In the stress of the Christmas season we can lose our sense of Christ Jesus and his joy. We’d like to share with you a simple Breath Prayer from the Bible for Advent called “King Jesus, My Joy.”
We constantly hear from people who appreciate our short, Scripture-inspired prayers of the heart. (See our resources Breath Prayer Guides and Your Best Life in Jesus’ Easy Yoke.) They help us overcome our many challenges to prayer like distractions, restlessness, and difficulty engaging our mind and heart with God.
Repeatedly breathing in and out a phrase of Scripture is an ancient Christian practice that can help us to pray with focus, depth, and persistence. It is a simple way of using our bodies in our discipleship to Jesus, much like kneeling in prayer or raising our hands in worship. Training with a Breath Prayer fosters intimacy with the Lord, practicing God’s presence, emotional health, and fruitful intercession for yourself and others.
Let’s take a moment to enjoy our Savior.
“When [the Magi] saw the star, they were overjoyed. On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh” (Matthew 2:10-11, NIV).
The Magi had been studying the stars for years and discovered a special star which they discerned to announce the birth of a new king in Israel. They travelled as far as one thousand miles to bring their special gifts to the Christ child. Their gifts were prophetic of Jesus’ offices: gold for the King, frankincense for the Priest, and myrrh for the Savior.
The gifts of the Magi were expensive, but their greatest value was the heart behind them. The Magi pursued Christ for so long and rejoiced to find him. They bowed before him in adoring worship. The best gift we can offer to Jesus is to gladly give our heart to love and serve him.
King Jesus… My joy… I give you my heart…
Here’s a way you can use your rhythm of breathing to help you pray:
- Wait to breathe and use your longing for oxygen to feel your longing for King Jesus…
- Breathe in slowly and deeply to help you receive the joy of Jesus…
- Breathe out slowly and completely to help you give your heart to Jesus…
- Wait to breathe as you whisper, “King Jesus…”
- Breathe in as you whisper, “My joy…”
- Breathe out as you whisper, “I give you my heart…”
- Let distractions slip away by re-focusing on breathing your prayer over and over…
What feelings or needs arose? What was your experience of God? I encourage you to share and pray in your journal or with a friend. (You can pray this for a loved one too.)
Excerpted from Breath Prayer Guides by Bill Gaultiere.
More Breath Prayers
To pray a short verse or paraphrase of Scripture as a Breath Prayer is refreshing and empowering. It helps you learn to practice God’s presence all day and stay in tune with the peace of Christ. I’ve selected key verses of Scripture and developed step-by-step instructions for meditation, breathing rhythms, and prayer in “Breath Prayer Guides.”
Listen to this week’s SoulTalk: In this episode, Bill and Kristi unpack another breath prayer for this Advent season. Learn how to train your body to increase your reliance on the Lord. Wholly experience King Jesus as your joy even in the midst of struggle and stress!