One of the best prayer practices I’ve run across lately is the “breath prayer” – a prayer that is simple, easily remembered and very portable. However, the best part about it is not that it’s “easy” – in fact if we do it right it’s far from easy – but that it gets to the heart of things much more quickly by making a clear, concise statement to God. “Lord Jesus Christ, who takes away the sin of the world, have mercy on me.”
There is a great deal of theology, honesty, and beauty in that little prayer. The great thing is that we can focus our thoughts for a whole day on this one phrase and begin to understand the places where we are in need of God’s grace to transform us.
We begin to soften ourselves in certain areas of our life so that the Spirit can work and take back that “territory” of our hearts for God.
When dealing with anger: “Father, remind me that I’m not in control of the world.”
When dealing with greed: “Father, remind me that you’ve given me all I need.”
When dealing with bitterness: “Father, remind me how you have forgiven me.”
When dealing with self-centeredness: “Father, remind me how Jesus washed people’s feet.”
If we take those prayers and weave them into our daily comings and goings, we begin to rip up the soil and allow God to plant new seeds of life.
We can also customize them – my breath prayer for today and this week is “Father, remind me that my only worth and value is in You.” It is a reminder to me that even in the midst of criticism, my only worth and value is in God.
What are you dealing with today? What is one sentence you can pray for God to remind you of, in order that you could shed that struggle moment-by-moment?