I took in a big full belly of air and let it out, ever so slowly, to ponder today’s prompted topic, “exhale”. There is a calming power in a deep breath that can’t be completely explained with words. Only in actions can you get the magnitude of what an intentional exhale can do.
So do it with me! Big deep breath in and hang onto it in your lungs for just a moment. Long enough to think to yourself, “I’m going to let all of this go”. And then release the air from your body in a profound and purposeful exhale. Ahhhhhhhh.
An intentional exhale brings peace and contentment, just by its very nature. Think of the moments when it has signified a weight being lifted for you.
For me, it’s in the deep exhale of my sweet pup when he lays down surrounded by his people. It tells me that everything is well in his world. Maybe it’s in the deep, cleansing breath following a good cry, as a cathartic conclusion to the sadness. Sometimes it comes after a long day when you finally get to sit down and put your feet up and let go of the stresses that you carried home like heavy cargo. Perhaps it is when you gently set your head on your pillow at night and slowly sigh with gratitude and accomplishment of a day well spent.
Sure, we breathe in and breathe out a million times every day. And thank goodness for that life giving breath! But the exhale… the big, full, purposeful exhale is different. It holds significance and meaning as it is released back into the world.
What if we were all more thoughtful and intentional about everything we were releasing back into the world? Not just breath, but our words, our messages, our demeanor, our attitude, our everything. What if what we took in and held inside was transformed within us, filtered through our hearts, purified through God’s grace, and then sent back into the world as a life giving force?
There is great power in our words. We can lift others up, affirm them, share our stories, and speak light and love through them. Just as we exhale air, we can exhale encouragement to those around us.
What we choose to release could be short and shallow and meaningless, like so many of the breaths we take. But it could be so much more than that. It could signify the same peace and comfort that your end-of-day, everything-will-be-alright exhale does. It could carry glory and guidance and gratitude in its release. And it could just be the very air that someone else needs to whisper worthiness back into their hurting heart.
Let it be that. Release that. Intentionally and purposely exhale that. Ahhhhhhhh.
If you would like to read what the other writers from our Five Minute Friday community are exhaling onto their pages, just click over to Lisa-Jo Baker’s blog. And if you have a story to share and words to release, join us!