Does God Inhale?
The screaming child upstairs: gasping air into her lungs then propelling it out in heavy bellows of anger. The gusting wind beyond the pane of glass: deporting rubbish from other neighbourhoods into the bushes and drifts along my house.
The words she and I speak, long and thoughtful, in the space of Saturday indoors.
Both we and nature exhale, breathing out as a result of life and heat energizing us, stirring the systems around and within us to fulfill their purpose, however warped our misuse of the resource.
But the Maker of screaming children, billowing Chinooks, and dreaming women, He is different. He too breathes out: but He has the breath of life, making a living soul. He exhales, and ice is given. Stormy wind fulfills His word. He thunders from heaven. Sea’s channels, earth’s foundations are laid bare and exposed at the blast of the breath of His nostrils.
His quietest commands outstrip our loudest hollering, revealing His omnipotence and our frailty in one fell swoop. His exhales leave us bare and exposed.
But the source of our exhalations carves the ultimate chasm between human and divine. We breathe in because He breathes life into us. But He does not need to breathe in. He does not need inspiration. He is life. Because of Him, we exist, but He is His own first cause.
So, melt in wonder, my soul, at the thought of a God-breathed, God-spoken story given me to believe and to tell others. Marvel to consider this all-powerful, self-sustaining, all-encompassing breath of God sighing out long and labourious through the chasm between us. He speaks the Incarnation—word made flesh—revealing the brightness of His glory and the express image of His person as God-Man. Immanuel, God with us. Logos, the cause of all physical and ethical life, spoken in Christ.
To cry as an infant, Christ breathed my air. To buy me back from hellish slavery, He exchanged lives, and deaths, with me. He exhaled His last breath in triumphant purity. To fill me with His life, He overpowered death, and breathed again. To seal His possession, He breathed heaven on me, into me, by the Holy Spirit.
He breathes life into me so that I might breathe His life.
Worship breathes His breath back to Him.