Day 12 – Inviting the ­Spirit-Wind to Blow

“The wind blows where it pleases, and you hear its sound, but you don’t know where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit.”

—John 3:8

The day I looked at this verse, I was struggling with accepting myself, especially as how God sees me. I wrote this in my journal: I acutely feel the tension between my human and my divine self. Neither rules’they are both present and at work. I need you, Lord, to help me balance the good way to walk, and to stop questioning myself and my worth in You. I want to just go with the flow but I think—I overthink. How do I rest and work in You, Lord?

In this verse, Jesus gives this enigmatic gem to Nicodemus, a man deep in the ministry of God and a high-ranking member of the Jewish ruling class. Nicodemus knew the law, but still came to Jesus because something was missing. He came under the cover of night, perhaps out of shame he couldn’t solve his inner need on his own. The day I read this verse, I was also coming to the Lord under the cloak of shame of my own self-doubt. Nicodemus wanted to know how to know God, and so did I.

This verse is not a ringer that helps us grasp the Holy Spirit. The Spirit is not subject to us, but only goes where the Father sends Him. He partners with the will of God alone to reveal the person and work of Jesus. We can’t tell Him what to do, where to go, who to save, or when to do it. We can only petition our King, asking in humble worship. We are to invite the wind to blow in our direction. We can make a tunnel for Him to blow through, but He is still going to determine when, where, and how (if at all) He will blow through it.

Maybe that was why Jesus gave Nicodemus such a head-scratcher. Jesus could see the Pharisees thought that who they were or how well they followed religious rule meant they could tell God what to do. But human perfection is never the key to answered prayer, even if I live like that sometimes. Perhaps that’s what got me to the mental state I was in the day I wrote that prayer. I know I can’t tell God what to do! But at the same time, in all my efforts to be right, I’d created this dynamic between my heart and mind that left me unstable in my thinking, not remembering how to find my rest.

The solution to this instability is surrender. I’ve found my heart position and attitude in prayer determines what I get out of it. Perhaps Nicodemus wasn’t coming so much for answers or solutions, but for wisdom. Perhaps he realized this in his conversation with Jesus, looking at things from a different angle to understand.

My goal in coming to the Holy Spirit can’t start with my wants and desires. Remembering who He is breaks the back of my pride and opens the door for the fresh wind of the Holy Spirit to blow through. Like that first cold front blowing through Texas after a long, hot summer, He restores my soul. In letting Him be the Lord and humbly asking for His presence, the Spirit comes. Anything less leaves us with nothing to stand on. In surrender, we remember He is the solid rock on which we stand.

Prayer

Come, Holy Spirit, and blow aside anything in the way of Your refreshing, reassuring presence. Remind me who You are and enable me to stand in confidence in Your finished work and desire to be with me. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Thought

Do you harbor any doubts, insecurities, pride, fear, or traditional way of thinking that gets in the way of the Holy Spirit blowing in and through your life?

Band Discussion

  • Have you been through a time in your faith when you’ve struggled with doubt, especially self-doubt? How did the Lord speak into that and remind you of who you are in Him?
  • Has religion ever left you dry and dusty in your soul?
  • Share what you’ve discovered in seeking a fresh movement of the Holy Spirit in your life.