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:
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.
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
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.
You 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…