It’s only July, but I’ve begun seeing Christmas advertisements in the stores. Hallmark is advertising their keepsake ornament soon to arrive. Hobby Lobby has Christmas décor filling the shelves. So I have been thinking a little bit about Christmas, and one of my favorite parts of Christmas is the special music we get to enjoy during the season.
One of my all-time favorite Christmas songs is “Breath of Heaven.”
“Breath of heaven, Hold me together, Be forever near me, Breath of heaven. Breath of heaven, Lighten my darkness, Pour over me your holiness, For you are holy. Breath of heaven.”
(Songwriters: Chris Eaton, Amy Grant)
There is something in the word breath that is inexplicable. Something miraculous. In Genesis 2, “The Lord God formed the man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.” From the very beginning, God’s breath is life giving. I imagine Him imparting His very life into the life of man with just a mere breath. The power is astounding.
I’m sure you can think of numerous examples of the miracle of a breath. When a baby is born, everyone waits in expectation for the baby to take his first breath. Miraculous. Imagine a dire situation when someone is lying unconscious and not breathing, and emergency workers are furiously performing rescue breathing. When the person finally takes a breath, everyone sighs in relief. Miraculous. If you’ve ever fallen or been hit in the stomach and gotten the breath knocked out of you, you were probably quite panicked until you were finally able to breathe again. It’s amazing. Miraculous. Breath is life.
Breath is air taken in and air blown out. Breath is warm because it’s been within a living body. If breath stops for too long, life ends. Breath is life.
Now follow me to another passage and just watch how this plays out.
2 Tim 3:17: “All Scripture is God-breathed . . . .”
I love the description of the Bible that Paul gives us in His second letter to Timothy. God-breathed.
So how does that translate?
Scripture has the very breath of God inside of it. Just as man was brought to life with the breath of God, so to God’s Holy Word – the Bible is brought to life with the breath of God. What does that mean? Experiment for yourself. Try to read one verse out of the Bible today. Often, when I attempt to read just one verse, I find myself reading several verses, a paragraph, or even a chapter. God engages me through His Word. The breath-of-God endowed Word of God nourishes my soul – it feeds my spirit – it enriches my life. But most of all, the Word of God connects me to my Father. It’s His breath – His life – His Word I’m absorbing. And you better believe, He is alive. He meets me there. The Holy Word of God is alive.
Furthermore, the writer of Hebrews gives us more information about that living, breath of God.
Hebrews 4:12- “The word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.”
God’s breath is not just alive; not just in existence – it is active! There is vitality to the Word of God. The living word of God penetrates the minutia of our existence. Can you imagine something so sharp that it can separate our soul and spirit? Who understands where those two differ anyway? Only the God that created them can separate them. The Word of God is sharp; it pierces our facades, our masks, our walls. God knows me, and when I read His word, His very life, His very breath, penetrates my real self. It touches my innermost feelings, my thoughts – dividing my soul and spirit.
If you want to know God and be known by Him– read His breath. Life is in the breath.
I’ll go a step further – so stop now if you don’t want to be pricked.
Why is it so easy to pick up a book of fiction or log onto Facebook – but not find five minutes to read the Bible? Shocker – most of us don’t want to know what God thinks of us. We are scared. Another shocker– we would rather escape into someone else’s reality – whether that be made up or only the good highlights of what someone wants to present as their life – than know what God wants to breathe into us that day.
It should not be. He created and formed you; He breathed His life into you; and He loves you. Let Him breathe into you today.
Enjoy life. Live life. Experience life. Life exists because of breath – and we have the very breath of God.
Breathe it. Read it.
the breathing writer