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Yoga Prayers

She needed inner healing, and needed it fast.

Julie Garmon

I couldn’t believe what my doctor was telling me.

“I need to monitor you closely, Julie, for whatever might come next.”

I had just been diagnosed with two autoimmune disorders–celiac disease and Sjögren’s Syndrome. What more could happen?

“I wish I could be more definite, Julie,” my doctor continued. “But autoimmune illnesses cause the body to attack healthy tissue. They are really quite unpredictable.”

As I left his office, I felt a cold rush of fear. How could I live like this?

The minute I got home, I went looking for help on the internet. The information there was even more vague and frightening. By bedtime, my mind was whirling with negative thoughts. My body was under attack from itself. How could that be?

I couldn’t close my eyes until I’d said a prayer. Oh, God, I feel so alone. So vulnerable. Help me know that you are with me.

In the morning I was still so preoccupied with worry that I barely made it to my yoga class in time. I walked in, took a swig from my water bottle and tried to calm down. As Velda, our instructor, led us through the poses, I breathed deeply to clear my mind. Today that was impossible.

At the end of class I lay tense on my mat, my mind racing. All was quiet. Then Velda did something totally unexpected, something she had never done in the year I had been taking her class.

“Our Father who art in heaven…” she began to recite.

She was ending the class with the Lord’s Prayer! Others soon joined in. The sound of those voices praying soothed me deeply. My mind cleared. The tension in my shoulders eased. The knot in my stomach disappeared. Peace filled me.

I made sure to thank Velda. “I needed that prayer more than the yoga today,” I told her.

“You know, I didn’t plan to do that,” she said. “But something told me I just had to say it.” Or Someone.

I rolled up my mat and headed home. I knew that no matter what the future held, it would be God and not fear leading me through it.

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