“Empty Me” Embodied Prayer

Standard

Many have asked for the motions to “Empty Me” — a circle dance / embodied prayer I lead at retreats and workshops. It is prayed / danced to the song “Empty Me” by Jeremy Camp, a BEaUtiful song about surrendering our selves in order to be filled with his life-giving Spirit. Participants stand (or sit) in a circle facing one another. The motions are simple and repetitive. Participants always remark how powerful this simple movement prayer to music is.

dance-circle-girls Continue reading

Advertisements

Returning to Center: an Embodied Prayer

Standard

embpryretThis is an embodied prayer I created for the Art of Spiritual Direction retreats at which I teach. It is based on the Lakota Native American Four Directions Prayer.

Participants stand in a circle, facing center, where a large cross is placed. You can also Create a Sacred Space like the one pictured at right and use that as your central focal point.

Below is a picture from a YogaFaith training where a beautiful pool of water was our focal point. Serendipitously, we ended up with our hands on both of our neighbors shoulders (at the part of the prayer where we prayer for the person on our left and right). It became a powerful symbolic action of unity and solidarity of purpose.

TSY Center prayer2

Returning to Center: Embodied Scripture Prayer

Continue reading

Poetry as Prayer

Standard

Poetry, both writing and reading, is a wonderfully creative avenue of prayer.

On a beautiful day this past summer, I lay in the hammock behind our lake cabin. As I lay there, held between these two magnificent white pines, I felt held by both the strong, masculine arms of God AND the gentle, feminine arms of God. My poem of prayer featured on ALTARWORK expresses the prayer that developed as I let myself be held by Father-Mother God.

hammock-view

“Hammock View” ||  Read my Poem of Prayer at: http://www.altarwork.com/hammock-view

Continue reading

Rising Into His Glorious Light

Standard

YogaFaith is offering a Dynamic Duo to start 2017 off with intentional time in God’s powerful presence. For the 31-day Be Still Challenge, each day in January, a simple yoga pose is paired with a written meditation to guide you on your journey of getting still before the Lord. I did this challenge last year, and it was a BEaUtiful way to start my year. This year, I am adding a 21-day Daniel fast to my journey. YogaFaith is starting a corporate fast on January 8th. You can find all the details here. Please join us for one or both of these “challenges” as we seek the Lord’s face together through embodied worship.

Today (Day 2 of the Be Still Challenge), after I read through the meditation, I lay in Supported Reclining Bound Angle, pairing it with the song below:

Continue reading

Create-A-Day: your daily dose of creativity #219 — ADVENTure Prayer Walk

Standard

I originally posted this in 2015 as a creative resource for Advent. I wanted to post it here as well as a Creative Spiritual Practice. ADVENTure is a creative and interactive prayer walk to contemplate the reason for the season. Designed to accompany the four weeks of the Advent season, each weekly devotional includes a focus on a “character” of the CHRISTmas story, as well as instructions for a creative or sensory experiential to accompany the meditation. This can be done within a church, ministry, small group, or family context. Kid-friendly and engaging.
This post includes links to all five devotionals and instructions to assist you. If you have any questions, feel free to comment below.
Merry CHRISTmas, Jody

God's Creative Gift -- Unleashing the Artist in You

Advent BabyJesus strawADVENTure is a self-directed prayer walk we did several times at church on our college campus. It includes scriptures and short meditations combined with an activity at each prayer station designed to help ponder the true meaning of Christmas.

The church is set up with four candles around the outside of the room to represent a traditional Advent wreath. Another candle is positioned in the middle of the room to represent the Christ candle. These candles become the prayer stations where there are scripture meditations and supplies for an activity associated with each scripture passage.

View original post 614 more words

Reclaiming Yoga as a Christian Healing Tool

Standard

For real change to take place, the body needs to learn that the danger has passed and to live in the reality of the present. ~Bessel van der Kolk, MD (pioneer in the field of traumatology) in The Body Keeps the Score

I have already written about my journey listening to the voice of God as I’ve explored yoga as a creative Christian practice. I also want to share another reason behind my exploration of yoga as I’ve sought the Lord’s will and wisdom in this somewhat tricky and controversial issue as a follower of Jesus Christ.

Slide1.jpg

I am deeply passionate about helping others find the healing power of Jesus through creativity, beauty, art, and worship. I am currently writing a devotional Bible study about that very topic. And more and more, as I am reading, researching and writing, God is leading me to connect this love of healing through the arts with my love for yoga and all things embodied. In the midst of my research and exploration of trauma, I quickly found the work of Bessel van der Kolk, MD, a leader in the field of trauma since the 1970s. In his own research he has more recently discovered that yoga and other embodied practices help those who suffer from PTSD and chronic trauma. Let me refer you to two articles and a recorded interview on his research and discoveries: Continue reading

Yoga as a Creative Christian Practice

Standard

13495631_10154271016232392_6400787629676570113_o.jpg

Shoulder to shoulder with my Jesus tribe I know that I am accepted and loved, that I belong and that I have found a group of people who have experienced the great love of Jesus Christ…. on a mat… a yoga mat.

Raise PraiseYou ask me how? How can a Christian practice yoga? I mean, isn’t it Hindu? Aren’t you worshiping the sun or Shiva or a weird looking elephant dude… or something? I could tell you that the movements we call yoga in America are actually more closely derived from the exercise regimens of Indian palaces than from the ashrams who adopted them (Science of Yoga, W.J. Broad), but I’m not sure you’d believe me. So I’ll tell you what God told me.

First, let me clearly state that I recognize that not everyone can or should practice yoga. There are people who have had negative experiences with yoga, and I agree 100% that yoga is not the best creative practice for them to adopt. However, that doesn’t mean that it effects everyone in the same negative way (proceeding with wisdom, discernment and caution). For I have experienced the love of God in such strong, powerful and healing way on the mat, that I cannot go along with the notion that a Christian cannot practice yoga. Let me tell you what Jesus has taught me along my journey into yoga…

Continue reading