Tuesday, July 14, 2009

The Everyday

So today is Tuesday. A regular day with meals, laundry, a little decluttering, and a job outside our home. Oh and a class to take for new skills. And a sick teen still running a fever. And a visitor from another country coming into town on the train tonight. Full for sure. The question percolating in my brain: how to walk in grace throughout my day?

My heart's desire is to glorify God in all I do. The reality of my life is steps and missteps. A pastor whose teaching I sat under for many years said "we don't live this life perfectly. But what are you characterized by?" That question stuck with me. Truly our evaluation of our day will be flawed; we don't see ourselves as accurately as an outside perspective and not as thoroughly as God sees us. So how do we move toward the goal: "whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God".

We learn to breathe.

Now I know that probably sounds a little ridiculous but bear with me. Let's follow this train of logic. If we are filled with the Spirit of God (which a believer in the atonement of Christ is) then we are empowered to live a life which is pleasing to God. If He has given us all that we need then we are equipped to live a life which is pleasing to God. So since we have both strength and tools our job is to apply them. That's where learning to breathe comes in.

I am not talking about our normal oxygen intake here; I am talking about learning to breathe prayer. For years I have legalistically struggled to apply Paul's writing in Thessalonians and continually come up short. Which then has given the enemy of my soul a place to lie to me about my faith. I hope you are not there, but if you are, take heart! Their is grace for us not condemnation!

Learning to breathe. Inhale slowly focusing on the presence of God; exhale slowly saying or thinking a phrase like "in Your strength" or "by Your grace". I first heard about this type of prayer from Jan Johnson a few years ago. Ancient tradition calls this centering prayer. The point is for us to refocus on God and not on our circumstances; for us to be like Peter when he first got out of the boat--looking at Jesus and not at the waves.

This day will be full; my to do list and God's divine appointments (interruptions!). I will only get through it by His grace and in His power. Breathe in, breathe out....

Let me know how your breathing is coming!

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