“The Spirit of God has made me, and the breath of the Almighty has given me life.” – Job
One of the biggest take-aways I learned from my intensive therapy a few years ago (and one that I most forget) is the power of breathing. Whenever anxiety would fill my soul, I would simply take deep breathes and the anxiety would slowly dissipate. I didn’t understand fully then why breathing made such a difference, but whenever I did it, it worked wonders for my body, mind and soul.
What’s the first thing you do when you anticipate hearing bad news? You hold your breath. And then when it turns out to be good news after all? You breathe out a sigh of relief. Give that a thought for a minute.
Breathe? What the?
Yes, I know. You don’t need to be reminded to breathe because you do this without thought. Which is exactly the point.
It’s to pay attention to every breath you take as you transition into every action you are doing. Right away, as I breathe into waking up, I feel very much human and comfortably so as if I am being Held strongly and firmly. Gratitude fills up my lungs and I can pay attention to the Grace that surrounds me and the Goodness within me.
As I breathe into writing every single word for this post on my IPAD first thing in the morning (as I am nursing my half-sleeping almost 3 year old baby), I become aware not of my jumbled thoughts that usually distract and derail, but of the Story that is rushing through from somewhere Deep Within. The Story I need to share right this very minute. My heart pumps with calm excitement as I breathe into creating what is to Be.
As I breathe into greeting my husband (who is gonna ride his brand new spanking bike to work, woot!) and my daughter for the day, it readies me to bring Joy into whatever craziness and of course calm that comes our way.
That’s it. Just Breathe.
Simple, no? Crazy challenging? Heck yah.
Because we are driven to and addicted to mad distractions, petty performances, purist ambitions and unrelenting cruel thoughts about how we suck, how life sucks and and how things ought to be.
Breathe and you are on your way to getting unstuck.
Because to be conscious of our breath is to be conscious of life unfolding right before our very eyes. Which helps us become conscious of our God-given ability to participate in the Joy and create Beauty in our everyday beginning now.
Breathe and you are on your way to practicing the very presence of God.
Are you unknowingly breathing just a little (or perhaps puffing too much) and calling it a life? I invite you to join me today as I breathe towards practicing God’s presence. Just try it for a little bit and see for yourself the difference it makes. And then let me know how it goes in the comments below.
Nourishing Words To Breathe In Life To Your Day:
- All the while my breath [is] in me, and the spirit of God [is] in my nostrils. – Job
- When the breath wanders the mind also is unsteady. But when the breath is calmed the mind too will be still, and the yogi achieves long life. Therefore, one should learn to control the breath. ~Svatmarama, Hatha Yoga Pradipika
- A healthy mind has an easy breath. ~Author Unknown
- If you woke up breathing, congratulations! You have another chance. ~Andrea Boydston
- Inhale, and God approaches you. Hold the inhalation, and God remains with you. Exhale, and you approach God. Hold the exhalation, and surrender to God. ~Krishnamacharya
- Breath is Spirit. The act of breathing is Living. ~Author Unknown
- How To Breathe Correctly (From Mark’s Daily Apple)
I was reminded of how essential this practice is when I got my weeky email newsletter from Lisa Byrne at the Well Grounded Campus (you should subscribe!) and it’s the simplest (and yet extremely challenging) practice I can do right this very minute.