DayBreaks for 10/12/20 – The Man Without Breath

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From the DayBreaks archive, October 2010:

The Hawaiians have a name for those of us from the mainland who are of Caucasian descent.  They call us haoles (pronounced “how-lees”).  I never knew the meaning of that name until two weeks ago. 

In 1778, Captain Cook became the first European to visit the Hawaiian islands, then known as the Sandwich Islands.  The Hawaiians had never seen a Caucasian before, and were stunned at his pallor.  They called him a haole, which means a person “without breath.”  In other words, because he was so pale, they thought he was dead – a walking ghost perhaps, or possibly a god. 

As I heard this story, I couldn’t help but recall the Biblical account of creation: how man came to live only when God breathed into him the “breath of life.”  Our life originally found its origin in the very breath of God.  “And man became a living soul.”  It didn’t take us very long, however, before we found a way to “kill” ourselves – through our rebellion and sin.  And, once again, we were dead – spiritually, we were haoles, without life.  God wasn’t content to leave things that way however, and in writing to the Colossians, Paul said: And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses, by canceling the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands. This he set aside, nailing it to the cross. –  Colossians 2:13-14

After Jesus’ death and resurrection, we find an interesting note in the text: As he spoke, he showed them the wounds in his hands and his side. They were filled with joy when they saw the Lord! Again he said, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I am sending you.” Then he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit. – John 20:20-22  How did Jesus give us life again?  By breathing into them (and us!) His Holy Spirit!

We are not people without breath.  We are a people who have been given the very breath of God.  Let’s not look and act like we’re dead to anything – except to sin! 

PRAYER: For physical life, we give You our thanks.  For reviving our dead souls through Your sacrifice and Spirit, we rejoice!  May we look and act as those who have been revived and raised from the deadness of our sin!  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

PRAYER: Thank you, Lord, for this reminder of how precious and special people are to you. Help my heart learn more of the rhythm of yours! In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright 2020 by Galen C. Dalrymple. ><}}}”>

DayBreaks for 6/4/20 – The Breath of God

How the Breath Moves the Body in Meditation Practice

DayBreaks for 6/04/20: The Breath of God

In the Genesis creation account, God breathes into the body of Adam the “breath of life”. Many times throughout Scripture it speaks of man’s breath in a way that symbolizes his life.

The Spirit of God comes from the Greek word pneuma which can be translated as wind or breath.

Regardless of whether it is used in conjunction with human life, or with the Spirit of God, it is the animating life force which gives and sustains life. Without breath, we’d be dead in mere minutes.

All that makes it even more tragic that when that breath is cut off, we quickly expire.

George Floyd was not a perfect human being. There’s only been one of those and he was also the perfect Almighty God -perfect man and perfect God. George Floyd was not the Son of God, but by virtue of his being part of God’s creation and made in the image of God, plus his professed Christianity, we was a son of God. I make no judgment about that – nor should you.

But this man was reported to have said multiple times, “I can’t breathe!” He was deprived of the breath of life by one who didn’t recognize or honor the fact that he was made in the very image of God and breathed the air God created. It was flat out wrong – and evil!

We should all be praying that we would have more of the Breath of God in us, the one who said he is the Life, and not like the one who snuffed the breath out of George Floyd. And we must be very, very careful that we don’t snuff the breath of life from others through our attitudes and actions – or lack thereof.

PRAYER: Fill us with your breath and let us help bring the Breath of God to all we encounter. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright by 2020 by Galen C. Dalrymple.  ><}}}”>

DayBreaks for 5/11/16 – Spirit Signs

DayBreaks for 5/11/16 – Spirit Signs

As the story goes, a little girl was visiting her grandmother one beautiful spring morning. They walked out into her grandmother’s flower garden. As grandmother was inspecting the progress of her flowers the little girl decided to try to open a rosebud with her own two hands. But no luck! As she would pull the petals open, they would tear or bruise or wilt or break off completely. Finally, in frustration, she said, “Gramma, I just don’t understand it at all. When God opens a flower, it looks so beautiful but when I try, it just comes apart.” “Well, honey,” Grandmother answered, “There’s a good reason for that. God is able to do it because He works from the inside out!”

God works from the inside out. That is the great message of Pentecost Sunday, isn’t it? This is what the disciples finally came to understand at Pentecost. Jesus had ascended into heaven. And He had told the disciples to wait in Jerusalem for the Holy Spirit.

Here is where the story of Pentecost picks up. The disciples are back in the Upper Room waiting and wondering and some of them likely were grumbling impatiently and nervously. “What in the world are we doing here? All this waiting around is driving me up the wall! There’s no use. He’s gone and without Him, we are nothing. It’s over! We’d just as well face it. What is this Holy Spirit business anyway? Maybe we misunderstood Him!”

Maybe just then they heard a sound. The breath of God began to blow on that place like the rush of a mighty wind. Images of fire danced around them. Suddenly, their fear was gone, replaced by peace and confidence, courage and strength and unity and they began to speak and communicate the word of God boldly and amazingly people from all different backgrounds heard and responded and 3,000 people were converted that day.

It’s interesting to note that the three classic symbols for the Holy Spirit in the Bible remind us of how God works through us and how God works from the inside out. Do you remember what they are? The three traditional symbols of the Holy Spirit in the Bible: Breath: the symbol of Life. Fire: the symbol of Power. The descending dove: the symbol of Peace.

Are those three things visible in your life? Do people around you see the Spirit at work within you?

PRAYER: Jesus, may be know the Breath of Life, the Fire of the Spirit, and the Peace that comes from You. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright 2016, Galen C. Dalrymple. All rights reserved.

 

 

DayBreaks for 11/09/12 – Dry Bones Hear the Word

From the DayBreaks Archive:  DayBreaks for 11/18/02:

Ezekiel 37:1-6 – “1 The hand of the LORD was upon me, and he brought me out by the Spirit of the LORD and set me in the middle of a valley; it was full of bones. 2 He led me back and forth among them, and I saw a great many bones on the floor of the valley, bones that were very dry. 3 He asked me, “Son of man, can these bones live?” I said, “O Sovereign LORD, you alone know.” 4 Then he said to me, “Prophesy to these bones and say to them, ‘Dry bones, hear the word of the LORD! 5 This is what the Sovereign LORD says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life. 6 I will attach tendons to you and make flesh come upon you and cover you with skin; I will put breath in you, and you will come to life. Then you will know that I am the LORD.’

This is one of my favorite Bible stories.  It has fascinated me since I can first remember.  I can’t imagine the vision that Ezekiel saw, and the power of the moment when the bones began to rattle and move by the power of the Word of God.

Picture it in your own mind, put yourself into Ezekiel’s place.  Can you see the dryness of the bones, the arid emptiness of the valley, blasted by the heat, bleached by the sun…and entire valley full of bones of dead men?  What is God’s message to the bones that were so “very dry”, so very dead?  “Dry bones, hear the Word of the Lord!”  What would the result be of the bones hearing the Word of the Lord?  Breath would enter into them, and they will come to life!

There are so many lessons that could be drawn from this passage, but the one for today is simply this: dry bones can hear the Word and be brought back to life.  Many times our lives, our souls, can become much like those dry bones.  We are laid low by life, for all intents and purposes, the bones of our existence lay on the valley floor, scorched, bleached and seemingly very dead.  Life crushes, discourages and burdens us.   Like the bones of long ago in the valley of Ezekiel, our dry bones need to “hear the word of the Lord”…and when we do, just like the dry bones from so long ago, we will “come to life”!  All it takes for dry bones to live is to hear the Word of the Lord!  Oh, and don’t miss it: just in case we didn’t catch it the first time, God repeats it a second time: “I will put breath in you, and you will come to life”.  What’s the point of it?  THEN we will know that He is the Lord, THEN He will be exalted, glorified, THEN we will be moved to live like men and women who know and understand His power to transform dry, dull, dead lives into something that can shout His praises and do war with His enemies.

What was the secret for the dry bones in the days of Ezekiel?  No magic potion, no special incantations, no great works to perform – just “hear the Word of the Lord”.  It is the same today.  Are you dry and dead?  Listen to the prophet of God from so long ago: “Dry bones, hear the Word of the Lord!”  That’s all it takes to give you life again! 

PRAYER: Lord, how desperately we need new life, for the Holy Breath of God to enter into our souls and make our bones rattle and move!  Blow on us, Spirit, and revive our lives again!  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright 2012 by Galen C. Dalrymple.

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