This morning I read a Psalm, a poem penned (etched, more likely) by the Great King David on a morning before heading into battle. He spoke of waking the dawn with music lifted to God and ended by asking God to go with his men into battle for the day. In ancient belief, the only way to win a battle is to have your God win the victory. David was no different – he wanted to live to see the sunset and he was asking God for that privilege.
Today two of my friends will say final goodbyes to a dear friend. Just this week marked one year since another dear friend lost her mother. People in my circle are mourning – parents, close relatives, good friends. Some of those leaving this world are healthy, others not. Some have enjoyed a life filled with days, others, it seems, got half of what was due. It doesn’t matter the circumstances, the pain of loss is often a cut from the same knife.
To King David, marching off to battle or to myself, sitting in my cozy leather chair in the living room, we are all asking for the next breath. David had an advantage as swords and spears tend to bring our attention to the value of the next breath, but it doesn’t change the currency.
I’m too much of a pacifist to enjoy a war analogy; instead I decide to begin my day much the same way. God, the giver of breath and life, be present in my day and continue to grant my lungs that precious inhale and exhale. May my chest rise and fall repeatedly today, to the joy and benefit of myself and my loved ones. Grant that same breath to those I hold close and may we each feel your presence in it.