God formed Man out of dirt from the ground and blew into his nostrils the breath of life. The Man came alive—a living soul! Genesis 2:7 (MSG)
Most of us take breathing for granted. We wake up and get on with our lives giving little thought to the vital life force that keeps us alive. And unless you suffer from respiratory problems you possibly give breathing little thought.
I did too, until recently when a massage therapist told me that I wasn’t breathing deeply and that to assist in my pain relief, I need to learn to breathe deeper. So, I did some research, and it appears that most of us are not breathing correctly. Instead of using our diaphragms correctly we short-circuit this and our breathing becomes shallow. In addition to this, apparently, we also mimic the breathing of those around us. And apparently people who are always rushing and busy don’t breathe very deeply either.
Deep breathing relaxes the body, and the mind and aids correct posture. Professional singers and speakers and divers are some of those individuals who have learnt how to breathe deeply and to achieve good breath control. They don’t take breathing for granted.
Breath is life. Without breath, I am a corpse. Without oxygen flowing through my body and brain, I am dead. I can live for months without food, weeks without water, but only minutes without air.
But despite all the facts, I still take breathing for granted. And maybe this means I’m taking the blessings and the goodness of the Father for granted too. God forbid.
This morning as you wake and walk around, talk, make breakfast, drive, offer a prayer of thanks for the breath of life that enables you to live.
Father, we take breathing for granted. But there are so many people with respiratory conditions who are grateful for air. There are also those who suffer panic attacks who appreciate the need for deep breathing. We are blessed that in our ‘green and pleasant land’ there are open spaces where the air is cleaner and we can breathe freely. When we say thank you for life, our prayer is actually, thank you that I’m breathing.
Dr. Kirk Thomas is the director for Publishing and Personal Ministries at the British Union of Seventh-day Adventist Church in the UK & Ireland.