The Bible is often compared to food, because it gives nourishment and strength to our spiritual lives just as vegetable, fruit, meat, and candy give nourishment and strength to our physical lives. We sing the lyrics of this song at Eagle LifeChurch, “This is my daily bread, God’s very word spoken to me.”
Prayer then could be compared to breathing. As breath gives life to our bodies and carries oxygen to every organ, system, and cell in our body; prayer brings life to every part of our lives and welcomes the Spirit of God into every moment of our day, every meeting, every meal, every business deal, every personal interaction. Prayer is how a believer’s faith is oxygenated.
When you take a breath you inhale the power of oxygen that will give life to your body. When you exhale you expel the poisonous carbon dioxide that will kill you if you breath it back in. Inhale. Exhale. That’s the rhythm of breathing. It takes both to sustain life. If all you do is exhale, you will die. If you inhale and hold it, you will die. Exhale. Inhale. Again.
Just as breathing is a pattern of exhale and inhale, so too is prayer. When we exhale in prayer we are doing what scripture teaches in 1 Peter 5:7, “Casting all your care upon him; for he cares for you.” We talk to God in prayer about our lives, about our anxieties, about our day. We release the poisonous toxins of stress and worry and he takes care of us.
If all you do is exhale, you will die. You must also inhale. In prayer inhaling is taking the time to listen to God as he speaks to you. Psalm 46:10 teaches us, “Be still and know that I am God.” We can enjoy the times of praise and music. We can be refreshed as we cry out to God, but we also must take care to spend time inhaling from him. What is God’s wisdom for your situation or a particular circumstance? What is His Spirit trying to reveal to you during this time?
Prayer is like breathing. Through prayer we invite the presence of God into our lives, we exhale our worries and inhale His peace. Take time today to spend time in prayer to the Father, through the Son, and in the Spirit.