The Scripture ~ God, the Master, told the dry bones, “Watch this: I’m bringing the breath of life to you and you’ll come to life. I’ll attach sinews to you, put meat on your bones, cover you with skin, and breathe life into you. You’ll come alive and you’ll realize that I am God!” Ezekiel 37: 5-6
The Spiritual Focus ~ “That breath you just took, that is a gift.” Rob Bell, U.S. American author and speaker
The Breath Prayer ~ Inhale ~ breath is, Exhale ~ a gift
The Devotion ~ [Today’s devotion opens up with a story from Yogadevotion owner Pastor Cindy Senarighi]
Sitting in church on Saturday night, I was spellbound by the gospel song,“Ain’t No Grave Gonna Hold Me Down,” and the voice of the soloist singing it. It is an American gospel song, made famous by Johnny Cash, and originally written by a 12-year-old boy who was suffering from tuberculosis. . The soloist sang the song with such passion and power that I wondered how she could catch her breath in between phrases. Instinctively, I took a deep breath, as if to share my breath with her. Sitting beside me, my daughter turned to me and said, “You do that a lot, you know.” “Do what?” I asked. “Breathe loudly,” she responded. I have since noticed that that is true. I do often take a deep breath. Taking a deep breath (not a sigh) is a practice that is, at once, a response to the gift of life and a desire to share that gift with others.
The scripture for today’s devotion comes from a vision of the prophet Ezekiel. As he stands in the center of a valley of death and dry bones, he sees the bones come alive with God’s breath. This vision has inspired songs, stories, art and as well as our imaginations about what God’s breath can do. This story of God breathing life into the dry bones inspires us to imagine what God can breathe into our life and the lives of all people.
Asana, or yoga poses, is the doorway to breath. Our physical movement settles us into our breath and supports us as we walk through the doorway into the world around us. We are given many opportunities to breathe deeply. Our breath can become a prayer for those affected by the bombing in Sri Lanka, where no words could be spoken. We take a deep breath as we watch the seasons transition. And when we come to our mats or sit in our chairs, we breathe in the gift of life and breathe out sharing the gift of God’s breath that promises life to those around us and all creation.