Are You Special?

True King

The school year started just a few short weeks ago and I heard a teacher tell a story about her new 5th grade class. She gave her students an introduction sheet to start the year with some typical “Getting to Know You” questions. The last two questions on the sheet were, “What is something that you expect of me as your teacher?” And, “What is the one thing you would like me to know about you?”

For the first question one boy writes two words, “Be Awesome.”

“Wow!” She said, “I hope I can live up to your expectations.” Being inquisitive she prompted him to answer the next question, “So what is it that you want me to know about you?”

He looked up at her with his big brown eyes, half croaked smile and said very matter-of-fact, “You already know!”

“I do?!” Reacting with a surprised glare and curious tone.

“Yes.” He said, “I’m special!”

Wow. Could pride and arrogance already be attributes of this young man’s heart or could it be possible that he has a loving family and strong support system around him that has shaped him with love and confidence? I am going to guest that it is the latter of these.

Can you say that you are special?

I cringe at the thought. After all, who am I? I’m not special. I didn’t set a world record or climb Mount Everest, earn an Olympic medal, invent a product that revolutionized the world or rescue people from a concentration camp, slavery, injury, or a burning building. I have never even come close. Yet, God says I’m special according to John 1:12, “Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.” That’s pretty special if you ask me.

God has a special place in his heart for kids.  And he said in Matthew 18:24, “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.” The innocence of a child can teach us so much.

May this message give you the confidence that you are special because God chose us and sacrificed his Son, Jesus, to make sure we know just how special we are.

Christian Yoga Is An Oxymoron


1 Corinthians 6:12

“I have the right to do anything,” you say—but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything”—but I will not be mastered by anything.

I have been struggling with the practice of doing Yoga as a Christian. As of today I have completed 8 consecutive days of Yoga and I’m already seeing some benefits; namely more energy, restful sleep, and the elimination of a few unwanted pounds. (BONUS!) I don’t think I will attribute these things exclusively to Yoga, but all things considered, there is no doubt that Yoga has fitness benefits. If there were a Christian alternative, I would unquestionably prefer it because I’m torn as to whether or not Yoga is really OK for anyone who professes to follow Christ? Could my unrest be the Holy Spirit prompting me to “STAY AWAY” or warning me to “TAKE CAUTION?” Whichever it is, I’m not comfortable and need a deeper understanding.

There is no question that this is a controversial subject. I have asked around my Christian circles in seeking wise council (Proverbs 15:22) and I have read numerous articles, blogs, and web resources; which have only added to the confusion. Some say it’s fine as long as I keep my focus on Christ and that I already know. Since my first class I have always been intentional about that by changing  the words. For example: When they say, “Namaste,” I say, “In Jesus Name.” When they lay quietly to meditate, I pray!  Most often for my fellow classmates – especially the instructor. But who am I kidding? I don’t go to Yoga for prayer, meditation OR a more grounded sense of who I am. I go to exercise…. that’s it… to work-out, sweat, stretch, increase mobility, toning, and to stay or be fit! Because of the creepy Ohm’s, sun salutations, terminology, and hyper-smiley Buddha statue, my mind is purposefully redirected toward prayer, Christ, and God.

I’ve found some peace in believing that I am truly living out 2 Corinthians 10:5b stating, “We take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.” My thoughts are most certainly centered on Christ throughout the duration of each class. Maybe that’s a good thing? Considering other work-out venues of a more club-like nature, I get a clear picture of just how lost, sinful, broken, and deprived this world really is. Between the most vulgar music lyrics, heightened egos, uncensored language, and tempers firing  – it’s much more tolerable to go through the motions of poses, bows, and binds.

But then there’s another side of the story. My greatest struggle and question is, “What example am I setting for those who know me as a follower of Christ that see me participating in something that is rooted in the traditions of Hinduism?” This can be easily misconstrued as something that I endorse as being permissible for Christians and that is not what I believe at all. If I’m confused, but my actions imply otherwise, I could be causing a brother (or sister) in Christ to stumble (1 John 2:10). In addition, Philippians 4:8-9 says, “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. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.” If this was my Yoga litmus test, I believe it would fail the test.

So if God’s Word is the authority and scripture has evidence to support that we [Christians] should NOT participate, then it’s a no brainier, right? In 1 Timothy 6:11-12, “But you, man of God, flee from all this, and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance and gentleness. Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made your good confession in the presence of many witnesses.”

To offer a counterpoint in favor of Yoga, how about 1 Corinthians 6:19? “Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own”. If I have God in me and I am His… how can this be a threat? I have always tried to exercise with the awareness that my body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, but this whole spiritual regime takes “temple of the Holy Spirit” to a whole new level for me. It’s practically literal in a way.

Those who vehemently oppose Christians participating in Yoga say that Yoga is so deeply embedded into the spiritual realm that it is impossible to separate Christianity from the cult practice that it is. If this is true, that would mean that Yoga would be similar to playing with a Ouija board in denial that ‘it’ would or could do harm. So to this example I have to agree that we should NOT be messing with it.

So the question remains, “To DO or NOT do Yoga?” Whatever the ‘right’ answer is, I trust that God knows my heart. He knows I’m not trying to make an idol out of it, nor am I seeking some alternative realm to fulfill my unconscious needs. For now I’m going to continue my study into God’s Word and seek the answer that God ultimately teaches me.

For the readers of this blog, I would value your insights on this. Ideally with a scriptural reference that will help us all learn together. Trust me, there are plenty of opinions to be found through Google, but being guided by God’s Word is more reliable. In the meantime, I will be discerning and continue to make my Yoga practice be representative of my faith. Never know… God might use this to make a Kingdom impact for His glory.

Someone With Integrity… FINALLY!


If you “Like” the Godly Girlfriend Page on Facebook you are aware that I post a chapter a day from the bible. Today we studied Genesis 42 and if you are not following, this is your invitation to join us.

Historically I have been a new testament girl. I value the lessons that Jesus and his disciples modeled for us and the hope that we have in the resurrected Christ; while the old testament seemed, well, old. I know that the entire Word is inspired by God so I decided it was time to expand my horizons. Boy am I glad I did!

What a roller-coaster! From the fall of Adam & Eve to the hope of Noah, from the disbelief and jealously of Abraham, Sarah, Lot, Isaac, Jacob, Rachel, Rebekah to the intermarriage of maidservants and concubines, prostitution and betrayal. My old testament icons have quickly proven to be ‘human’ – sinful and all. I was really beginning to believe that God must be more of a forgiving God than I had ever imaged or credited to Him, because these guys make my life look heavenly in comparison. I am totally being facetious – I still reduce myself to the lowest of these – if anything, they give me even more hope than I ever thought or deserve.

And in the midst of everyone’s messes, God introduces Joseph. Thank God for Joseph! There are so many lessons and great life applications Joseph’s life models. I feel the need to point out just one main thing… What a breath of fresh air! Joseph is a beautiful example to us and he stands out as the “star of the book of Genesis”. He hasn’t deceived his way to the top; he hasn’t lied, cheated, murdered, or manipulated anyone to gain his position. If anything, he was mistreated, abused, falsely accused, left for dead, forgotten, and shunned. Not a Godly resume, but truly a God story personified through a Godly man!

I am very endeared to Joseph as a result. As much as I had heard his story many times before, in the context of the entire old testament, how exciting it is to find a man whose life stands apart. Could that be our story?  Joseph gives us hope that it’s not us, it’s God who will be glorified through our lives – good times and bad. What an impact a life of integrity makes and how rare it is to find. Let’s make that our story and remember, whatever life brings us, remain faithful – God knows the outcomes.