Katie M. Reid is a tightly wound woman who fumbles to receive and extend grace in everyday moments. She delights in her husband, four children and their life in ministry. Through writing, singing, speaking and photography Katie encourages others to find grace in the unraveling of life. She has an album, Echoes of My Heart, and is a writer for God-sized Dreams and Purposeful Faith. She blogs at katiemreid.com and can be found on Twitter @Katie_M_Reid
I am a list-maker.
To-do lists provide organization and clarity for my racing thoughts and busy schedule.
About twelve years ago I took a Precept Bible study class and learned to use a powerful tool that blended my affinity for lists with my love for God.
As you read the Bible keep a running list of what you learn about God.
It is a simple yet sacred practice. Let’s give it a try.
Find God in the Bible in 3 Easy Steps:
Step 1: Pray and ask God to give you insight as you read.
Step 2: Read the passage
Step 3: List what you learn about God
Let’s try it with these verses from Psalm 145:
I will exalt you, my God the King;
I will praise your name for ever and ever.
2 Every day I will praise you
and extol your name for ever and ever.
3 Great is the Lord and most worthy of praise;
his greatness no one can fathom.
4 One generation commends your works to another;
they tell of your mighty acts.
5 They speak of the glorious splendor of your majesty—
and I will meditate on your wonderful works.
6 They tell of the power of your awesome works—
and I will proclaim your great deeds.
7 They celebrate your abundant goodness
and joyfully sing of your righteousness.”
Now my list might look like this:
Finding God in Psalm 145:1-7
Look at all we learned about God from doing this easy exercise!
I like to include the verses after each statement for quick reference. Also note on line 3, “God is worthy of praise”, I included two verses because they said something similar.
I'd love to hear what you thought of this study tool!
If you want to take things to the next level checkout the extended version of this post on One Thing Alone...
“Then the LORD God formed a man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.” -Genesis 2:7
Sometimes I forget to take a breath. It hits me all of [a] sudden that I haven’t taken a deep breath for hours, that my shoulders are tucked up beneath my ears, as if they are supporting them, and I’m breathing but in short, rapid, shallow, hurried breaths. Slow down, I say to myself. Breathe. -Kris Camealy
The delivery nurse told me to pant. I was in excruciating pain but I didn’t want to damage my body by pushing prematurely. I didn’t know if I was in danger or if the doctor was just delayed in her arrival.
So I tried to obey, kind of. I found out later that the nurses’s command to pant was because the doctor was not there yet to catch my son. If I had known this I would not have panted, I would have pushed.
Pushing is my preference.
I push down doors of opportunity. I push myself and others to do more and be more. I push to get my way. But I’m often left feeling shoved around and out of breath when life doesn’t go as expected.
Take a deep cleansing breath. That’s what my choral director from college said when we warmed up to sing.
Inhale, up. Exhale, down. That’s what Shaun T. says on our crazy workout videos.
Breathe in for 3 and out for 10. That’s what our birthing class instructor said as we prepared for childbirth.
But I breathe shallow most of the time. I let the cares of life and the pace of ambition dictate my respiratory patterns. I need to slow down, inhale deep, and let God be on the throne of Heaven and my heart.
I scurry and hurry and drop and plop and need to come up for air.
The breath of God is in my nostrils, yet I often take it for granted.
As a tightly-wound woman who lives quite frantically, most of the time, I battle fear, insecurities, people-pleasing, and control and I want to be made well.
I don’t want my shallow breathing to lead to shallow living, so I pause and ponder what it is that God is speaking to this try-hard heart.
When faced with the unexpected twists and turn of life, we often pant or push. But what if we learned to breathe deeply and rest in the care of our Creator, regardless of our circumstances?
What if we trusted instead of throwing tantrums?
What if we found grace in the unraveling of life?
What if we allowed our tightly-wound tendencies to wrap us around the One who holds us, and all things, together?
Let's say "good-bye" to shallow living once and for all.
*This post was originally published on purposefulfaith.com
I don’t breathe deeply enough. I often race through life, taking shallow breaths.
When I am stressed, or in labor, I finally take deep cleansing breaths as I try to cope.
Labor with my Sunshine-headed son was intense back-labor from the start. Tears filled my eyes from the steady pain, with no relief in sight. I tried to stay calm but hours and hours without eating and an extremely tense back didn’t lend itself well to this endeavor.
Finally the time came to push but the nurse told me I needed to pant instead.
What’s that you say? Not push? I’m pretty sure that’s not happening.
Often I push my way through life—prematurely trying to make things happen according to what I think is best.
His ways are so different and higher than ours. He is the Giver of breath, of life, and He is there when we breathe shallow, hold our breath or feel like we can’t take our next one.
I want to breathe deeply and not because I’m trying to cope or labor. I want to let God’s love, creativity and care fill my lungs with grace. I want to exhale praise and gratefulness for all He is and all He does.
Let’s reserve our panting and pushing for the delivery room.
Let’s thank God for the very breath we have, right now.
Let’s slow and demonstrate trust as He sustains us.
*This post was originally published at katiemreid.com