Mini Yoga Learnings | WIP

WIP – Work-In-Progress

Working on improvement but that's what life is, right? A work in progress.

Earlier this week, I had the most relaxing and positive start. God spoke Hebrews 12 over me and at that point, I thought I knew what He meant. Then a series of events turned the emotional needle the opposite direction. Now I ponder over Hebrews 12 and have a more profound perspective. Just when you think you know… What can I say? Life is a constant WIP. Yoga is a great reminder of that.

“Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as his children. For what children are not disciplined by their father?” ~ Hebrews‬ ‭12:7‬ ‭NIV

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Living My Dream in Kids Ministry

 

From a young age, I’ve been blessed with a gift of teaching and a way with kids.  Most kids get along with me and I them.  It’s something that I’m very grateful for.

Growing up, I’ve volunteered at Child Care centres, youth groups and most recently assistant helping with kindergarten and school kids at my son’s school.

Last year, I was given an opportunity to be employed by the Kids Ministry at my church.  It was a tough decision but I turned it down, feeling that the time wasn’t right.  I knew that God will call again if that was His plan.

This year, I am honoured and take pleasure in re-visiting this dream.   Not in an employment capacity but to serve Him when I can.

Kids.  They are our future.  They are the responsibilities that God has given us to grow His Kingdom.

Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward. ~Psalm 127:3

I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth. ~ 3 John  1:4

Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it. ~Proverbs 22:6

You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. ~Deuteronomy 6:7

All your children shall be taught by the Lord, and great shall be the peace of your children. ~ Isaiah 54:13


But Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.” ~Matthew 19:14

 

 

 

How Would You Describe Jesus

  Yesterday was day 12 of the #PrepareOurHeartsForAdvent Holy Yoga devotional. I didn’t have time to do it yesterday and wanted to honour the time for this devotional. So I did it today on day 13. It’s “drawing meditation” combined with Lectio Divina. 

Note: not sure what “adimarable” is in the picture but totally an example of where I’m learning to embrace “imperfection” where it is not required. 😜

Philippians 4:8 (NIV)
“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.”

To me, these words describe our King. Jesus. And it’s timely as we approach #advent… To think of all of the qualities that Jesus is and has. We often talk about trying to be more ‘Christ-like’. When I start dwelling on these adjectives, it was just like, “wow”. Just… wow… 

Would or can I use ALL those words to describe myself? Probably not yet… Probably never… Thankful I have my Saviour to look up to.

P.S. I also learnt about the meaning of the Advent Wreath so that’s what I was attempting to draw.. 😂

You Heard It. Stop Compartmentalising Your Life …

  Possibly one of the hardest challenges for the modern-day 1st world Christian is to stop compartmentalising his/her life. By that, I mean that we live a Christ-like way of life within our comfortable circle of church friends. And the minute we step away from the comfort of those brothers and sisters, we enter into the world without the same boldness that we have amongst our church friends. Why do we do that?

Inherently, I suspect it is our fear of rejection. 

Humans are built to be in community, regardless on where you land on the extro-intro-version scale. Isolation and abandonment is the one of the worst forms punishment. Hence why we fear rejection and isolation. And in this modern, secular world (or city that I) that we live in, being outwardly Christian may mean you risk the abandonment or isolation.  

Personally, I haven’t experienced much ‘abandonment’ per se. That would be a strong word to use. However, have I been faced with awkward situations where my faith has been questioned and I was compelled to stand on the opposing side of a spiritual view with a good friend? Most definitely. 

Did that make me uncomfortable? Absolutely.

Did I fear judgement from my friends who do not follow Jesus, even though I know the only judgement I should fear is God’s? (Especially those who are like, “Comon’, Jo. You? Christian?”) Yup, sometimes I still do. 

Did that make me waver and live a ‘compartmentalised’ life, where I only speak of the Gospel to my family in Christ whom I am comfortable with? Yes. Often. 

Nonetheless, over time that ‘often‘ became a constant nemisis and shame for me . Openly taking up Holy Yoga as ministry work has been a huge step forward for me. As a results of this,I have observed five important phenomenons:

1. With practise comes more strength and steadfastness

By living out Word and Deed in every aspect of your life through God, He powers you with strength. By law of the 10 thousand hour rule; by practising, it gets easier. There is absolutely NO reason to live a compartmentalised life. Do it afraid and with courage from Him. 

“For I am not ashamed of the Gospel because it is by the power of God that brings salvation to those who believe, first to the Jews, then to the Gentiles.” Romans 1:16-17

2. People can’t actually repel Christ-likeness. So, don’t be discouraged to live out Word and Deed.

What I’ve learnt over the years is the Truth of salvation. Jesus’ teachings cannot be faulted. If only I can be more like Him! People love Jesus-like people. People are just attracted to kind, compassionate, loving, patience people.  Folks, why would we be afraid to live out a life that others love and frankly, need?

“As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received. Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love.” ‭‭Ephesians‬ ‭4:1-2‬ ‭NIV‬

3. Good friends will appreciate that you practise what you preach. There is no false pretence. 

One of the worst things you can do IS TO COMPARTMENTALISE your life. Either you believe you have been saved by Grace and live it out in joy or you don’t. It is counter productive to be selective in who you rejoice with. Live it out! Spread the Good News! 

“Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all. But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it.” ~‭‭Ephesians‬ ‭4:3-7‬ ‭NIV‬‬

4. Your non-Christian friends will respect you and come to an acceptance. (so long as you remember that you don’t dial the call from God! They will be called in His time. Don’t annoy your friends by playing God. Just pray for them.)

“You, therefore, have no excuse, you who pass judgment on someone else, for at whatever point you judge another, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things.” ~ ‭‭Romans‬ ‭2:1‬ ‭NIV‬‬

5. When all of the above is established and becomes the norm, there will be a sense of true liberation. Pleasing God is a command and He will protect us on our journey. Stop compartmentalising your Christian life today! Make your every day a ministry life. 

“For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.” ~‭‭Galatians‬ ‭5:1‬ ‭ESV‬‬

May this encourage you to seek Him. It’s not an easy road but it is a joyous and deserving one. The gift of salvation is precious. Be thankful. 

Be. Very. Thankful. 

Do You Take Rest Seriously? | Holy Yoga

“Today, I choose REST.”
 
The focus for my Holy Yoga class today was inspired by a blog post from Holy Yoga founder, Brooke Boon, earlier this year. 

“By the seventh day God had finished the work He had been doing; so on the seventh day He rested from all His work.” -Genesis 2:2-3 (NIV)

I never took rest seriously. In fact, I never realised how rest is a command and blessing, which is also a reflection of my faith in God. The fact that I am able to surrender it all to Him and trust in Him to take control over things, that I do not have to use my own ability to work every second of my life to make things work. Even our almighty God rested after He created the earth.

In class today, I spoke briefly about Jesus sleeping through the storm on the boat while his disciples worried. How can Jesus sleep through the storm and wind? Was it not faith and trust? Does it add single hour to our life if we do not rest? In fact, possibly the opposite. 

Do you take rest seriously? In this day and age, with technology signals ringing every minute and every where, it takes conscious effort to REST. 

Thank you to those who came to class today. You were all called to REST. My God bless you with stronger signals than the digital devices to call you when you need rest. May you all listen to Him and take time to REST… Because we know that in Him we trust.  

There’s One Thing That Anxiety Cannot Change | Christian Yoga Class

“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?….

Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.”  ~ Matthew 6: 25-27, 34 (NIV)

Praise God!  Thank you, Jesus.

  By God’s grace and the help of a beautiful friend, Pia, I held my biggest Holy Yoga class on Sunday 30th August 2015 at 4.30pm inside Mowbray Public School’s hall. This class was filled with more than 20 lovely ladies, most of whom who are sisters in Christ and some who are not-yet-Believers of Christ. I am humbled by the gift that God has blessed me with, to minister His Word while holding a class for yoga beginners.

Two weeks leading up to this class, was I a nervous wreck?  Admittedly so.  Did I often pray for strength and for God’s reminder that non of this is my glory to claim and let all be done in His name (hence, why worry?)??  Absolutely.

Did I read and re-read the Scriptures (Matthew 6: 25-27) every day to relieve myself of anxieties leading up to this class. Absolutely.

Was I nervous on the day?  Absolutely.

Was I able to do God’s work in peace and in His Glory?  ABSOLUTELY.

I am reminded that often, during times where our own earthly reputation is put on the line, we worry;  worry about how ‘WE’ are perceived by others and how ‘WE’ want to deliver perfection. Ultimately, all this is the temptation of the flesh to ‘glorify ourselves’.  And it is during this time, that it really tests our FAITH in our Father above.  Whether we truly honour Him in everything we do, and whether we can truly trust Him to deliver whatever outcomes He has planned for us. We learn to surrender it all to our loving Father above. When we try to take things into our own hands, all we get is anxiety. It does not change what our Heavenly Father has planned for us.  Anxiety does not add ‘an hour’ to our span of life. In fact, anxiety adds nothing but toxin to our lives. And so I learn…and I practise and I repeat. 

Being a Holy Yoga teacher refines me this way.  Daily.

I often get asked why I do what I do. There are a few reasons (and I’ll save that for another post) but one of the key reasons is because I NEED Holy Yoga for myself; precisely for the reminder that I need to surrender. And more importantly, I want to share what I’ve experienced with those who have yet to learn about our Father’s love.  I do what I do as Christian Yoga teacher because I am called to live out this passion with purpose. 

It was always my dream that if I became a yoga teacher one day, that I would be able to make friendship/yoga bracelets for my students. God even blessed me with my wishes and made this dream come true. 

I thank my students for allowing me the opportunity to share this time with them and for their generous contributions that will allow me to fund future ministry work. 

Make Holy Yoga your first yoga experience! | Holy Yoga Class

Never done yoga before and afraid to go to a class? Holy Yoga is a great place to start!Jo’s holding a class in the Sydney North Shore on Sunday 30th August (4.30-5.30pm) for ALL LEVELS/BEGINNERS. It doesn’t matter if you aren’t flexible or aren’t ‘good’. YOU are GOOD enough. Come and have fun! PM us to confirm your spot 🙂

“He treated us as equals, and so made us equals.” Ephesians 2:18 (MSG)