When something doesn't go quite the way I hope for, in lieu of saying bad words, this is one of those little things you may often hear me exclaim! My sister things it is quite funny and has become a cute little joke. This past week as been a "Aw, SnapDragons" kind of week.
Last week I talked about learning to bend, especially in times that feels like you're close to breaking. Christ wants you to put your trust, your faith, your hopes, your needs, your heart in Him. But what about those times when you feel you have poured out all you have to Him, yet you are still breaking?
Monday was Halloween. I had seen it coming all weekend. My husband was stressed, overwhelmed, and unhappy with things out of his control at work. Other factors were also causing fatigue on his well-being. He decided to not go trick-or-treating with us. By the time we got home, my wonderful husband had worked himself into such a mood that he even expressed that perhaps God wasn't real for him, since all the prayers hadn't been heard and my husband still felt miserable. He was breaking.
On Tuesday I had the opportunity to be my husband's life coach. (Which, I will admit, I normally do not do because as the wife, it is hard to stay non-emotional and professional! But I have to Praise Jesus, because HE gave me the words and strength to be exactly what was needed for my husband that day.) One of the areas that was really lacking on Josh's "Wellness Wheel" was his physical well-being...his ability to focus on self-care. Prior to Josh ever being a school administrator, he was a physical education teacher, like myself. So to harp on him the benefits of exercise would have been patronizing. Yet, it was clear from his responses that this was certainly something he wasn't thinking about much, nor did he have the ability at the time to have a plan or follow through to focus on exercise, or doing something physical, even if it was going on a walk outside.
"Do you not know that you are God's temple and that God's Spirit dwells in you?"- 1 Corinthians 3:16 What does that mean to you? Well, to me, this means that I am so precious because God lives in me and to honor Him, I need to take care of my body. HE gave me this body to use on earth, it is where my heart and my soul is housed, and I glorify Him by taking care of it! But, if you are not in the mind frame of honoring Christ at the moment, like how Josh was feeling, how do you get there???
My friends, you do not give up. You fight for it. You take a deep, cleansing breath, you grab your SmartPhone, find your favorite Pandora radio station (for me, it a bluegrass Gospel station), put in your ear phones, and start with taking a walk. Focus on the moment. Focus on your breath as you slowly inhale, feeling your lungs fill with sweet oxygen. As you exhale, be mindful about letting your negative feelings go out of your body with that breath. You are just completed the first step to regaining balance to your overall wellness, thus finding a way to bend!
The benefits of exercise are great! This morning, my #1 loyal Zumba attendee came to do Zumba and I could tell she was not feeling 100%. She explained she finally caught the bug that all her elementary students have passed around. She then explained that she still wanted to do Zumba because it always made her feel better, physically and mentally. I'm not going to lie, even though I felt bad that she was not feeling well, I was jumping for joy on the inside because she totally GETS IT! When you find something that is fun and motivates you, it will always help you feel better.
Bending is part of the fitness component of flexibility. Flexibility is needed to lengthen and stretch muscles to prevent injury. And a well stretched muscle allows for movement through a full range of motion. Doing stretches that improves flexibility allows calms the mind and helps the body relax. This is a very literal part of the blog...however in that small paragraph I could find much symbolism between muscles and dealing with life. But, I think you already know where I'd take it, and where we've already been, so I'll leave well enough alone for the time being!
SO, I did title my blog as "Bend and Snap"...but I don't want anyone to actually snap! If you are familiar with a Reese Witherspoon movie from 2001 (yes, it really is that old!!!) called "Legally BLonde", you will remember that the "bend and snap" was a way to get the attention of the opposite sex. This blog today has NOTHING to do with that...but I do want to remind you that what Elle Woods was teaching her friend in the movie was to have confidence. Believe in yourself. Be better than you were yesterday!
Back to Josh, because you may be wondering how he is doing with his physical well-being. Our Wellness Wheels need all the spokes to be a the same strength because if one breaks, the whole wheel collapses. When a spoke bends, it puts stress on the other spokes, but it can be mended. And everyday, the spokes need to checked and inspected so that the balance can continue. Josh got back on track. It's a daily lesson. And it's a daily reminder that we are His and He will continue to help us fight the good fight!
Today, this song is stuck in my head. It's one that seems to come up when I am focusing on being in the right mindset, when I need to focus on filling my lungs with breath...with HIS breath. Please take a moment as you finish reading to enjoy "Great are you Lord" by All Sons and Daughters,
Remember, I am here for you, whether in my office or teaching or praying for you, I am here for you. I love you and want you to be better than you were yesterday. How can I help you today? And by the way...isn't it interesting that I say "Aw Snapdragons?" They really are such a beautiful flower! Perhaps it is my subconscious telling me there is beauty in ALL things, good and bad, and that these plants do not break in the wind, they simply bend. God Bless.