“The Spirit of God has made me; the breath of the Almighty gives me life.” Job 33:4 (NIV)
One of the things I love about exercise are the constant reminders (to self or to others) to breathe. Regardless of the type of exercise — running, weight-lifting, yoga, etc. — we constantly need reminders to breathe. For some reason, we all tend to hold our breath when the exercise gets tough. We clench and try to gut it out and forget to breathe.
Isn’t that true in our spiritual journeys too? Isn’t it true that when we feel things getting tough, we “hold our breath” and try to gut it out. We clench and dig deep and rely on ourselves and our own ability to get through. Why do we do that, when the very thing we need to do is to breathe?
It is the breath of the Almighty that gives me life. When “the Lord God formed man from the dust of the ground, He breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.” (Genesis 2:7 NIV). It is His breath that gives me life. In the New Testament, the Greek word used for breath (“pneuma”) can also be translated “spirit” … so I can also say that it is His Spirit that gives me life.
So when I breathe, I invite the Spirit in. When I breathe, I let go of the need to gut it out and make it on my own. When I breathe, I invite the Spirit in, and I surrender to His life-giving and sustaining power. The breath of the Almighty gives me life!