how to rest (a totally useless guide)

so I haven’t written much since I returned from my holy yoga training retreat, except to update you all who were so sweetly and so diligently covering me in prayer. (you are the BEST, y’all.) But here’s a little peak into the wild and holy work that went on in my soul that week… Consider that (along with the history of this blog 😉 ) your disclaimer.

you have been warned. proceed with caution.

it all started with the flight. boarding scared & doing it afraid, and being so utterly terrified that I just curled into a ball, stuck my headphones in, and listened to music about God carrying me as the plane took off. miraculously, no panic pills were involved. so great, right?!
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((photo from the HOYO family facebook page- not mine))

after a whirlwind night meeting people for the first time, only to bunk with them about ten minutes later (only through Jesus, y’all), and rushing back to the airport to reconvene with the rest of the HOYO sisterhood that was arriving for retreat, and bumping along the Arizona desert for 3 hours, and moving into our cabins & going through our first flow as a group… Sunday was killer, guys.

and Monday and Tuesday were hellish. yeah. I said it. constantly moving from dawn to long after dusk on little sleep, high elevation, and surrounded by people I had never met before. (and all the introverts draw a collective gasp of horror, as the extroverts are thinking I must have intended to type heavenly). I honestly wasn’t sure I’d survive the week at that point.

and then Tuesday night hit, and I’m lying in savasana on a hard wood gym floor, only separated by a thin yoga mat, surrounded by quiet breathing and muffled sniffles, staring up at the dimmed lights and orange glow of the heaters, thinking, “what the hell have I done? I’m so utterly exhausted. I don’t understand. I thought I was called to this. but no, I’m still exhausted… just like I have been for the past year of my life. it never ends, and God you still don’t give me any sort of strength, for some reason that continues to infuriate and frustrate my ever-loving mind.”

hoyomin
((photo from the HOYO facebook page- not mine))

and then the touch came. soft and subtle, the hands of a kind friend massaging my scalp, pressing into my shoulders… and her voice:
the Spirit has a word for you… you’re asking for the wrong thing. God wants to give it to you, but you’re reluctant to receive.”

chills. fear. confusion. as she moved away from my space to speak over someone else.

well, then what is it Lord?

so clearly.”You’re exhausted… Let me give you rest.”

Rest. what a word. how do we even do it? how do we push pause on our wild minds and constant trying and attempt to settle into a space of calm and peace? how do we learn to say “no” to more stuff and learn to say “yes” to that still, small voice that calls to our hearts? how do we become intentional about breathing peace and space and hush into the tight, closed, rushed places of our lives?

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I don’t know.

but I do know, the more I pause, the more I selah, the more I wait on the Lord and trust in His goodness, the more my trying ceases and my heartbeat slows to a rhythm of rest. there is no magic formula. there is no try harder here. there is only try softer. there is only being present. there is only practice of the unfamiliar to bring the newness of that rest to light.

can we practice the unfamiliar together?

can we take a moment of selah, a moment of holy pause, to remember the good gifts our Father longs to give us, and the rest that waits for us, if only we would be still and know?

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