daily devotional

Throughout the day you are breathing, and you likely never notice your breath. Breathing doesn’t require intentional effort, your body does the work without your consciousness even catching on. Until you can’t breathe … then you know. Your awareness is hyper focused on breathing when it is threatened.

I went over 40 years of my life, breathing without the awareness of the source of my breath. I simply never thought about it. Where does the air you breathe come from? It was a song I sang one Sunday morning in Church that changed my breathing called “Great Are You Lord”. It says: It’s your breath in our lungs, so we pour out our praise, pour out our praise. It’s your breath in our lungs so we pour out our praise to you only.

Genesis 2:7 says “Then the LORD God formed the man from the dust of the ground. He breathed the breath of life into the man’s nostrils, and the man became a living person.”

You and I are living at this very moment because of the breath of God. It is his breath that fills our lungs. It is his breath that gives us life. You have the breath of the Almighty within you, filling you, reviving you, bringing you life. And all you have to do is receive it.

Once I became aware of the source of my breath, I realized my habit of shallow breathing. By habit I take in just enough to do the job. Long term shallow breathing affects your health. Your body functions in a state of continual stress, lowering your immunity and lowers your energy.

But even worse, shallow breathing creates shallow living.

Are we just skimming the surface of all that’s truly available to us? Are we never going deeper into the life God is offering us only taking in enough to just get through?

When I look at the beauty of creation, I can’t imagine God created all of this for us to just get by. That isn’t his heart. His creation reveals his abundance and as his most prized and precious creation, he offers this abundance to us.

Newborn babies breathe deep. Their bellies expand and their chest rises and falls as they take in all life has to offer. We did the same when breath was new. Then we became used to it. We just expect God’s breath to be available and we allow it no special regard.

Practicing deep breathing creates a whole truckload of benefits:

Natural painkiller.
Improves blood flow.
Increases energy level.
Improves posture.
Reduces inflammation.
Detoxifies the body.
Improves digestion.
Relaxes your mind and body.
Now think about that, all of these positive results by doing one thing … breathing deeper. And what are we doing when we breathe deeper? We are intentionally receiving MORE of God. It is his breath that fills your lungs so naturally by breathing deeper, you are receiving more of him. And more of him heals us.

As I’ve been practicing deep breathing, I’ve learned a few things.

First, I have a limited capacity. Try taking the biggest, deepest breath you’ve taken all day. Your lungs quickly filled and you don’t notice a tremendous benefit, right? I don’t necessarily feel more energized, relaxed or improved in any way.

It’s like trying to add God into an already packed daily routine. There’s just not a lot of room in your life, right?

So what’s missing here?

The release.

In order to take a bigger, deeper breath, I must first let go of all the air I currently have. Shallow breathing continually holds a little air back. To receive more, you must be fully emptied first.

Let’s practice. Start by emptying your lungs of all the breath you currently have in a series of only exhales. When you think all the air is out of your lungs, exhale again, there’s more. Release. Release. Release. Now inhale filling your belly expand as it receives more and more and more.

Now you’re breathing deeper and you immediately notice the benefits. Feel the difference? This is MORE God filling you. The calming of your nerves, the relieving of your stress, and the surge of energy you now feel is simply a result of receiving MORE of what God is offering you, his breath.

And what did you have to first do to receive more? Let go of what you already had.

I’ve found God has been leading me on a journey of letting go of what I already had so I can receive more of his offering now. Could that be what your journey has been about to? A lesson in trusting him enough to be fully emptied.

Exhale. Let it go. Have faith God will fill you with what is needed next. And when he fills you after your complete exhale, you will be filled like never before.

I believe sometimes God allows our lives to be touched by disaster because it wakes us up and forces us out of shallow living. When all that was familiar is suddenly threatened, we are left breathing deeper, and when we breath deeper, we are receiving MORE God. How? It is HIS BREATH that fills our lungs. The complete exhale of what we had now opens the capacity for what God is offering.

Anything God has removed from your life has now created space for what he is offering. Exhale. Release. So you can receive more than you’ve ever had before.

With practice, this can be your new way of living. A continual release and emptying with faith to receive an abundant filling.

I want to be filled with an abundance of God. I must first release everything else. Exhale.

I want an abundance of God in my daily life. I must create space for him. Exhale.

I want an abundance of God in my future. I must willingly let go of how I thought it should look. Exhale.

First the release, the exhale, more, more, more. Hold nothing back so you can fully receive.

Now be filled with all God is offering. Inhale. This is an abundant filling.

This is deeper living with a dependence on God. If I let go of all this air, then God I’m depending on your breath to fill my lungs back up. If I let go of all my plans, then God I’m depending on you to show me the way. If I let go of everything I thought I was, then God I’m fully reliant on you to show me who I am.

May you be aware of the offering of God.
May you have the faith to fully release all you’ve been holding back.
May you receive an abundant filling today.