Breathe, just breathe

November 20, 2020,
Good afternoon,
” Breathe in through your nose, and out through your mouth.When you inhale, feel your stomach expand ( as opposed to your chest )When you exhale, feel your stomach contract.Continue this at your own pace, at your own time.When you inhale, feel that you are taking in positive uplifting energy [ or God ]When you exhale, feel that you are releasing any negative, toxic energy.

A few times the Gospel writers state that Jesus goes away to be by himself. The writers do not say anything about that time, but that Jesus prayed. I guess even the Son of God has to recharge. I would think being in front of people, teaching his disciples and healing many people would be exhausting. After all, Jesus was human. How did Jesus pray to his father in heaven ? Did he pray in Hebrew, Aramaic or Greek ?

The above quote comes from a book called Think Like A Monk by Jay Shetty. He has ideas and practices to help the Western world to slow down, pray more and be more attentive to your spiritual life. What he says is not new to the world or to the church. He calls on us to return to a time of less stress, and be more aware of the things that are toxic in our lives. We want to take the sin or toxicity out of our lives.

Breath is fundamental to life. If we do not breathe, we die. If we have trouble breathing it affects our whole being. So, Shetty’s first practice is to think about our breathing. He says to be calm, at peace, at rest and relax, and then do the simple breathing technique. Yoga teachers say that yoga is about relearning how to breathe, and a little exercise.

Think about Jesus going away up the mountains just north of Galilee. There are no lights, no cars and no sounds. Jesus with creation. And now he breathes, and speaks to God, as he slows down and becomes aware of his heart beating, every beat. He can now forget his busyness, and focus on the Almighty and Everlasting One. Jesus is renewed and ready for ministry.

Dear Holy One Creator of the Sun and Moon and stars
Redeemer of all of us, in this world
Sustainer of us, loving us with all your heart, soul and mind.
Lover of all the church
Compassionate one to all the pain and brokenness in our earth.
Giver of all that is good in the world.

Hater of sin that destroys people, relationships and the creation.
Thank you for your grace your love and Your sacred presence
Breathe on us your breath, O God. AMEN 
Tread on bold new paths!
Fireflies flash the direction
Hope springs eternal !          Monica Pieper Landoni 2020

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