Breathing is the practice of inhaling, taking in, and exhaling, letting out. The constant intake and outtake of air is crucial for life. There have been a few lessons I have learned through healing from my birth defect, but breathing has been the biggest physical one. I spent many years taking in shallow inhales, instead of deep full breaths. Learning to breathe is hard. Such a simple but complex part of every living persons day is difficult for me. I spent so many years taking in bits of air, that taking in big bunches of it overwhelms me. I can’t regulate myself, so I go back to taking in shallow bursts.
I notice this strongly when I am circuit training. There are certain movements that I have learned to breathe through. I’ve found rhythm there. But there are others where I get so caught up in the speed and form that I forget to breathe, which in circuit training you feel the effects of quickly. I go from pumped and in the zone to exhausted and completely out of breath. I stop and pace, until I can breathe again. Deep and full. Deep and full. It is frustrating to me, that after several years I still can’t seem to get my breathing straight. Even at rest I catch myself doing the bare minimum to receive air. I have become extremely aware of how much I take in and let out.
The air we breathe is important. What we let in and let out of our lives is crucial, it is vitally important to our health and to our soul too.
As I go between feeling strong and weak during my circuits, I become more aware of the discipline it takes to be whole. To move precisely, is to gain strength, but it is weakened without the discipline of my breathing. I am in and of myself swayed from short and shallow to deep and purposeful in my life. It takes discipline to look around and through the flow of intake to turn from short and shallow to embrace the deep and purposeful. It takes discipline to wrestle with God and to know him. I need the constant taking in of Him because He is the best air for me and He enables me to exhale what is good for others. I find rhythm in areas that I have grown in, but there are many others where I go from speed to burn out. It is frustrating that after many years of walking with Christ, I do not have the rhythm with Him. I still try to make it on my own until once again I realize how little I am taking in and letting out.
As I discipline my body to breathe in and out fully, I am reminded that it takes discipline to be in relationship with Christ and live out what He has given me. To breath fully. To live whole.