Life Is But a Breath

Psalm 39:5: “You have made my days a mere handbreadth; the span of my years is as nothing before you. Each man’s life is but a breath.”

Last week several of us women talked about how the years seem to pass by faster as we get older. As children, life seemed to be at a standstill. Now life seems to rush on by.

Scripture says God has made our “days a mere handbreadth.” A handbreadth is a linear measurement about the width of the palm of the hand and ranges from 2 ½ to 4 inches. No wonder the word, “mere” is used. With such a small range, what will we do on earth? How will we live with meaning and joy?

What dreams and goals do you have? What is your plan to reach them?

My son often said, “When I retire, I’ll . . . “ or “When I don’t work anymore, I’ll . . . “ Those days never came for him, and not one of us is promised a long life on earth.

As Psalm 39:5 says, “Each man’s life is but a breath.” If you hope to spend more time with your children, do it now. If you’re going to enjoy the companionship of your spouse, don’t wait for tomorrow. If you want to read a book a week, start reading today. If you live in danger, provide for your safety now before it is too late.

If you belong to the procrastinator’s club, remember you don’t have to renew your membership. Your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit. Don’t wait for retirement to take care of it.

Sit with your Bible in a quiet spot and listen to what God would have you do. Take notes in your journal and pray over each of your activities, your email subscriptions, your magazine subscriptions, and your commitments.

Dear God, help me understand my life is but a breath. Amen.

Application:  What will you do this week to make your life more meaningful?

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Copyright 2010-2013, Yvonne Ortega, LPC, LSATP, CCDVC

All Rights Reserved. Used by Permission.
Yvonne is a Speaker, Author, Counselor, Cancer Survivor and
serves on the Board of Directors of Christians in Recovery.
She is the author of Finding Hope for Your Journey through Breast Cancer.
If you would like to have her speak for your organization or church, please contact her through
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