“And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being.” (Genesis 2:7 NKJV)
“And with that he breathed on them and said, ‘Receive the Holy Spirit.'” (John 20:22 NIV)
Life — it’s impossible without breath. “Breathe!” “Blast!” These commands came from a technician coaching me for a pulmonary function test as I sat inside an air-tight, sealed cylinder watching him through the glass. I felt like he was a symphony conductor using his hands and body movement to convey what I was to do as the player of my lungs. My only source of air was via a mouthpiece from an oxygen tank, and my nose was clamped shut. The technician guided my intake of air by counting fifteen seconds. Then, I was to hold that supply of air for a short bit, and at his loud command of “Blast!” I was to exhaust all air possible, suddenly and completely in one strong, continuous exhale. A monitor showed the technician the measurements of my intake, and the “blast” helped to determine my pulmonary function.
This experience gave me a new appreciation for the marvellous bodily mechanism created to keep us alive. Everything within us depends on our ability to breathe. We are usually not even aware of this automatic, rhythmic activity until we sense an interruption in what is normal. I could not help but think about how God gave me life and breath at my birth, and then through His Holy Spirit, gave me new life when I put my trust in Jesus Christ.
The pulmonary function test was needed to check on an exhale symptom in my breathing that I had noticed. As believers, we can tell when there is an interruption in our normal spiritual breathing — our relationship with the Lord. It might be time to get a spiritual pulmonary function test to measure our daily intake and outflow. A spiritual intake or inhaling of regular reading and meditating on the Word of God refreshes us with life-giving truth. An exhale of confessing and repenting of sin is necessary to clear our spiritual airways.
There is a worship song that repeats these words:
“This is the air I breathe,
Your holy presence living in me.
This is my daily bread,
Your very word spoken to me.
And I’m desperate for You,
And I’m lost without You.”
– Joseph Oscar Mettle
There is another praise song about breathing:
“It’s Your breath in our lungs,
So we pour out our praise to You only.”
– Jason Ingram, David Leonard, Leslie Jordan
That pouring-out blast of uninterrupted praise is a response to the infilling of His Spirit.
How is your breathing health today? Are you breathing in deeply the refreshing Spirit of God through His Word and exhaling with confession and praises to your Creator? It is what keeps us alive in Him.
Prayer: “Breathe on me, Breath of God, Fill me with life anew, That I may love what Thou dost love, And do what Thou wouldst do. Amen” – Edwin Hatch
Copyright © 2022, by Sharon Lundquist <firstname.lastname@example.org>, first published on the PresbyCan Daily Devotional presbycan.ca .
Beaverton, Oregon, USA
Reprinted from PresbyCan with author’s permission