This post concludes what I began a couple of days ago. The Breath Prayer has its origins in the story of Jesus meeting blind Bartimaeus, as recorded in Mark 10:46-52. After Bartimaeus cried out, Jesus responded by asking, What do you want me to do for you? Bartimaeus told him that he wanted to see. Then Jesus declared that Bartimaeus’ faith had healed him.
To begin the process of discovering your breath prayer, picture Jesus coming to you and asking the same question: Your name, what do you want me to do for you? Without being overly analytical, respond from your heart. It may be that you want healing of some sort, or inner peace, or reconciliation in a relationship. It may be any of a myriad of matters that are part and parcel of the challenges of life.
Here is the challenging part. Frame your request in a short sentence (3-6 syllables). When I identified my first Breath Prayer, my request was for inner peace. My sentence became, Give me peace. After naming your request in a sentence, then personalize the request by calling God a name, which is familiar, and comfortable.
Again for me, my completed sentence was, Lord, give me peace.
I invite you to repeat your Breath Prayer early in the morning for five minutes, while doing nothing else. You can say it out loud or quietly to yourself. You may choose to emphasize different words of your prayer as you repeat it. Next, as you go through your day, say the Breath Prayer as often as you remember it.
The Breath Prayer is not something that is often changed. I utilized my first Breath Prayer for seven years. This is a prayer of faith. First, we believe that Jesus is just as present to us through the Holy Spirit as he was in the flesh to Bartimaeus. Second, we believe that God hears and responds to us as we persistently call out to Him. Third, using the Breath Prayer cultivates a growing awareness of the presence of God throughout our days.
May God be revealed to you in deeply rewarding ways.