20 February 2012

Breath Prayers


I first heard the idea of "breath prayers" in Paul Miller's book A Praying Life. 

He says that the Greek Orthodox Church still uses a simple little prayer they call the Prayer of Jesus.

"Lord Jesus Christ, son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner."

Millers says that they call these types of prayers "breath prayers."

According to a really neat resource found on a site women of the United Methodist Church, breath prayers are "short, one sentence prayers that may be said in one breath as we breathe in and out."

HealthySpirituality.org says that "breath prayer generally involves quietly repeating a chosen phrase for several minutes, allowing the prayer to take on the shape of one's breathing so that the words accompany every breath."


Do you have a breath prayer?

During this season in your life, wherever you may find yourself, what piece of the Lord's promise do you need to breath deeply//in and out//all day long?

Lord, I put my trust in you.

Lord, you are all I need.

When I am weak, then I am strong in you.

You sustain me.

You give all things life.

You renew.

Father, you are my hope.

Lord, give me peace.

Lord, give me comfort.

Lord, give me strength.

That last one is mine. And it has been for a while. In my job, things come at me fast and very difficult situations and decisions tend to hit me from all angles. I find myself asking for strength many times throughout the day.

Like breathing, it's life giving. 


It isn't me asking Him to muster up strength that I already possess. It isn't Him reaching inside me and pulling some magical strength from my depths. Instead, I'm asking Him to give me the strength that can only come from Him. The power in knowing He is stronger than anything I'm battling. The assurance that He knows what is to come and will never leave my side. The comfort in knowing I serve a strong and mighty God. That He is my warrior. That He fights for me.

All of that in a simple four-word filling-of-my-lungs prayer.

11 comments:

  1. Breath prayers are so good for me because they put my focus on God, instead of the hassles and worries of life. Thanks for a great post.

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  2. This seems like such a simple and powerful way to "pray without ceasing". Great post.

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  3. I love these, often I get caught up in trying to pray lengthy prayers and telling God absolutely everything I'm feeling, I forget that God already knows my heart! All I have to do is say a few words and God will take care of it. :) Thanks for sharing. xoxo - Margaret

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  5. Thanks, Laura! We're actually in the middle of an Education Hour class on A Praying Life. (We have a lot of ties to SeeJesus Ministries at our church!) That was one of the things that has stuck out to me so far in the book.

    {On a completely unrelated note, one of my friends (also named Laura!) just took a position (as in a week ago) as an RD here in Lakeland at Florida Southern College and I immediately thought of you. Would you mind if I gave her your name as someone who is somewhat in the same boat in case she needs any support as she's acclimating to this new position?}

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  6. Amen.
    Beautiful post!
    God bless you!
    <3 Sarah

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  7. Those are just gorgeous photos! It's nice to find you on the grow your blog hop!
    Courtney

    http://www.club-content.com
    Teaming together for blog performance!

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  8. I hadn't heard of "breath prayers" before. What a great post! Thanks for sharing this!

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  9. I haven't heard of those before.. although I say them all the time! we share the same one! what a great post!

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  10. I've never heard of breath prayers either but what a great reminder. Just like we should be praying "constantly." It's definitely something great to think on. Maybe even "breath verses" that we can memorize and recite to ourselves to help us think on truth. I know those come in handy for me all the time and at the most opportune times they pop into my head. :)

    http://munchtalk.blogspot.com

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  11. I've never heard of breath prayers but I LOVE IT. And I pray them already. There are some days where all I can muster is a one sentence prayer every few hours.

    My breath prayer right now is "Lord, give me peace." Lots of anxiety happening in this mama's heart right now ... *sigh*

    Thanks for posting this, friend. <3

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