God Still Speaks: July 3rd

"The Holy Spirit is more powerful than the wind of a thousand hurricanes..."

Scripture reference: Genesis 2:7″Then the Lord God formed the man from the dust of the ground. He breathed the breath of life into the man’s nostrils, and the man became a living person.”

When my children were little, I loved to cuddle with them at bedtime as they fell asleep. After a day of playing with dolls and trains and Legos, family dinner, taking a bath, and curling up in bed for a story, everything would become peaceful and still in the cozy night-light safety of a child’s bedroom. As they (hopefully quickly!) drifted off to sleep, the only noise left was the gentle breathing of a small child, who was busy dreaming of tomorrow’s adventures. I could not only hear but also see their breathing, as I watched the rhythmic and peaceful movement caused by tiny lungs filling with oxygen, again and again.

In the Hebrew language, unlike in English, the root words for “wind” and “breath” are interchangeable, so the wind of God, which is one of the Bible’s favorite symbols for the Holy Spirit, is also the breath of God. I love this way of understanding the Holy Spirit; He is God breathing upon and through and even into Creation. This, of course, takes us all the way back to the beginning of the story of humanity, when God breathes life into the first person who ever lived. Now imagine that the story of Adam is actually your story and my story, too. The same God who spoke life into existence in the Garden has breathed His breath of life into each of my children, and He continues to breathe life into you and me. Our relationship with the Holy Spirit, then, is as intimate as our own bodies and as immediate as the next breath in our lungs. The Holy Spirit is more powerful than the wind of a thousand hurricanes, and His breath of life is as gentle and renewing as a child tucked safely in bed for the night.

One of my favorite hymns expresses it this way:

Breathe on me, Breath of God,
fill me with life anew,
that I may love the way you love,
and do what you would do.

Breathe on me, Breath of God,
until my heart is pure,
until my will is one with yours,
to do and to endure.

 Breathe on me, Breath of God,
so shall I never die,
but live with you the perfect life
for all eternity.

(Watch an incredibly moving live performance of this song by a massive choir.)

Question: What are the sources of stress or tension inside of you right now? Name them out loud (or write them down in a journal). Next, concentrate on nothing but your breathing for sixty seconds (at least), and with every breath you take, imagine the Holy Spirit breathing into you the breath of life.

Prayer: Choose your favorite of the three stanzas from the hymn above, and make it your personal prayer today. 

Kevin Griffin

Kevin Griffin

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