The other day I saw a picture on the wall at the doctor’s office that reminds us that “life is not measured by the breaths that you take, but by the moments that take your breath away.”

When I stopped for a minute to think about the moments in my life that have taken my breath away, the thoughts just started tumbling around in my mind, because there have been so many.

Undoubtedly one of the most breathtaking moments was the day Rex and I were married. When I started down the aisle and saw him waiting for me at the altar, there were no words to describe what I felt in those moments. I knew I was about the begin the adventure of a lifetime, and I have not been disappointed.

Nine times in my life I was blessed with a breathtaking moment, when I was able to hold my niece or nephew for the first time. To see that tiny face, feel those tiny fingers clasped around my finger brought a feeling that I was truly seeing one of God’s greatest miracles and blessings. I can only imagine what a mother or father must feel the first time they hold their own child. That experience must be beyond breathtaking.

Another breathtaking moment was the first time we were able to attend a show at the Sight & Sound Theatre in Lancaster. More than once I found myself holding my breath or sitting on the edge of my seat, waiting to see what was going to happen next, and how it was going to be staged. The fact that the show was one of my favorite passages from the Bible, the story of Ruth and Boaz, only added to the excitement, because I knew how the story had to end. But even knowing what the ending would be, I was not prepared for the angel who seemed to float in mid-air or the “blood” that came from the cross and reached throughout the audience.

The past few days we have had a breathtaking experience at home, though most might not see it that way. We planted what we thought were going to be pink dahlias in the center of one of our flower beds. It was mid-June before we got them planted, and it seemed like it was taking forever for them to bloom. The smaller dahlias we had planted around the edge of the flower bed had beautiful blossoms much sooner. But our pink dahlias, while covered with buds, only grew taller and are now about three feet tall. They finally started to bloom, and the flowers are magnificent. They are not the light pink I was expecting, but a beautiful lavender color. The one blossom is at least six inches wide, if not wider. At last count there were six of those beautiful flowers, and everyone who has seen them has been amazed at their size, beauty and perfection. God truly blessed that planting effort!

Some cynics might say “I never had any breath-taking moments,” and those folks surely have missed out on a lot of blessings.

Breathtaking doesn’t have to be something that makes national headlines; it only has to be something that gives us whatever we might be needing at that moment to know that our lives have been blessed, giving us the strength and desire to face yet another day, where there may be another mountain to climb or a valley to cross. I have been blessed with many moments that took my breath away, and I look forward to those that are still coming.

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Thought for the week — Never lose an opportunity of seeing anything beautiful, for beauty is God’s handwriting. (Ralph Waldo Emerson)

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