The gift of living is breathtakingly miraculous and creation feels like one great vibration of love, says CHANA MEDDIN 

Walking down the wide hall to my doctor’s office last week, I began feeling anxious. A second round of mammograms indicated a cancer biopsy was necessary. My doctor had reassured me after the first abnormal mammogram, “Oh, that’s nothing, I wouldn’t worry.” And I hadn’t.  Should I now?

Suddenly, words from the 23rd Psalm filtered through my consciousness as I neared the seating area.

“The Lord is my shepherd. I shall not want.

  He causeth me to lie down in green pastures. 

  He leadeth me beside still waters…”

Chana Meddin

Still waters replaced all worries and I felt lifted, as if walking on air inches from the carpeted floor. My feet must have touched the ground but I didn’t feel it. Within, all was silent as bliss flooded my awareness. I felt enveloped by God’s protection and love. So flooded that by the time I sat down I barely remembered where I was, much less the reason for my visit. Even more surprised because I don’t read the Bible and am not “religious,” so to speak.

Grace doesn’t visit as a reward earned for being good or righteous. It comes of God’s own accord, at least in my case.

The last time this happened was even more miraculous. It was the summer of 1992. I was told radiologists had found a “large mass” during a mammogram. Returning a week later for follow-up, I parked the car way up a hill, so I had time to walk and calm myself before arriving at the hospital.  

Concentrating on the Holy Names of God, I began feeling light, airy, spirit soaring. The walk to the hospital transformed from anxiety into joyous freedom.

The radiologist who greeted me looked a bit surprised at what must have been a radiant smile on my face instead of fear. She dutifully performed the tests before leaving me, still joy-filled, alone in the darkened room to wait.

About a half hour later she returned with a perplexed expression on her face. “We don’t have any explanation for this, but the mass has completely vanished and your mammogram is normal.”   


“We don’t understand. The mass has suddenly disappeared and your mammograms are all normal. You’re free to go. We can’t explain it,” she added, shaking her head in disbelief. “Do you understand?” she asked.

“Yes,” I whispered, smiling. 

One dictionary defines grace as “the freely given, unmerited love of God, the spirit of God to regenerate or strengthen.”

The name Chana is Hebrew for “grace.” It was my great grandmother’s name. It is pronounced like “Chanukkah” or challah bread. So, perhaps not surprisingly, the 23rd psalm heralded God’s love when most needed. Song of my ancestors. This Thanksgiving, gratitude overflowing for blessings known and unknown, seen and unseen; the gift is in being alive in this moment on earth.

Last week, life itself welcomed me awake. The gift of living felt breathtakingly miraculous and not to be taken for granted. Creation felt like one great vibration of love. 

Indeed, life is beautiful! By God’s Grace.

Chana “Hana” Meddin is a lifelong meditator, nature photographer, artist, and wildlife advocate. She has written for the Times of India’s ‘Speaking Tree’ and has a story published in Oswald Pereira’s book, ‘How to Create Miracles in Our Daily Life.’ She lives in Seattle with her cat, Annabelle Fluff. They both enjoy yoga.

More Stories by Chana Meddin