Monday, October 10, 2011
This past week with my youth group that I am a leader in, we were talking about what are some ways you can strengthen your faith. During our discussion I thought of an analogy given a few years back in a sermon. I didn't share the analogy at the time with the girls, but I have been thinking about it through the week.
The analogy came from guest speaker Scott Cochrane at Crossroads Church sometime in 2008 I would guess. He talked about windy places. About how the Spirit of God is sometime understood as similar to the wind, effective and powerful, but not discernable to the human eye except by what it does. Only this wind is not ruled by the forces of nature, but is the Spirit of God choosing to come.
Windy places then are places where God is at work. Places (or people) that are responsive to the Spirit. Places that are going to build your awareness of the Spirits presence already in you and around you.
So where do you feel the wind blow?
I am aware of the Spirit when I am in nature. When I am seeing the absolute beauty in trees, mountains, sky, stars, sunsets, rivers, animals, that He created.
I feel the Spirit of God working in me when I am consistent in reading His word. When I am reading and open to hearing His voice. It truly is alive, and often God will bring a verse out that is so relevant to what I'm going through. Or when I am leaning in to hearing the Word spoken through someone else, let's say on Sunday morning, or in a book.
I am aware of Him moving in me and around me when I am singing songs of praise to Him. Either at home alone listening to my little ipod shuffle, or at church with a group of people that are also singing praise to Him with hunger, with passion. Music that lifts high the name of God is very powerful to me and makes me aware of the Spirit.
Another very important windy place for me is to spend time with other people that are open and obedient to God in their own lives. Hearing other people's stories, sharing in their lives, watching their example of faith, of trust and of love for God. I know for lots of people reading this, they could say this about Adam and Melissa. Windy place, hanging out with those two. And its because they are open to Him, and willing to be fiercly obedient, even if it is painful. And when I (or some of you) spend time with them, it is a windy place that helps strengthen my faith. Adam and Melissa are just one example of this. There are lots of other people in my life that I could name here. But we influence each other. Being around passionate Christ-followers will influence you in that direction.
So again - where do you feel the wind blow? What places can you choose to be in that are going to make you aware of His Spirit and help strengthen your faith?