The Spirit of God has made me, And the breath of the Almighty gives me life.
Job 33:4 NASB
I’m beginning to think that surrendering is going to be a lifelong journey! As I have written in the past, I’ve been trying to understand how to DO less. I’ve felt frustrated about the fact that I’m not “actively” walking out my Christian faith, because I know that faith without works is dead. So how does that fit into surrender and allowing myself to just be, letting my body be an expression of Christ in me. Just this week, I sat on the couch, and in exasperation said, “It doesn’t seem like enough to just BE!” This is a legitimate concern but I have a secret vow that is complicating things for me. I was raised by a father who gave little emotional effort to our family. His focus was on being a financial provider for us. His lack of purposeful investment in life left him an emotional shell. As I watched my dad, I made an unspoken vow to live my life as a man with purpose. My fear is that if I stop doing, I will lose my purpose.
Not having a purpose is truly terrifying for me. The Lord confronted my fears with this quote from Rabbi Lawrence Kushner about God’s name, Yahweh.
In order to make the word pronounceable, we have added the “a” and “e” but the actual Hebraic name of God is: YHWH. From Rabbi Kushner: “…in truth [these four letters] are unutterable. Not because of the holiness they evoke, but because they are all vowels and you cannot pronounce all the vowels at once without risking respiratory injury. The word is the sound of breathing. The…Name of the Creator is the sound of your own breathing.”
Okay, that’s worth reading again.
God comforted me by revealing that the simple inhale and exhale of my breath is calling His name. I am not ever in a state of just “being.” I am continually in a state of calling on Him, praising Him. His name is forever on my lips and I am truly praying without ceasing. Why, because I am simply being. Through the renewing of my mind, I am becoming aware of what I am calling out, and every moment of life becomes my communion with Him.
Ultimately, He is asking me to surrender every purpose, and reducing me to the act of breathing. Maybe then, He will start to speak regarding His purpose for this living sacrifice—my body, my life. I have to be willing to be reduced to nothing (just to a breath). I have to be willing to return to dust, totally dead, for Him to be able to breathe into me the breath of life. Then the “works” that James talks about will flow, but not from me trying to walk out my purpose, rather from His purpose flowing through me. Maybe my purpose will be to just breathe. The story isn’t over…
Let everything that has breath praise the LORD