Today, many of us celebrate Christmas Eve. Our lives ramp themselves up to a fever pitch. Perhaps this is the busiest, and the most stressed we will be in this entire year.
Many of the things we do are good things. Some of them are great things. Tradition and culture pressure us to rush here and there. Family and friends are hoping to see us. More than a few of our tasks are duties, expectations that we don’t feel we can escape.
This all can leave precious little room for the most important things. The things that we know are best.
It’s not so different from the Jesus story: there was no room at the inn. There should have been. But there wasn’t.
As pressures mount, I hope that today’s practice makes some room in the inn that is within you. This practice is partially rooted in the Genesis account, which states that God reached down into the earth. When God breathed into that dirt,something happened which made that dirt the very first human. Perhaps this is where we inherited God’s image.
I believe that God’s initial act of creation is an ongoing event. With each breath, God breathes into us.
Today’s exercise might be easiest to access via an audio file. Click here to listen to it. Continue reading if you would rather approach this exercise in it’s written form.
I would love to hear how this is going! And I know that others will benefit from this to! Please leave a comment below.
Here is the audio version of today’s practice:
1. Sit up, straight and comfortable.
2. For the duration of your practice today, release yourself from your comitments. Give yourself permission to engage this practice fully.
3. Take a deep, cleansing inhale. Place your hand on your belly and do your best to feel it move; fill your lungs from the bottom, up.
4. Exhale fully, from the bottom of the lungs through the top.
4. With your next inhale, see that this in-breath is God breathing into you.
5. Exhale, fully.
6. With your next inhale, remind yourself of God’s presence, breathing into you.
7. Exhale, again.
8. Inhale God’s breath into you.
9. For these next few breaths, we will focus on the exhales. With each breath we will be exhaling tension from our body. Continue to breathe slowly and fully.
10. remember that each inhale comes straight from God as we engage this.
11. Inhale, God’s breath.
12. Now, exhale. But with your breath, exhale the tension from your feet and calves. Blow it out through your mouth.
13. As you inhale God’s breath, feel it filling your all the way down to your feet.
14. As you exhale, breathe out the stress from your knees and thighs.
15. Inhale a breath straight from God. This breath is what makes you human.
16. Exhale the tension from your lap and buttocks.
17. Inhale God’s breath into the space you have made. Feel it travel downward from the lungs to the whole lower half of your body.
18. Exhale the tension from your abdomen and lower back.
19. Feel God breath out, and into you.
20. Exhale the tension from your chest and upper back.
21. Inhale a breath from God. Feel the breath first fill your lungs. Let that divine breath fill up the empty space you have made.
22. Exhale the tension from your next and shoulders.
23. Inhale and feel God’s breath fill you from toes to neck.
24. Exhale the tension from your head. Feel it leave your brow, jaw, and the base of your skull. Exhale this stress with your breath.
25. Now, as we begin to draw this exercise to a close, continue to draw God’s breath into the empty space you have created. With this next inhale, feel that this oxygen that is spreading to every inch of you is carrying God’s love.
26. Exhale stress and tension.
27. Inhale, and see that God’s breath is filling up the empty space within you with the deepest Peace.
28. Exhale your worries and concern.
29. With this next inhale, bring God’s breath into the tips of your fingers and toes. Draw it up to the top of your skull. Feel it in all the places in between. And know that this breath is peace.