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The Magnolia Story

Major Announcement for all of you who are not following me on social media! (Mom)

I am so excited to be a part of the:

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Y’all.  For real. We are called the Shiplappers.  I love this so much. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, tune into the show, Fixer Upper, on HGTV.  Do a push up every time someone says Shiplap. 🙂

The darling Chip and Joanna Gaines have written a book, The Magnolia Story,  and I get to help spread the word and give some sneak peeks.  However, I’m challenged on my blog skills and I can’t figure out how to sneak peek over here on the blog.  For that reason, you must join me on Facebook (@GreatBigYES) and/or Instagram (@suebidstrup) and/or Twitter (@greatbigyes) to get all the good stuff.  Mom…I know.  Don’t worry.  I will send you a link in email.

If you don’t know them, Chip and JoJo (we’re best friends now) find houses for people and redesign and remodel and redecorate them.  I want to live in every single one. Gorgeous.

But my favorite thing about them is the way they love each other.  They laugh and are silly and have so much joy in their lives.  Guess what? They LOVE JESUS! So, while I’m excited about shiplap and silos and the farm and Waco and all the things…I’m most excited about the way they love the Lord and each other.  It’s an honor to help share their story.

Here’s an intro:

©2016 Sue Bidstrup, Great Big Yes™, All Rights Reserved

Bold Love

If you follow Great Big Yes on social media – Instagram, Twitter or Facebook – you know that I am participating in a Holy Yoga photo a day challenge.  Each day of the month has a topic and each person posts a picture for that day with #hyphotoaday. It’s fun! So today’s topic is “Calling”.

Being the good rule follower that I am, and reverting back to my Sunday school days when priests would talk about “calling” as this ominous, kind of threatening thing…I immediately went to “What does God want from me?”  What is it that I am supposed to do…perform…achieve…make happen?  What is God calling me to do? Along with that comes the fear, Oh my gosh…what if I don’t do it?  What if I fail?

Then I read this in the Bible.  This is the verse that keeps coming up for me.

I suspect you would never intend this, but this is what happens.  When you attempt to live by your own religious plans and projects, you are cut off from Christ, you fall out of grace.  Meanwhile we expectantly wait for a satisfying relationship with the Spirit.  For in Christ, neither our most conscientious religion nor disregard of religion amounts to anything.  What matters is something far more interior: Faith expressed in love.   -Galatians 5:4-6 (Message)

This reminded me.  I am called to LOVE.

I decided to post this for the challenge:

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Because let’s be honest.  It takes boldness to love.

I’m not talking about the boldness that comes off as brash and know it all.  I’m not talking about the kind of bold that separates people.

God’s kind of bold is about loving.  It’s about being different…unique…standing out.  God’s love reaches out to others.  To love in this way takes courage. This boldness is about vulnerability and authenticity.

In today’s world, when we love like this, we are different. To truly love we must put aside ego and expectation and performance and judgment and grudges and past hurts.  That’s difficult.

But we are not alone.  God doesn’t ask us to do something and leave us.  He equips us.  He walks with us.

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” (NIV) –Joshua 1:9

What is so exciting about this is that we are all in this together.  Everyone is called to love.

No matter where we are or who we are or what we do for a living…It’s all sacred space filled with sacred people trying to live out their sacred calling.

©Sue Bidstrup, 2013 Great Big Yes™ All Rights Reserved

Freedom, Sunshine and Open Hearts

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This is how I feel today.

That’s Jesus breaking out of the tomb. I love how he’s running. He’s free.

We are free too.

That’s the miracle of Easter.  I hope you had a good Easter and I hope you feel God’s amazing power and grace.

Today is a new day.

Just like Jesus, I feel like running.  I feel like running toward the light and breaking the chains…the chains of winter and eating too much sugar and watching too much tv and feeling couped up.  I feel like beginning again.  The sun is out and that changes everything.

I think it has something to do with watching The Bible miniseries too.  I mean…how awesome was that?!?!?! The way the disciples put their lives in danger to speak the truth of Jesus…incredible.  The whole thing was so inspiring.

God set this up perfectly you know.  This whole thing.  All of it.  Lent. Easter. Winter. Spring. Periods of darkness. Great Light. His Truth. Our Hope. Trust. Faith. History. Paul. Matthew. Thomas. Mary. Mary Magdelene.  You. Me.

It’s true.  We are on that list with the disciples.  We don’t see Him but we know.  We are those people Jesus speaks of when he says, “Blessed are those who have not seen but still believe.”  That’s us! He’s calling us!  We are living in this place, at this time, with these people for a reason.

Sometimes we don’t know what the reason is.  Sometimes I sit around and wonder and read and think and ask and try to figure it out.  Sometimes I strive and I reach and I struggle and I want to accomplish.  But today I think it’s about just living.  Just living in the light.  Just doing the “next right thing” as Glennon says on Momastery.com.  (By the way, she was on the Today show this morning which also puts a huge spring in my step- Go Glennon! Her book comes out today!)

Another reason I’m very excited is that I get to go on my Holy Yoga retreat this month! I can’t wait to come back from retreat and start teaching and sharing Holy Yoga with all of you.

In the meantime, I  figure it’s never to early to start sharing something good.  I will be participating in the first Holy Yoga Challenge.  I have no idea what this means but I feel God nudging me to do it.  It’s just like when I signed up for training to teach Holy Yoga.  I had no idea what I was doing but I felt God prompting me to sign up.   And with each of these times (and others) when I have followed my heart and said a GREAT BIG YES! to the things that honor God and help me live my faith…I have never looked back.  I have been richly blessed on these roads even when I don’t know where they are heading.  So I step out again in faith.  I think it’s appropriate the Holy Yoga challenge is about heart openers.  Because to really step out in faith, we don’t need to know it all.  We don’t need to be able to predict the outcome.  We don’t need to strive and reach and accomplish.  We just need to open our hearts.  Here’s to an April filled with open hearts and freedom and lots of sunshine!

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Speaking of yoga, I am SO GRATEFUL to BlogHer Health for sharing and promoting my blog post “Humble Warrior” http://www.blogher.com/humble-warrior?page=full – thank you!

©2013 Sue Bidstrup, Great Big Yes™ All Rights Reserved
picture of Jesus from facebook @teenjesusfreaks