Every time I fly, the flight attendants take some time to review the safety features. At this point in my storied travel experiences, it is pretty much background noise. But as we’ve been preparing for our trip, this moment popped into my head and I realized that one part has always bothered me. It’s this idea of putting on my own oxygen mask before assisting others traveling in my party.

You remember…when the flight attendant demonstrates the oxygen mask gently cascading down from the ceiling above, gives it a firm tug and pretends to place it over their mouth all while smiling. Yeah right…I’d prefer a real-life depiction, but the screaming would probably freak people out.

At the very end, they instruct you to be sure if you’re traveling with someone who needs assistance (I always assume that’s me) to secure your mask first, then the other persons.

I know we can all be selfish, and no doubt I’m a pro. But, imagine sitting next to your child who is struggling to breathe while you are don your mask and “tighten the side straps by pulling like so.” It’s right, but feels so wrong.

It’s right, because if you pass out while you’re attempting to get your child’s mask on you’re both going to expire! But still…

Here’s the connection. We have to put on our own oxygen mask if we are to help and serve others. The truth is, we have to put it on first! That means that our relationship with Jesus is the critical oxygen-life giving means by which we can even help others find the life that comes from Jesus. We have to breathe in Jesus in our own personal lives if we are going to serve and minister to others.

The best gift you can give, is your own personal journey with Jesus.

So…take a deep breath; A deep breath in your connection to Christ. Each moment of each day pursue a deep walk with Jesus. Breathing Jesus in and out as you go. Don’t stand at a distance. Be overwhelmed and overcome by the love of Jesus for you. I know each of us do this a little differently. But all of us need truths from God’s Word to soak deep in our hearts in inner silence as we go through our daily lives. I pray this will be true for you.

Strip away the assumptions of how you relate to Jesus. Seek a day-to-day connection with God that is new and fresh and unlike any other day…because it is today! Continue to breathe. I pray you will discover anew what it is to be loved and to deeply love, what it looks like to fail and succeed and how to live in the extraordinary ordinary of each day…as you breathe in Jesus.

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