Greetings From the Editor
For the winter issue of 2016, we present a collection of articles and book reviews focused upon the theme of “BREATHING.” This year we were presented with a series of challenges, but the Lord provided for us exactly what we needed to continue this important ministry. Help from the Lord came through like the precious supply of breath in ways that we could recognize right away as God’s gracious intervention.
Our authors highlight God’s mysterious and wondrous work we encounter in the Bible, the life of the church, and the world in modern days. As the Johannine Jesus points out, “The wind blows where it chooses, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes” (John 3:8). Commentators immediately add that the Greek word for the “wind” is pneuma, and that it also means “spirit” (as in the Holy Spirit). The Spirit of the living God takes us where we may not have anticipated, but the upshot of the journey is always the manifestation of God’s goodness.
We are also glad to be told once again that the wind-spirit that descends upon us from the throne of grace sustains us. The whip of the busy daily pace that consumes us leaves us with little time to dwell on the special gift of breath that God continues to breathe into the nostrils of the human beings from the beginning of creation. When we have a chance to sit for a whiff of breath, the longing for God’s presence rushes through our body and soul. When something deprives us of breath, yes, the decibel of our prayerful voice is raised. Perhaps, the Christian artist, Piety Choi, wanted to tell us precisely that through the cover art she has provided for this current issue.
I take a special delight in bringing to you this present issue, which recognizes the blessing of fellow breathing living beings around us. Somewhere I have seen a rabbinic conversation, which underscores that the world cannot exist without the breath of the innocent children. Their capacity to wonder at God’s world will always teach us to value the unstained relationship with God, and when stained, the provision of redemption and forgiveness is available.
As our authors remind us, we should take time to breathe not just mechanically, but faithfully. We are indeed thankful for our preachers who always tell us to breathe in and out. Let the Spirit of God come into our world and reclaim God’s space for peace and justice.
Jin H. Han