When I was young, I fell off of some contraption I was playing on and lost my ability to breathe. “I got the wind knocked out of me,” as they say. It probably only lasted for a few seconds but I remember it was a scary few seconds.
Getting told you have cancer is sort of like that, only scarier. And it lasts longer.
Our lives are filled with moments like this that seem to come out of nowhere and take us by surprise.
Like the day I learned my sister-in law had lymphoma.
And when I heard of our nephew and niece’s newborn who is currently in the hospital battling a heart condition.
Or when I found out last week that one of our good friends had been diagnosed with leukemia.
In these seconds that feel like hours, everything slows. The heart sinks and the air leaves our lungs as we struggle to make sense of it all.
Then, there are other moments. The ones that remind us of our loving Creator. Soul-transcending times when we are startled by grace. Caught off guard by something so wonderful that we have no choice but to pause and give thanks to the One who made us.
Like the day the Lord mercifully reached down, rescuing my heart and saving me.
And the moment me and my love shared our “I do’s”, becoming husband and wife.
Or all the times during my recent struggles that I’ve encountered the compassion of family, friends and even strangers and realized how truly blessed I am.
I’m reminded of that quote that says, Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away.
Those breath-stealing moments, they can happen in good times or bad. Either way, they get our attention, opening our eyes to what’s truly important, making us aware that we are alive.
And we are alive because God breathed His very breath into us. So it’s fitting that we should pour out our praise to Him.
That’s what I’m doing now. Thanking God for life and breath and everything else He’s so graciously given. Want to join me?
Let everything that has breath praise the Lord. Psalm 150:6