcealed and undisguised.

Isn’t the Lord good? Even in my immense lack, He makes sense of my nonsense. You see, in order to be a BEARER, we have to be BARE. We have to be women and men who are not afraid of exposure. Not afraid of being open to view, unconcealed and without disguise.

Isn’t that the real definition of being set apart? Being ones who no longer depend on the furnishings of education or status. Pedigree or pursuit. Mind or matter. Ones who care less about the contents of our bank accounts and more about the contents of our mouths which are the wellsprings of our exposed hearts.

Ephesians 5:13-14 says “But everything exposed by the light becomes visible—and everything that is illuminated becomes a light. This is why it is said: “Wake up, sleeper, rise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you.”

Light always exposes. Christ is the Light of Life that draws the sleeper to wake.

God is not afraid of the dark. Just like in Genesis, He hovers over the dark with His creative intention for light. He breathes and speaks and creates as a reflection of His light out of the darkness.

He awakens the sleepers.

Come awake with me Beloveds.

Let us stand together under the banner of His Light.

It’s a get to. 

God’s Initiating Love

By Stephanie

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Holy Yoga Retreat #16 is in the bag. I think it was #16. I lose
count. Not because I don’t care or that they get in any way less
significant, but because I tend to follow closely the things I can
take credit for…and there are very few things that are Holy Yoga
retreats that I can take credit for. Very few.

It was Holy. Set apart for the express intent of meeting and engaging the Lord.

It was yoga. Meditation, Breath and Movement. All with the hope of meeting Him.

And He came. In full measure.

The first night, we committed to doing the week “alone together.” We
offered our time to the Lord as individuals who happened to be on the
same journey for a week.  We committed to showing up every day to
every session, whether we felt closest in or furthest out. We
committed believing that the Word and His Spirit were our anchor for
the week. That we would place them above any emotion. Any revelation.
Any disappointment. Any fear and All deliverance.

And He came. In full measure.

Somewhere along the way, I am not sure where, but I was overcome. I
suppose it was because He came. Yes, that’s it. He came. He always
does. Not in some creepy way as though He was sneaking up on me. But
in presence. The kind of presence that when He  comes you can not help
but be drawn by Him. By His love. By His patience. By His grace.

Holy Yoga is the vehicle that He has chosen for such a time as this to
minister to my heart. So I get it. I get what each and every one of
those who are with me this week experienced. I get it. Even 7 years
in, I get it. He is always new. It’s the Gospel way. The old becomes
new when He comes.

In full measure.

God loves with an initiating love. A love that never quits. A love
that says I don’t love you because you make me happy, but because I
choose to love you. I choose. You. It’s what the bible calls an
a’havah kind of love. A love that says “I see all of your crazy. All
of your nasty. All of your falling gravely short. AND I STILL CHOOSE
YOU.”

We don’t love like that. Ok, I DONT LOVE LIKE THAT.  I realized this
week that while I don’t love like that NOR do I know how to…the Lord
loves me like that and today Him loving me without any action in
return in enough. I can’t give if I have never received. So today I
receive. Things unmerited. Love I am unworthy of. Patience that
propels me into not more of myself, but more who i was created to be.

I learned this week about who I was created to be. Whose image I have
been fashioned out of. I learned about brokenness. I learned about
redemption. I learned about recovery. I learned that I (and you) are
wholly and dearly loved.

He came. In full measure.

God never holds back. His fullness, at least to the capacity in which
we are able to receive, is always available to us. Always. All ways. I
suppose its just a matter of perception. Or obedience. Perhaps they
are one and the same.

On the other side of #16, I say a simple thing. Thank you. Thank you
Lord for showing up. Thank you for taking all the credit. Thank you
for letting us all off the hook and for the ability to travel lightly.

He said in the beginning of the week “It is for freedom I have set you
free. Stand firm then and be careful not to take on another yoke of
slavery.” Fellow #16’s, we live a gospel life. One where we are always
before Him. Always in process. Firm and secure and conscious of the
yokes that threaten to bind.

And we petition. We ask. We plead. We pray…

Come. In full measure.

He will never disappoint for He can never disown Himself. He will hold
both sides of the covenant. He will when we can’t. He will simple
because it’s His will.

I will never forget this week. I may forget the number, but I will
never forget a name, or a face, because together we fought for
freedom.

And won.

Holy Yoga Instructor Training Retreat

By Stephanie

Last week was a full week of Holy Yoga Instructor Training Retreat. These retreats are ridiculously beautiful. Anyone who has participated can tell you that it is a life changing experience.

The really awesome thing is that Brooke has moved into teaching the Bible Study portion of retreats. She’s called to this, people. Brooke is a student of the Word. She is always reading, always being moved and shaped by what God speaks to her. Even yesterday, her little Brynn said, “NO ONE loves Jesus more than my mom.” Sweet girl. Don’t you love her little gentle heart being shaped by her mama’s love for Jesus?

Brooke loves Jesus in a way that radiates from her. She is always, always loving people in a way that goes far beyond my own understanding. She offers a space of grace while simultaneously leaning into deep truth.

I remember Brooke telling me once that, in the height of her pre-Jesus success, one of her students excitedly told Brooke that she had found Jesus. Brooke responded with, “Don’t limit yourself to one book.” Brooke tells that story with such appreciation for what Jesus has done for her. She is a TEACHER of that one book now. She lives and breathes it’s depth and healing mercy.

Thank God for the Book. Thank God for the people who live it.

Keep hanging out here – the recordings from Bible Study at this past retreat will be available soon.

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