Over the past two weeks, I have noticed something rather strange, on several occasions, I have stopped breathing. Feeling more and more overwhelmed -- sitting at my kitchen table, enduring countless emails and Zoom meetings, with hunched shoulders, and a pounding headache -- I WAS NOT BREATHING!
Well not literally, I was taking very shallow and quick breaths and not the long deep inhales and exhales I was supposed to. Breathe In - 1...2...3...4. Breathe Out – 1...2...3...4. I even received encouragement from my friends, colleagues and even Iyanla -- to just Breathe In - 1...2...3...4. Breathe Out – 1...2...3...4. When I chose to Breathe In - 1...2...3...4. Breathe Out – 1...2...3...4 – miraculously, after only a few times, I found myself re-focused, recharged and restored -- slowly coming back to life, as it was meant to be.
Not surprisingly, the Holy Spirit began to stir thoughts in my mind about why breathing was so important and why I felt better after doing it intentionally. Of course, I knew that the “Breath of God” was a huge Christian concept that was relevant on many levels, but I just wasn’t sure yet, what connection I was supposed to make in this situation.
So like a good Christian Bible scholar, I Googled “scriptures about breath” (Yes, I do that too!) and hundreds of hits came onto my screen. I chose one, that “seemed” to be linked to a reputable website, and began to read the multiple times the Bible mentions the words “breath” or “breathe”. Slowly, I surrendered and allowed the Holy Spirit to do His job...which was to lead and guide me towards the truth of what God was speaking to me in this moment.
Here is what I understand in truth.
In this turbulent time, when our fear seems bigger than our faith, when we are afraid that our
breathing will be labored or there will not be enough ventilators to help us breathe...we can go to the Word of God and be reminded that it was His breath that gave us life in the garden (Gen. 2:7); that the very Word of God is in fact, God breathed (2 Tim. 3:16). There’s more...When He breathed on them they received the Holy Spirit (John 20:22) and it was His breath that entered the dry bones so that they would come to life (Ezekiel 37:5). It is His very breath that gives us life...so it’s no wonder why we begin to feel rejuvenated, refreshed and restored as we begin to Breathe In - 1...2...3...4 Breathe Out – 1...2...3...4.
His Word commands, “Let every thing that hath breath praise the LORD. Praise you the LORD” (Psalms 150:6). Take a breath -- Breathe In - 1...2...3...4. Breathe Out – 1...2...3...4, but with a new perspective of praise. Let everyone who has breath, praise God as though our lives depended on it, for they surely do. Let us breathe in love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control hope. Let us breathe out hate, depression, chaos, rudeness, anger, fear, greed, envy and pride. Come on...You can do it...You must do it...!
Take a deep breath and PRAISE THE LORD!