Breath of Life
Today’s scripture selection: Genesis 1-3
Key verse: Genesis 2:7
When was the last time you felt out of breath? If it was just recently – join the club. As a pastor one of the most frequent responses I hear when I innocently ask “So, how’s it going?” is a labored sigh followed by an almost breathless comment. “O.K., I guess.” And then the real honesty shows. “But I am just SO TIRED!” If I have shown the good sense to not interrupt, but just nod in sympathy, what follows is usually along the following lines. “I don’t know, I just run all of the time. I can hardly catch my breath!” Then I usually hear something about missed deadlines; or ball game practices; or dance recitals; or dental appointments or…you get the picture.
Maybe you can identify with this modern day malady. If so – let me make a suggestion. Right now, while you are reading these words, just take a long, slow, deep breath. If you need to, take another one. Then, as you feel the color coming back into your face and your pulse slowing, utter a short prayer of thanks. Thank God for filling your lungs, and your life, with His breath of life.
It all began a long time ago. Exactly how long ago isn’t really all that important. But our faith proclaims that at some point the Creator started something very, very good. And along with making the Sun and the Moon; that beautiful mountainside or lovely beach; all the animals in all their glorious complexity; all the plants in all their beauty – along with all that – God made US. You personally came along a lot later. But on that glorious day of holy creation – God made us all – male and female – breathed His breath into us – and said, “Now THAT is really good!”
So the next time you are stressed to the max; the next time you are gasping for air, trust that the answer is not to be found in doing more, or even necessarily doing less. It is to be found in realizing and giving thanks for God’s constant loving and empowering presence in your life. He gives you strength and hope and purpose and the peace that passes all understanding. Today – take a deep breath – and give thanks.
Prayer: Lord, thank you for creating me and breathing your Spirit into my life. Teach me to walk daily in the peace that comes from knowing you are only a breath away. AMEN.