Auto-Pilot

“Busy is the state of your calendar, hurried is the state of your mind.” -Kimberly Mervyn 

I wrote this down at my Holy Yoga Immersion Experience.  This week, it has popped back up as my calendar has filled up.  I kept making a wrong turn on my way to teach a yoga class.  My daughter was in the car and was laughing at me.  I said, “sorry, I was on autopilot.”  Realizing she didn’t know what that meant, I explained how sometimes our brains take over and proceed with the most common course of action.  I was hurried, my soul was anxious, I am starting a new business and with that comes the fears of failing, the stress of fitting it all in, the financial anxieties… you get it. 

So yesterday I decided that while my calendar is full, that does not mean I need to feel hurried.  That does not give me permission to snap at people or be short with them.  That does not mean that I can’t find the time on said calendar to slow down and just be.  Be in the presence of my maker and be thankful to him for the many blessings that are filling my calendar right now.

In my yoga classes this week, I talked about stepping out of the boat in faith.

Matthew 14:22-33 (NIV) says

                22 Immediately Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowd. 23 After he had dismissed them, he went up on a mountainside by himself to pray. Later that night, he was there alone, 24 and the boat was already a considerable distance from land, buffeted by the waves because the wind was against it. 25 Shortly before dawn Jesus went out to them, walking on the lake. 26 When the disciples saw him walking on the lake, they were terrified. “It’s a ghost,” they said, and cried out in fear. 27 But Jesus immediately said to them: “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.” 28 “Lord, if it’s you,” Peter replied, “tell me to come to you on the water.” 29 “Come,” he said. Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. 30 But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!” 31 Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?” 32 And when they climbed into the boat, the wind died down. 33 Then those who were in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.”

I am so much like Peter in this passage.  I doubt; I begin to sink and I cry out to God to help!  He never disappoints but I imagine he often says “you of little faith, why do you doubt?”  Why would he call me out onto the water if I was going to sink?  The reality is I begin to sink when I take my eyes off Him.  This last week, I felt that hurried state in my soul and felt like I was sinking.  Today, I choose to look up at my maker and trust.  Having faith doesn’t mean I don’t have spreadsheets, it doesn’t mean I don’t do my best to manage my business, but what it does mean is that I do my best and forget the rest!!!  He’s got me.  He will not let me sink, I just have to keep my eyes fixed.

Psalm 20:6-8 (NIV) says

6 Now this I know: The LORD gives victory to his anointed. He answers him from his heavenly sanctuary with the victorious power of his right hand. 7 Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the LORD our God. 8 They are brought to their knees and fall, but we rise up and stand firm

 In Holy Yoga we talk about rooting down to rise up.  Today, let’s root down in the Lord and rise up victorious.

Beauty From Ashes

This week I prepared for my Holy Yoga classes and it never ceases to amaze me how God shows up and changes my message as the class goes on.  I walked in with “A cheerful heart is good medicine!” – Proverbs 17:22. As I began talking I felt God leading me toward the idea of Wabi Sabi.

Wikipedia defines Wabi Sabi as

Wabisabi represents a comprehensive Japanese world view or aesthetic centered on the acceptance of transience and imperfection. The aesthetic is sometimes described as one of beauty that is “imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete”.

The visual representation of this is broken pottery repaired with gold. 

In a world where we watch other people’s lives through the scope of social media, we get accustomed to seeing people’s highlight reels.  This begins to distort our view of what beauty truly is.  As a Yoga instructor I post exciting new poses or pictures of me doing Yoga that I feel are beautiful, but my Instagram highlight reel is not my process.  It leaves out the many times I fell or failed in that pose before I eventually found it!  When I teach, I want people to see the beauty in the process.  When we wobble and fall in a balance pose or struggle and shake in a strength building pose.  When we get nowhere near reaching our toes or feel that our bodies just don’t twist that way.  These are examples of the process.  They are beautiful because when we try something new for our bodies, we are going to struggle.  It is in the consistency, the persistence, the hard things, that we find God’s beauty!  In these moments, we learn not only to strive, but also to surrender.

A quote by Eyse Murphy says “Growing closer to God is not the result of ‘trying harder’ but of surrendering more.”  I love the beautiful parallels between my Yoga practice and my faith.  In any pose, there are muscles that are working and muscles that must surrender, in our faith there is a certain amount of work that we must do but there is also surrendering to God’s beautiful, grace-filled love.  And when we fall and fail, we get back up, dust ourselves off, learn and grow.  In this we are like the broken pots being filled with God’s beauty (gold). 

Isaiah 61:3 NIV

    and provide for those who grieve in Zion—
to bestow on them a crown of beauty
    instead of ashes,
the oil of joy
    instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise
    instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
    a planting of the Lord
    for the display of his splendor.

To you who feels you are not strong enough to practice yoga – come and let God teach you something about strength.

To you who feels you are not flexible enough to practice yoga – come and let God teach you something about surrender.

To you who feels you are not enough or less than – come and let God show you His eternal, unfailing love.

God bless you, beautiful children of the most high!!!

Lindsey Morales

You Are Loved

I am reading this book by Lysa TerKeurst titled Uninvited: Living Loved When You Feel Less Than, Left Out, and Lonely.  Last night I read her statement “Live from the abundant place that you are loved, and you won’t find yourself begging others for scraps of love.”  This is such a beautiful statement, but, as Lysa goes on to say in the book, it is easier said than done.

What she is referring to is living each day knowing you are loved by God, by your creator.  But it brought me back to a time when my husband and I kept having the same argument.  It was as if I assumed everything he said was meant to put me down, for some reason, always on the defense.  Now, I have been blessed with a man who can not only keep his cool but even spout something profound when he’s angry.  What he said next was a turning point in our marriage… at least for me.  Amid his frustration, he said something so amazing, “I love you, when you think I am trying to put you down, remember that I love you and give me the benefit of the doubt that I am not trying to hurt you.” Those words sunk in deep.

It didn’t take long before I was feeling defensive again.  He asked if there were any tomatoes in the fridge because he wanted to make his signature spaghetti.  Well there weren’t, and my mind started doing it again, assuming he was upset with me.  As if he would be upset with me for not picking up tomatoes when I went grocery shopping.  My mind started racing with my defense.  His disappointment was showing through and I took it personally.  Now rationally looking back, I can see that this had nothing to do with me.  He had not asked me to pick up tomatoes and I cannot read his mind.  His disappointment was not with me but with the simple fact that he couldn’t make spaghetti that night.  No biggie.

As I went to respond, I remembered his comment during our last fight and decided to voice my hurt feelings with the preface of “I know you did not intend to hurt me, but” and then explained how it felt like he was disappointed in me for not anticipating his needs.  This was a game changer, because instead of putting him on the defense and escalating a simple statement into an all-out fight, he just saw that he had hurt me.  He knew he didn’t mean to and I knew it as well but I was hurt all the same.  He hugged me and reassured me that he was not disappointed in me and it was done at that.

“Live from the abundant place that you are loved, and you won’t find yourself begging others for scraps of love.” – Lysa TerKeurst

How often do we waste energy assuming another person’s intentions?  Making up a whole inner dialogue that we think the other person is having when they say or do something?  The reality is that we have no idea what they are truly thinking.  When I voiced what was happening in my head, I gave my husband the chance to dispel all of it.  Satan no longer had power because I believed a simple statement, that my husband loved me and wouldn’t try to hurt me.

It makes a huge difference to speak to the people you love from the mindset that they love you and are not intending to hurt you.  It is easy to let Satan twist people’s words or intentions in our minds and feel hurt for something that was never meant to hurt.

Going back to Lysa’s quote “Live from the abundant place that you are loved, and you won’t find yourself begging others for scraps of love.”  There are people in this world who don’t love you, who will hurt you.  I think what Lysa was trying to get at is that when you feel hurt by people in this world, you need to go the place in your mind where you know that the Creator of the Universe loves you.  That He sent his Son to die on a cross for you.  If someone doesn’t love you, that’s ok because you won’t need their love if you know beyond a shadow of doubt that you are loved for exactly who you are and who you were created to be.

I hope this spoke to your soul as it did to mine and you go forth with your day reminded that you are loved!

Blessings!

Lindsey Morales