Gasping for air! I can still see the anxious faces of children with respiratory disease being rushed into my emergency department. Their fear-filled gazes expressed their urgent need for oxygen as they noisily labored to breathe. Often the quick application of a breathing mask, providing 100% oxygen, allowed for quieter less frenetic respirations. Oxygen – so taken for granted – when removed makes every breath a conscious labor filled activity.

As I look at my own spiritual life and the spiritual lives of those around me, anxious looks and labored “spiritual breathing” seem to be the norm. Yesterday a friend in the midst of financial crisis gave me a glimpse of a better way filled with confidence and hope. My friend was breathing the 100% spiritual oxygen of God’s presence, experienced in a prayer-filled attitude and refreshed with the precious Word of God. Trusting in God became easier as my friend breathed deeply in the Comforter. He reminded me of that old hymn,

"Breathe on me breath of God, fill me with life anew".

In emergency medicine when a crisis arises, I think of the ABC’s – checking the
Airway, Breathing and Circulation. When crisis comes to my life, I need to more quickly check my Spiritual ABC’s. Instead of filling my mind with anxious thoughts and troubled solutions, I need to check for my spiritual airway and breathe through prayer and meditation on God’s Word.

Will you help me adjust my spiritual oxygen mask this week?

The Spirit of God has made me; the breath of the Almighty gives me life. (Job 33:4)


Sharing the journey with you,

Bob Snyder