31 Days of Learning to Breathe: Holding your Breath

I applaud those who have written for 24 days straight so far. I just haven't seemed to be able to. But I won't beat myself up over it. And, I'm not sure anyone notices because, there haven't been any comments. Haha! 

How long can you hold your breath? Me? Not for long. There have been records set for 22 minutes, 24 minutes....are you kidding me? Typically someone can hold for a minute. A trained diver can hold theirs for 11 minutes or so. Which is still kind of crazy. Sometimes life's circumstances can leave us "holding our breath" so to speak. And while the ability to hold our breath naturally for longer periods of time can be seen as healthy, figuratively speaking, it's not that healthy. If we spend so much time holding our breath, we won't spend enough time breathing deeply, really living. Holding your breath is usually a sign of anxiousness, or anticipation, often of an outcome and often a negative one, though to be fair, sometimes we hold our breath in excitement. 

But do you ever feel like you are just going through the motions of life, waiting for a ball to drop, waiting for something to happen, waiting for that break? Are you holding your breath because life isn't what you wanted it to be, that teenager is making choices that break your heart and you don't know what's coming next, or your baby is colicky and you are at the end of your sanity. The scenarios can go on and in some way or another we can all relate. We can all say we've held our breath a little too long, a little too often.

It's time to release your breath. It's time to just let it go. It's time to start living, even if it's amid a mess and chaos and the unknown. Give yourself permission to live, and to live fully. Even in the midst of pain, heartache, confusion, grief, you must keep living. You must keep going. If you're holding your breath, you're missing so much. Yes, maybe you might say "well, you don't know my circumstance. I don't know if I can feed my children, or if my spouse will come home", etc. You are right, I don't know what that is like, but I do know that I'm speaking to myself too when I say we need to keep breathing, to take advantage and suck in all the beauty around us that we can. We need to breathe in hope, and love and faith. We need to breathe in our identity and our wholeness. We need to breathe in the truth about us. 

Often the root of our breath holding, the negativity, etc, is fear! 

"Fear's focus feeds on frustration, lack, lies, need, worry, anxiety, jealousy, anger, inferiority, suspicion, guilt, depression, ungratefulness, cynicism, etc. Faith is fueled by love. Love believes. Love values potential above performance or disappointment." God Believes in You, Francois DuToit

Don't let fear drive you. Don't let it steer the ship. Go ahead.....take that deep breath! Don't let fear win! YOU get to win! YOU get to call the shots, even in the midst of contradiction, YOU can choose how you will live and respond. How you will live and move and have your being, as the verse says. 

What do you say?

With Joy Unquenchable,


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