When I was in middle school someone told me that it was impossible for a person to inhale 50 times without exhaling. Naturally, I spent the rest of the day trying to prove this little factoid wrong. After many, many failed attempts and some light-headed feelings, I gave up and accepted that it was not possible.
While reading today, I picked up another little nugget of info - the word inspiration means the act of breathing in! This may not be new information for you, but it set off all sorts of explosions in my head. The article I was reading talked about constantly searching for inspiration and never actually applying that inspiration to your life. It's like trying to take in 50 breaths without exhaling!
Job 33:4 “The Spirit of God has made me,
And the breath of the Almighty gives me life.
We breathe in the breath of God constantly, through His word, the people He puts us around, the experiences we have as we follow Him. How often do we exhale? How often do we share our lives, our wisdom, our experiences, with those around us? The inspiration that you draw in is meant to be let out, to be drawn in by someone else.
All of this helped me to realize that I've been selfish with my breath lately. I've been breathing in, but only letting out tiny breaths. I think it's mostly because I undervalue how my life, or anything I say really, could impact someone else. Following God has put me in some very interesting places, connected me with some really amazing people, and taught me many lessons that were not meant to be held in.
I shared a personal story during a teaching session, exhaling some of the meager wisdom I gleaned from a particularly poignant failure in my life. Weeks later someone was telling me how my story had been shared with him and what an impact it had in his life, rekindling feelings of hope as he was entering a new phase of life. It's inspirational to hear that something I shared was a help to someone else.
I was sharing all of this with Patrick today and he totally called me out on exhaling these ideas on here... I hope they inspire you to go breathe on somebody.