Monday, January 25, 2016

You're Blessed When You're At The End Of Your Rope

Backbending in Peru
      Tonight was my second yoga class. The difference between last week and this week to me was huge. Last week my palms were sweaty, I paced around the house frantically before leaving and I had no clue what to expect. God showed me that everything would be alright, though. This is His plan, after all. He chose me for His plan and my job is to just follow his lead, to let go and let Him take over. This week I didn't even plan my class until the day before and didn't practice it until an hour before. I knew it would be okay without fussing over it for days. I wasn't nervous at all and was excited to teach. I decided to share another passage that is very close to my heart:


"“You’re blessed when you’re at the end of your rope. With less of you there is more of God and his rule.

4 You’re blessed when you feel you’ve lost what is most dear to you. Only then can you be embraced by the One most dear to you.

5 “You’re blessed when you’re content with just who you are—no more, no less. That’s the moment you find yourselves proud owners of everything that can’t be bought.

6 “You’re blessed when you’ve worked up a good appetite for God. He’s food and drink in the best meal you’ll ever eat.

7 “You’re blessed when you care. At the moment of being ‘care-full,’ you find yourselves cared for.

8 “You’re blessed when you get your inside world—your mind and heart—put right. Then you can see God in the outside world.

9 “You’re blessed when you can show people how to cooperate instead of compete or fight. That’s when you discover who you really are, and your place in God’s family.

10 “You’re blessed when your commitment to God provokes persecution. The persecution drives you even deeper into God’s kingdom.

11-12 “Not only that—count yourselves blessed every time people put you down or throw you out or speak lies about you to discredit me. What it means is that the truth is too close for comfort and they are uncomfortable. You can be glad when that happens—give a cheer, even!—for though they don’t like it, I do! And all heaven applauds. And know that you are in good company. My prophets and witnesses have always gotten into this kind of trouble. "
-Matthew 5:3-12

     I love love love this version of The Beatitudes. It hits me so hard every time I hear it. The Message version resonates with me so profoundly because until I heard "You're blessed when you are at the end of your rope" or "You're blessed when you're content with just who you are - no more, no less." it didn't seem to fully sink it. When I think that I should be so overjoyed that I would "give a cheer, even!" because I am so stressed out, lonely, frustrated that I am at the end of my rope or have "lost what is most dear" to me it really makes me stop to think. Am I worshiping God, glorifying Him and praising his name when I feel like that? Should I be? Absolutely. Why? Because my worldly happiness is so conditional and the joy that comes from His everlasting love is forever. I can be overjoyed knowing that everything on Earth is temporary and that He has my plan already mapped out and the final destination is home. Phew. What a blessing that is. I know this is a lot to read during a yoga class, but I had to. If it resonates so strongly with me I can only pray that it means something to at least one other person in the room, too. 

      I have to admit, it is difficult to teach such a diverse group of people and tailor the class to everyone's needs. I did a gentle class with some flow with focus on balance and twists. We talked about balance physically between sides of the body, forward bending vs. back bending, and emotionally as we try to balance the urge to hold on and control our lives with the urge to exhale and let go. I do love seeing everyone do their own version of each pose for their level, though. It means that yoga is accessible to everyone that comes, despite their age, gender or abilities.


Intro to Holy Yoga II Balance & Twists Outline:

  • Warm up (5 breaths each side)
    • Lying spinal twist
    • Knees to chest
    • Bridge 3x
    • Seated side stretches
    • Simple seated neck rolls, fold it out both sides
    • Seated twist
  • Active
    • Boat pose
    • Balancing bound angle
    • Boat-bound angle flow
    • Cat-cow (5 breaths each) à cat-cow flow 5x
    • Wide legged child’s pose (10 breaths) palms up
    • Modified plank (5 breaths)
    • Lower to sphinx or baby cobra
    • Childs pose to modified plank,  lower to sphinx, return to child’s and flow x4
    • Table top with calf stretch/ stretch deeply in foot
    • Down dog, walk it out
    • Step forward to forward fold
    • Half way lift 3x
    • Mountain pose breakdown
    • side stretching 3-5x
    • back bend
    • gentle chair pose
    • exhale forward fold, lift half way, exhale down to forward fold, inhale to standing, exhale hands to back, back bend, flow 3x 
    • tree pose
    • Forward fold to sitting
  • Cool down
    • Child’s pose
    • Crocodile with alternate bent legs
    • Banana pose with crossed ankles
    • Knees to chest,  roll it out
  • Be still & know

Have a blessed day!

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