Do not Drift Away

We must pay more careful attention, therefore,

to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away.

-Hebrews 2:1


Oh it’s so easy to drift. To look away for a moment and completely lose my way. To gaze longingly at something shiny.  To be tempted. To wander.

In church the other day, we were reminded of the “cloud of witnesses”.  Those faithful that went before us and ran the race with endurance. They did not grow weary.

Last week I was honored to serve as one of the small group leaders on the Holy Yoga retreat. We welcomed 150 new instructors into the ministry.  Watching the week unfold,  I couldn’t help but think of the “cloud of witnesses”.  I am so grateful for all of the believers that have come before me. Those people that live with a persistent and persevering attachment to Jesus.

Thank you Lord for the JOY that comes from believers coming together.  Thank you for authentic community.

Our word for the week was MORE.

yes lord give me more

I was reminded of the story of the Prodigal Son.  He wasted his fortune and came home with his tail between his legs.  He was afraid.  He had decided he was not good enough to be his father’s son anymore, he would just beg his father to let him be a servant. He asked for as little as possible.  He had assumed he was disqualified. But what happened?  His father threw him a huge party! He wanted to celebrate with him and for him.  He welcomed him home as his beloved son!

In what areas of your life are you assuming you don’t deserve God’s blessing?  In what ways are you limiting yourself?  Where can you ask for more?

Because the truth is…God can’t wait to celebrate with you!  He desires to bring you joy…to dance and sing with you…Can you feel it?




©2015 Sue Bidstrup, Great Big Yes™, All Rights Reserved





When did I stop playing?



I made a huge discovery the other day that I have to share with you.

I am taking the training for Kids Holy Yoga.  We have been talking about play and how important it is. One of our assignments was to play for 20 minutes.

Oh my gosh this was eye opening!

I decided to swim.  It’s October but I live in Texas and we have a pool and it’s 94 degrees so…why not?

Picture this…it’s mid-day and I decide to put on my swimsuit and frolic in the pool for no reason but to play. To say this felt weird is an understatement.  I was thinking, “What if someone stops by?” I felt like I was wasting time. I had no purpose.  My mind was telling me, “Just swim some laps so you can count this as exercise”.

You guys.  When did this happen?

When did I start needing to account for every minute of the day?  Why was I in the pool feeling like I should be doing laundry or at least reading a book or something.  Weren’t there colleges to research and wasn’t there grocery shopping to be done? HOW WERE MY KIDS GOING TO TURN OUT IF THEY FOUND OUT THEIR MOM WENT SWIMMING ALONE MID-DAY????

Honestly. When did I become the party pooper?

So, I forced myself and started shooting some hoops.  I am so bad.  I can’t make a basket to save my life regardless of the fact I played center in junior high and my dad called me Kareem.

I swam a little and immediately became winded so I started doing handstands and talking to myself under water…”Scooby Doo”…Did you do that? Say things underwater to your friends and make them guess what you said? We had categories.  I was playing TV shows.  By myself.

I did some flips but my ears filled up with water so I stopped.

At one point I chuckled to myself thinking about how long it had been since I just played for no reason.  How long it had been since I had gone in the pool with no regard for how my thighs looked or if my hair was going to get gross or if getting wet was worth it because then I have to shower and get dressed again.

When did this happen?

Years ago.

I sidelined myself years ago.

If I was doing something active, it was for a work out.  I would walk or run or go the gym.  I went because it was good for me and I wanted to stay healthy.  I wouldn’t say any of that was “fun”.  Even my yoga, that I love so much, had become a “have to” in my mind.  I was thinking of it from a “teaching” perspective and I forgot how much I enjoy it.

How does this happen?

I had seen my husband go up on the side of the hot tub and slide down into the pool. There is no slide, he just made up something fun, imagine that? (Side note: He has not sidelined himself.  Ever. He puts on his swimsuit every day after work and jumps in.  He likes the back runs of the ski mountain.  He’s gone sky diving. Friends that went to Mexico with us can attest to the fact that he likes to jump off cliffs and now in Texas, he’s taking up hunting and fishing. If there’s a game or activity happening, he is in. Is this a gender thing?) Anyway, I went in the hot tub and then slid into the pool.  It was fun and refreshing and I startled myself thinking, “I want to do that again!”

When  my husband came home and saw a beach towel out and the basketball in the pool he started asking the kids…Did you swim today? They were like, “No, mom did.” He was incredulous. And envious.  He kept saying, “I always want you to swim with me.  Why don’t you swim with me?”

Ugh. Why don’t I? What the heck have I been doing?  Was I too busy to have fun? Is he thinking…”Where is the fun girl I married?!?!”

I tried to hold my breath and swim across the pool under water without coming up for air.  It reminded me of the many long summer days spent in the pool.  Hours and hours of mindless fun, pruny skin and green hair.  We would leave the pool sun drenched and exhausted.  The next day we would ride our bikes in a pack to do it again. The pool always signified freedom. Summer. Friends. Long lazy days of nothing.

I’m convinced God can do amazing things in those lazy days.  He is the author of freedom.

We spend all this time reading and writing and working and studying and striving and not wasting a precious minute…and yet, He beckons…put that down, come outside, swim with me.  I want to see you laugh and play and be free.

Yesterday, I said “Yes” and I could feel His delight.

©2015 Sue Bidstrup, Great Big Yes™, All Rights Reserved


You Get Wise, You Get to Church!

community october


My husband loves to quote movies. Thus, the title of this post.  Can anyone tell me who said it? Or what movie it’s from?

We get lots of advice from people, don’t we?  Solicited, Unsolicited…it doesn’t matter, some people just like to advise.  Let’s be honest, we have all been given some bad advice over the years.  If we are really honest, we have to admit we’ve likely also offered some bad advice.

Someone told me once that you should be careful who you hang around with because you will start to become like the 5 people you spend the most time with. Hmmm…that got me thinking.

My husband and I are attending a class at church and one of the pastors explained it like this…We are all playing along, living our lives, grading ourselves on our holiness, assuming we are getting about a B.  If we are super prideful, we may actually believe we are getting an A.  We are following rules, we are “religious”, we are successful in the world’s eyes, we don’t see any overt sin in our lives (usually because we are avoiding seeing it).  We compare ourselves with others and we come out on top…”At least I’m not as bad as that guy!” We may give money to charitable causes and maybe we serve a little but out of duty.  Or maybe we do feel a passion to serve and we are doing and saying all the right things.  We go to church but we are not necessarily living transformed lives.  We look past that though and drift along, showing up in all the right places. We give ourselves high marks for things we think are “holy”.  We deem ourselves, “pretty good”, maybe a B- or a C plus.  Most of us know better than to say we are an A.  We may think it but we know we should be humble because we learned that in Sunday school, so we give ourselves a B while patting ourselves on the back for our humility.

Meanwhile, the Bible tells us that we are sinners in need of a Savior. The Bible says that keeping the law is not what’s important.  James 2:10 tells us “For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it.” I don’t know about you but I know I’m not capable of keeping all of the Laws in the Bible.  I’m working on the Big 10.

So the pastor had written a bunch of grades on the board…A, B-, C…and then he put a slash through all of them and said, “Actually, we are all getting an F”. And there was a big red F on the board. Now for someone like me who is a rule follower, this does not sit well.  I have spent my life doing what I’m told, caring about rules, following God’s commandments, going to church, taking communion, praying, writing, speaking and yoga-ing for Jesus.  The sting of this truth revealed my heart.  I was trying to be “good enough” for God. I believed I was about a B. I was performing and striving and hoping and praying that my “works” would please Him.  Maybe you do this too? Maybe you’ve been fighting to be an A and when you feel like a C, despair sets in. Friends, that despair is not from the Lord.  The Lord offers hope.

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” – John 3:16

“For what the law was powerless to do because it was weakened by the flesh, God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh to be a sin offering.” – Romans 8:3

See, God knows us and loves us and sent His son to save us.  Picture that report card with an F on it.  When Jesus came, it miraculously changed into an A. He wiped our slate clean. This is the good news.  This is the Gospel.

The toughest part of this for some is not believing that Jesus came or that God loves us or that the sacrifice on the cross was for us…the toughest part for some of us is admitting that we cannot do it alone. We don’t believe the F.   It’s difficult to admit our own weakness and need for a Savior.  But it is necessary.  If you could do it alone, Jesus’s life and death would mean nothing.

Some people in our lives, some of our “teachers” will tell us we are a B, we are “doing great”, we should just work harder, do more, give more and then we will be enough. But the wise teachers will tell us about the one who hands out the A’s.  Our wise teachers will lead us the the only One who can give us a passing grade.

“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast.” – Ephesians 2:8-9

I told someone once that I am a sinner saved by grace and she looked at me and said, “Yeah, right. What have you ever done wrong?”  Isn’t that just like us? We assume other people have it all together.  We look at our shortcomings but speculate that others have none. Y’all.  For real. We are all sinners. We can dress ourselves up and shellack the heck out of our lives but underneath, we all struggle with sin.

This is not fun to talk about.  That’s why we don’t. But once we get past this part…this conviction and repentance part…we get to grace.  Grace gives the A. Grace graduates us.

Surround yourself with truth tellers. People who will lead you to the Master Teacher.  People who will lovingly and tenderly call you out on your junk. Friends, we are all jacked up. You, me and all our neighbors, pastors, priests, teachers, politicians, leaders.  Don’t look to the right and left and think “they have no sin” or “I have no sin compared to them”. Jesus is the only one without sin.  As for us, we are all in the same boat…we are all castaways in need of rope.

Let Jesus be your teacher.  Spend time with Him.  Make Him the one you spend the most time with. As for your 5?  Hang around with people who point you to Him.

I look forward to seeing you all in our caps and gowns on graduation day…humbled and grateful for the way He handed out A’s.  All of us, incredulous at our good fortune, knowing the courses were tough and we could not have passed if not for Him.

©2015 Sue Bidstrup, Great Big Yes™, All Rights Reserved