A wind of breath.

We’re about 45 days from Pentecost Sunday. That’s the day that the church celebrates the consistent, persistent, whispering, rushing arrival of the Holy Spirit. But when Nancy gave me the word “wind” for today’s post, I was happy to jump ahead of the liturgical calendar.

Recently, I’ve talked with God about wind on behalf of people struggling with breath. “In the same way you are the breath of God,” I say, “bring air to these lungs.”

tapIt’s not a bad prayer, actually. The image of the creation of human life is God breathing his breath into hand-formed figures. On the night of the resurrection, Jesus met with the disciples and breathed on them. “Receive the Holy Spirit,” he said, to everyone but Judas and Thomas. On the day of Pentecost, the disciples gathered in the upper room heard a sound like a rushing wind as the Holy Spirit arrived.

So when I’m asking for real breath for people, air moving in and out, giving life, relaxing the terror of not breathing, I’m making a request that is true physiologically and theologically.

(As a side note, as I’ve watched people taking their last breaths, I’ve talked with God about the Spirit living out the name “comforter”, for people who need comfort. And filling them with the peace that is beyond understanding.)

I think that wind came to mind for Nancy because we had strong wind today, drying wet ground, flipping open trash cans, keeping me from running. Wind is odd, full of impact, but lacking presence. Ah but the value of that impact when we need air in crisis moments.

So spend some time today breathing in and out. It’s a holy process,

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