Just Breathe – Exhale

Praise the Lord for video calling! The other day our daughter called us from Colorado and turned her phone to our grandson who has figured out how to make some new sounds other than crying for food or to be held. Both of our hearts melted wanting to jump through the screen and give him a big hug. Crazy what a few babbles will do to grandparents hearts.

As I was pondering the joys of hearing my grandson from across the Atlantic Ocean I thought about the Father’s joy when we exhale our voices to Him in prayer. Like a baby at times it may be an unintelligent babble, grunts or groans (Romans 8:26), but He is thrilled by the fact that we acknowledge our need for Him through prayer.

One of the greatest signs that we believe in God is taking time to talk with Him as a Father and as a friend. If you look at all the heroes of faith; Abraham and Sarah, Moses, David, the prophets, and the apostles all had an intimate relationship with the Father. Jesus, is the greatest example, as He would often slip away to commune with His Abba in prayer as this was the source of His existence (Mark 1:35).

Last week I shared about the importance of spiritual breathing and how we must first inhale the Word of God. On a daily basis we need to tune into the Father’s voice through a meditative reading of His life giving breath, found in 66 inspired books of the Bible.

However we are not only called to inhale the Word, but also exhale the promises from the Father back to Him. If we just inhale without the exhaling we will spiritually die. Spiritually breathing keeps the heart healthy and alive. A constant rhythm of both is necessary.

In last week’s blog I shared how at the start of my day I inhale a Psalm. To slowly breathe in the Scripture until I hear the voice of the Spirit speak to me through it. As I hear Father’s voice in His Word, I respond by taking out my journal and write a prayer back to Him. Sometimes it leads me to spend most of my time in prayer and thanksgiving. At other times the conviction of sin is heavy and I write out my sins before Him asking for the blood of Jesus to forgive me and create in me a clean heart.

There is something powerful about praying the promise of the Father’s Word back to Him or even singing them. My parents, grandparents, great grandparents, and great-greats used to sing the Psalms every Sunday at church and even in their homes. The older I get I see the amazing benefits of how that helped them spiritually breathe and made them strong in the midst of trying days.

As our days grow more challenging we are called to be a family of believers that thrive by spiritually breathing in and out the Word of God. If God’s children “Just Breath” deeply inhaling and exhaling, we will reflect the glorious breath of God that can bring abundant life to a suffocating world.

This Sunday we witnessed the Word of God in power and many inhaled it touching the deepest hurts in their heart. Many responded by coming forward breathing out childlike prayers, many with groans and tears and their Father in heaven rejoiced by sending the life-breath of His Spirit bringing healing and joy!

Remember, Just Breathe!!!


Oceans Israel Trip – May 2023

Just Breathe- Inhale


Trying to stay warm on a blistery wet winter day in South Africa, Patty and I covered ourselves with blankets, consumed hot coffee, and distracted our minds with good books. Patty was reading about the importance of correct breathing for your health and wanted me to practice with her. I paused my reading and gave it a try. A deep Inhale through your nose and exhale through pursed lips, repeating this 3 to 10 times. The goal was to relax the body from stress and help me sleep.

Ironically in my current book, I just finished a chapter entitled “Breathe” highlighting spiritual breathing. The author talked about the vital necessity of followers of Christ to daily inhale the Word of God and exhale prayer. After practicing the breathing exercise  and my recent reading and I found myself reflecting on spiritual breathing and the fact that the Holy Spirit uses the Word and Prayer to oxygenate our spiritual lungs.

Just as we need to inhale and exhale to live so too with the Word and Prayer, both work together imparting spiritual oxygen for us to thrive spiritually. Today’s focus is on the importance of daily inhaling the precious Word of God and next week I will touch the how prayer is spiritual exhaling.

The first thing I do when I wake up in the morning is start the coffee. I know-perhaps I have a problem. But for me sipping a hot mug of coffee with a jolt of caffeine helps shift my brain into gear. As I sit in my favorite spot keeping the coffee close I pick up my Bible and INHALE my Psalm for the day. For me reading a Psalm opens my mouth to breathe in the spiritual oxygen needed to start my day. If I miss this sacred time I can sense it throughout the rest of the day.

Please note, this is not meant to be a legalistic practice that I must do to receive a star on my chart or to persuade the Father to love me more. I just really need His voice to get my heart filled with the breath of heaven to prepare me for the day. The Father’s voice must be the first one I hear before all the other voices begin to make noise.

As I listen for His voice in the Psalms I always look for Jesus His gift of saving love. From Genesis to Revelation we have this Good News, that the Father has had a plan before the creation of the world to show us the full extent of His love through His very own Son Jesus. Every Word in the Old Testament points to Jesus and in the New Testament the Word becomes flesh and we see in Jesus the perfect love of the Father for His lost sons and daughters (See John 1:1-18).

Today more than ever we need to breathe in the Good News of the gift of Jesus Christ. The Word from Abba Father who tells us we are forgiven, we are healed, we are son’s and daughters of His Kingdom, and we are completely and forever loved through the life, death, resurrection and reign of Jesus Christ.

I challenge you to take time today to breathe in the Word of love to you from your Good, Good Father!

“Remember what you were taught from your childhood from the Holy Scrolls which can impart to you wisdom to experience everlasting life through the faith of Jesus, the Anointed One! God has transmitted His very substance into every Scripture, for it is God-breathed. It will empower you by its instruction and correction, giving you the strength to take the right direction and lead you deeper into the path of godliness. Then you will be God’s servant, fully mature and perfectly prepared to fulfill any assignment God gives you.” 2 Timothy 3:15-17 TPT



“Come into My Heart”

Have you ever had a song stuck in your head that won’t go away? For the past week I keep singing over and over a song I learned years ago in Sunday school:

“Come into my heart, come into to my heart, come into my heart Lord Jesus, come in today come in to stay come into my heart Lord Jesus..”

Do you remember that song? What prompted me to think about it and sing my own version of it was meditating on Matthew 11:28-29:

“Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart and you will find rest for your souls.”

This verse it is about Jesus inviting us into His heart. A heart that is “gentle and humble,” a heart like no other, the only heart in all the world that can give us true rest.

Recently I finished a book for the second time called “Gentle and Lowly,” by Dane Ortlund. The book is centered on Matthew 11: 28-29 and highlights the heart of Jesus. In this powerful book Ortlund, states that “this is the only place in the Gospels where Jesus describes His heart.” His heart is full of mercy and grace, His heart continually calls us to come and experience a healing, forgiving home of love.

The enemy will do all in his power to keep us from the heart of Jesus. His lies include: you are not worthy, you’re too sinful, you have blown it way too many times. Too often we listen to these lies and run elsewhere to find relief from our guilt and shame. The problem is all the things we run to never give us peace and rest. There is not enough money, drugs, sex, pleasure, entertainment, relationships, political power etc. that can satisfy our heart’s deepest longings.

At this very moment Jesus calls out to us in the midst of all our brokenness, failures, weakness, and the shame of our darkest secrets and says come to My heart full of mercy and grace. It is like He is standing in front of a cozy home inviting you in out of a raging storm where you are dirty from slushing through the mud and muck. Jesus offers a warm shower, fresh cloths, and the best chicken noodle soup you ever tasted. And this greatest gift is unconditional love which He freely lavishes upon you. No judgment, no shame, just a forgiving heart that will never let you go.

How we need to encounter His heart. Why would we choose to stay outside striving to find relief in life’s storms and wallow in the mud and muck starving for true love. Listen again to His glorious invitation to you to come to His glorious loving heart.

So I took the song above and begun to sing it as if Jesus was singing it to me:

“Tim, come into My heart, come into My heart, come in today, come in and stay, Tim come into My heart, your friend the Lord Jesus!”

Listen to Jesus sing this song to you, don’t wait outside any longer, run, walk, crawl if you must, but come, come into His heart today.

What is Jesus doing right now?

I know this is going to sound funny but take a moment and lift both of your hands in the air. Maybe you’re in a coffee shop, or checking emails at work, possibly in bed or out on your patio with a cup of coffee. Did you do it, how did you feel?

The other evening I went for a walk and felt prompted to lift both of my hands in the air. Before I did it I looked around hoping not too many people were on the path before I stretched my hands upward. I did so because it was a reminder to me of what Jesus is doing right this very moment.

Jesus is working in the heavenly realm and one of His main jobs is lifting up our spiritual hands in prayer before the Father to assure victory over all our spiritual enemies.

Listen to a couple of Scriptures, which describe this most powerful work:

“Who then is left to condemn us? Certainly not Jesus, the Anointed One! For He gave His life for us, and even more than that, He has conquered death and is now risen, exalted and enthroned by God at His right hand. So how could He possibly condemn us since He is continually praying for our triumph.” Romans 8:34

“So He is able to save fully from now throughout eternity. Everyone who comes to God through Him, because He lives to pray continually for them.” Hebrews 7:25

The book of Hebrew’s reminds us that we have this Great High Priest who is moment by moment praying for our every need before the Father.

Do you every get overwhelmed by the stress and strain of life? When the news that you have cancer, or a close friend just found out about a brain tumor; sometimes life gets way too much to bear. The financial pressures, the adult child that walked away from the faith, that sin you felt you conquered beat you up again and left you spiritually dead. We have all been in positions where it seems impossible to fight on in prayer and our holy hands fall limp to our side.

This is when Jesus is at His best, as the text above says, “He is continually praying for our triumph!” There is a great story in Exodus 17 that demonstrates what Jesus is doing this very moment for us.

A fierce enemy of the children of Israel was the Amalekites. These just freed slaves who didn’t know how to fight were being attacked and were out matched in this battle. So Moses goes to the top of a mountain to pray and lift up his hands to God. As long as he prayed with hands held high Israel prevailed. But when his hands grew weary and tired the Israelites began to lose.

So Aaron, the high priest, and Hur joined Moses and lifted up his arms until sunset and Israel’s enemy was defeated (vs. 8-15).

We like Moses have encountered this battle raging all around and become weary, but take heart we have a great High Priest! Jesus takes our spiritual hands and lifts them up for us with a mighty and powerful prayer before the Father. But it is not only Jesus, but also the Holy Spirit joining in to give us strength to continue the battle…. praying on our behalf 24/7 for victory (Rom. 8:27). We cannot lose the battle as we put our trust in His powerful prayers.

So go ahead, lift up your arms, as a tangible reminder that through the interceding prayer of Christ and the Holy Spirit at this very moment He is with you. These prayers go before the Father and we know that those who are in Christ are able to triumph over the enemy.