“Breathe”

On the first Sunday of June, we will celebrate the coming of the Holy Spirit on the Day

of Pentecost (Acts 2). Characterized as the third person of the Trinity, in Scripture, the Holy

Spirit is depicted as the breath of God, the wind of God, the movement of God’s presence among

the people of God. We often view the Holy Spirit as a dove descending from heaven or

ascending to heaven.

During challenging times, Christians are encouraged to rely upon the Holy Spirit for

renewed strength, comfort, direction and guidance, and being reminded of the teachings of Jesus

Christ. Often in worship, as the Spirit hovers over the sanctuary and in and through the people of

God, we see evidences of the Holy Spirit’s presence in those who emotionally respond to fervent

prayers, stirring singing, saintly fellowshipping, powerful preaching, reading of the Scriptures,

and the witness from those who daily walk with the Lord.

When life’s challenges are overwhelming, when we deposit the earthly remains of loved

ones, and greet little ones as they arrive in our world, we trust the Holy Spirit to lead us from the

“valley of the shadow of death” and through moments of sheer joy and delight. The Holy Spirit

is available to believers. Jesus said that He would ask God to send another Comforter (John

14.16). Today, the Comforter, the Holy Spirit, continues to breathe on us.

Years ago, Edwin Hatch (1868) published a simple hymn that is a great source of

encouragement to believers.

1 Breathe on me, Breath of God, 2 Breathe on me, Breath of God,

fill me with life anew, until my heart is pure,

that I may love the way you love, until my will is one with yours,

and do what you would do. to do and to endure.

3 Breathe on me, Breath of God,

so shall I never die,

but live with you the perfect life

for all eternity.

As we begin the renovation of our sanctuary and the exterior of the church, pray asking

the Holy Spirit to breathe on us. As we celebrate the time of sabbatical and renewal for pastor

and people, ask the Comforter, the Holy Spirit to breathe on us. As we face health crises and

trust the wisdom of medical professionals, ask the Holy Spirit to breathe on us. As we spend

loving time with our families and friends during the summer months, ask the Holy Spirit to

breathe on us. As we celebrate the gift of the Holy Spirit, God’s Holy Comforter, we are grateful

that the Holy Spirit is breathing on us. Amen.