Tuesday, September five, two thousand seventeen.
One o’clock in the afternoon
I am breathing.
I typically do not pay such attention to my breathing like this on a Tuesday afternoon, but this one day stands out like only a few in my life when I was fully aware of my breath. This was the day Marissa and I were hiking to the top of Mt. Elbert in Colorado (which stands at 14, 394 feet above sea level…we live at about 175 feet above sea level). It was on our way to the summit — at around 13,000 feet, with another 1,000-foot incline ahead of us — when I realized anew that my breath mattered. With my steps slowing and my oxygen level dropping, literally the only wise choice for continuing upward was to take frequent pauses…and full breaths (hmmm…sound like a Selah experience??).
It was quite simple…not a lot of other things mattered.
- Breathing in, breathing out….above the tree line, above the haze of nearby fires, the stillness, the quiet amplifying each breath;
- Breathing in, breathing out….unassisted, appreciating my body’s involuntary response to this heightened gift of life;
- Breathing in, breathing out….feeling life return to my drained body, sensing the surge of vitality too often unnoticed or disregarded in my ordinary days.
After reaching the summit (we did it!), having snacks, savoring the views, and taking necessary photos, I sat reflecting a bit.
- I remembered our Selah value: We welcome God’s love as the True Source of our being and becoming
- Love…vital, moment-to-moment Breath, present, abundant, available, free
- True Source….no substitution, endless, fathomless, the only life-giving, life-sustaining element for human living….at any altitude.
Go head. Take a deep breath. Really deep. Feel the vitality.
Welcome Life in this moment, in this place.
So be it.