Letter to SUFTT: “What’s so bad about Breath Prayers?”

We received a great letter from Alex over the weekend:

I was wondering about Breath Prayers. It seems to me like a good thing to do. Why do I get the impression that it isn’t something you guys advocate? I read in link from Rick Warren’s info page that it is similar in a sense to praying the rosary but my objections to that is it isn’t praying directly to Jesus but Mary as a mediator and I also don’t think it is good to empty your mind and do all that eastern religious stuff, but I don’t see a problem with breath prayers, in fact I attended services at an AG camp that in one of them talked a little bit about the benefits of it. What are your thoughts or objections if any? I love your show, thanks for blessing us with your insight and for standing up for God’s Word!

Great question! I sent Alex some resources on Breath Prayer and Contemplative Prayer, which are practices advocated by many Christians into the New Age and Emergent movements within the Church. The list is probably overkill, but if you want to study more I am sharing it here:

Alex wrote back and shared this:

Thank you and Amy so much for the links and info. The Breath Prayers that I learned about were much more different than these mystical prayers. It was more of a prayer around 12 syllables long that you repeat during the day under your breath when you need it, like if someone is rude to you, you just pray something like “O Lord, help me to forgive.” or when things go wrong you pray something like “God, give me joy.” That was my understanding, the breathing prayers you informed me of do seem to be more based on eastern religions. Thanks, and God bless you all!

It got me to thinking about the many words like Contemplative have been hijacked and twisted to mean something other than what we understood originally. A word that used to be biblical is now cause for a red flag. What a shame. But that is how the enemy works, doesn’t he?
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3 Responses to Letter to SUFTT: “What’s so bad about Breath Prayers?”

  1. Deb says:

    I like the way Alex restated how he interpreted Breath Prayers. When I'm reading the Bible and a verse jumps off the page at me I usually write it down on a 3×5 card and carry it with me. I usually carry anywhere from 5-20 cards with me of verses that have special meaning and when I feel I'm being attacked or if I have down time I review these verses. So I am meditating on his Word day and night. Joshua 1:8. That is how I would view Alex's understanding. That is also one of the reasons why I love Christian music so much. Sometimes I get a song stuck in my head, but I also feel like I am in constant prayer when I meditate on some of the lyrics throughout my day.


  2. Kevin Kleint says:

    Man, when I first skimmed the headline, I thought it was addressing "Bad breath prayers"! Hahaha ….

    Anyhow, here's my two cents.

    I find nothing wrong with saying prayers repeatedly, as long as there is an awareness of exactly WHAT you are praying. If I'm not mistaken, Jesus spoke against repeated prayers because the pray-ers were doing it to be heard and seen by men.

    Additionally, it's when prayers become meaningless "chants" that they become dangerous. Nowadays, people are so frantic to get a hyperspiritual "experience", they will swallow deception willingly to achieve their ends. And the enemy is all-too-eager to give them exactly what they ask for … at a price.

    It's unfortunate that certain terms are hijacked by the pseudo-christian New Age looneys, but I guess it's something we got to deal with, for now. Meanwhile, we would do well to cling to the Word and obey God … separating ourselves from the chaff … which includes these new trendy "techniques" for getting in touch with the supernatural.



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