– Today’s blog is from the book Pause: The Secret to a Better Life, One Word at a Time. Pick up your copy on Amazon or at:
We can choose to pause. A glance out the window instead of rushing to the computer. A walk in the neighborhood instead of texting a neighbor. Staring at a bird. Staring at a star. Staring at a cloud. Staring at artwork. Thinking about adding these words to life: slow, wait, rest. And these: not in a hurry, not so fast, not right now.
Inhaling and exhaling properly is good for our health. But not just physical health. All portions of life merge. My thinking can influence my praying. My sleeping can influence my forgiveness. And, my pausing can help me to notice what I normally ignore.
Give it a try. Glance at your upcoming schedule. What plans own you? What events thrill you? What experiences draw you closer to God? Do any lure you away from Him?
Let us be still. Breathing in the air, let us inhale and exhale fully aware of what matters most. Let us make changes if too much stuff is taking out too much of our lives.
Inhale. Pause. Exhale. Pause. Walk slowly. Read slowly. Type slowly. Stare for a long time. Enjoy this season of your life—one breath at a time.
· How can you find healthy breathing in the midst of your typical schedule?
We can always schedule any thing in the world to do but we often forget that we can schedule time with God. To have different parts of the day set a side just for Him. A place to pause in His lap and just be a child of God. To get to know Him more so we can become more like Him. We must sometimes slow down and not forget that it’s a relationship, that He really just wants to love us.
In order for me to “find healthy breathing” in my typical schedule I find it is important for me to be organized. Not so organized to the point where I have no room to change my schedule and allow God to move, but organized to keep on top of my commitments so I can not fall behind and constantly be in a rush. I find that if I am organized I have more time to pause and appreciate the small things in life and especially appreciate what God has blessed me with.
Being still and taking time? What is that? Definetly something I struggle with. I would much rather be on the go all the time than have time just to be idle. I have come to realize that with this semester. I have a lot of down time and it drives me crazy. However, in that down time I have found a new hobby of painting. It is something that requires time and patience. In it I find rest and peace. Things that are so hard to come by.
Breathing… a favorite of mine. Some of my most intimate times with God have been on a long drive when it is late at night (or early morning) and all I have to look at is the road ahead. It takes me to a place where I can appreciate the process because with all things there is the goal, the destination, but also the thing in the middle called the process that is usually what we find to be most difficult. However, with God we do not have to suffer through the process because when he gives us a vision and a destination, the process is what makes it fun.
So on the road… I stare at the road (and occasionally my mirrors) and enjoy the fact that yes, my destination is ahead, but why not appreciate the actual drive?
Remembering to stop and enjoy the things around me is often a challenge. I can get so caught up in everyday life and the craziness of a busy schedule that I just forget to simply breathe. The moments that I do remember are some of my favorite. And when things are extremely hectic I have to remind myself that taking a step back and simply breathing is the greatest thing I could and can do. I’m thankful for the little moments.
I get caught up in life so much. Breathing and taking time out of my schedule to relax, slow things down, and listen is very uncommon for me. Even during my bible study, i feel rushed and forced to get through it like its schoolwork. Some times pausing and relaxing is the best way to listen to God, and its so refreshing to know that i can do it anytime and anywhere, even right now when I’m writing this paragraph. i think the point of pausing and breathing is to let God dictate what we do, not the other way around. I always stick to my schedule, and i have the mentality to get things done ASAP, and this hinders my relationship with Christ. I need to learn less of me and more of Him, and i think taking time for more breathing, listening, and pausing on a daily basis will help me do that.
This is one of my favorite chapters from the Pause book. I find it so interesting that we must rest yet we find no time for it. My schedule is so crazy. I could list all things I am to do and the expectations that I must meet. In the end those lists just add to the pressure. I struggle to find time for breathing in a cluttered lifestyle. I feel as if my life needs order. I feel as if I am always in catch-up mode. I desire rest. I desire time to sit and wait. I miss those afternoons of not worrying about what tomorrow holds but resting in God in that moment. This is an incredible reminder that I need in my life. It is the only way to find wholeness.
This is a big struggle. My favorite word seems so often to be “yes.” I say yes to so many things and get caught up in the hustle of it all. Being able to stop and smell the roses would start with me learning to say no.
This was a great chapter in “Pause” that I need to remind myself of daily. I believe I don’t pause no where near as much as I should I am always in a hurry to complete the next task at hand. I believe a way that the Lord speaks to us is through the pauses we take however it’s up to us to pause or not, To hear God or not. As for me I need to take time to pause: slow down, breath, and soak everything in slowly.
God has been speaking to me frequently in the past two weeks about waiting. I’ve heard Him clearer than every before in the past few days and I know that my current task, aside from my job and school, is to wait. It’s been one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. I’m a doer. I always want to make things happen by some clever move. I know that I have to learn the skill of waiting and I’m trying to make it part of my routine. Just today I took a moment to go outside and take a walk for no reason other than the pleasure of it. It was needed and it made my day more fulfilling. I believe that incorporating breathing into my lifestyle daily will help me be more accustomed to waiting upon God.
Finding a moment to just enjoy life and not be so rushed is hard to do. I try to find time to just enjoy life and moments that God really wants me to enjoy by just spending time outside and not rushing home in the afternoon and just focus on the world and the road in front of me and not worrying about what I have to do when I get home and everything else.
This is a difficult discipline for me to implement in my life. I have so many “responsibilities” I feel like I always need to be doing something. I have to force myself to STOP, and make intentional conversations with people…a majority of the time when it’s not conducive to my schedule. Spending a few extra minutes in the cafeteria to engage in a conversation somebody needed to have, or picking my head up and making eye contact with a person while they are talking is essential in building meaningful relationships. As Luke alluded to, God is also teaching me to stop and breath in His word instead of rushing through it as if it were another thing on the checklist.
After reading this, I was challenged to slow down more. I realized that I am often rushed to get everything done, even to just read this blog. It seems that everything is better when you slow down to enjoy it.
Finding time to stop and breathe is hard on a daily basis. It seems like there are a million things going on at once. When I actually have the time to stop and take a minute to enjoy the world around me, it’s a wonderful thing. It’s in those little moments when I feel the most at peace and I can truly connect with God.
In my everyday life I am fully aware that I am too busy. I often have the habit of overcommitment and when I over commit, I often fail to properly prioritize. I’ve had to learn this the hard way. This semester has had many challenges and because I failed to pause, a few consequences resulted. I’m now looking at this second half of the semester and resting in the Father’s embrace. I’m choosing to pause more often, to stop going so fast, and to enjoy the journey not the destination.
One way that I incorporate breathing in my day to day schedule is something that you challenged me to do last semester. It is so easy, and I can practically do it without thinking more often. It is to count and breath to 15, 15 long breaths. Simple. Yet, that quarter of a minute can change the pace that I walk, talk, approach people, and work. It changes my attitude from rushing, and running, to relaxing, and recognizing God’s presence in that very moment. It is something that I do while walking across campus, or as I am falling asleep at night, or as I approach a big meeting, or presentation. That simple practice changes my entire persona in a matter of seconds.
My schedule as a senior in the biology department is far from slow. We always have something due, a test to take, a lab to preform, or a procedure to write. It becomes taxing at times. There are days that I ask the Lord, “Why have you told me to do this? I’m so stressed!” He always reminds me of Isaiah 41:10 which lets me know I’m not alone & there’s no need to fear; take a deep breath Hannah, I’m holding you up.
It is so hard to stop nowadays. I’m learning to take breaths and notice things more often.
I experienced something pretty great recently. I was driving from point A to point B and for once, I chose not to just zone out until I reached my destination, I actually took a look at the scenery that I had passed hundreds of times. The things I saw made me think about how much I just pass by without thinking twice about them. I would love to say that since then I have always taken a look at my surroundings when I drive. Sadly it is something I am still working on. But I think what it helped me to realize is that even in our mundane life, God is just waiting on us to realize his goodness, his greatness, and his awe inspiring self. All it takes is for us to take a look.
Breathing… Such a simple task. In the few seconds that we take a breath we can be spending time with god. We struggle to find moments where we want to force god into instead of letting it be and letting god. In those few seconds that you cant find in a day can be found in each breath we take. The more we think about incorporating god into our breathes the more it will slow us down and cause us to take a moment and either listen, or speak.
It’s about giving God time. The healthy breath of fresh air comes from a healthy dose of time with God. A moment in time where God and I just be. We just are. That time is non-replaceable. It is a must-have. It is the moment of putting up the “do not disturb” sign and breathing. It is necessary and vital.
I am learning to stop and wait, to just breathe and let God work. I so often max out my schedule and don’t take time to just stop and think. Recently, I drove home alone and in a matter of a few days, I had spent about 20 hours alone in the car. Though I expected it to be misery, it was incredible to just listen and spend time with God. I was so refreshed and it was such a reminder to just stop and breathe.
it seems like i am always busy doing something and then it seems i always have time to do something else. lately i find myself making time for pickup basketball, working out, intramural and my actual job but i never have time to do my hw or spend time with God. I’ve noticed my priorities need rearranging. I don’t take the time to just stop and spend time with God. But when i do i feel a relief.
“You don’t understand how good a thing you got till it’s gone.” Especially breath. It’s slightly terrifying when someone tells you you shouldn’t be breathing because your airway is almost entirely swollen shut. It is in that moment you realize every breath is a gift. We forget we are not promised or entitled to the next one. We don’t have to remember to make ourselves breathe, but how careless are we if we forget to allow ourselves to.