I love it when the Holy Spirit highlights a verse for me that takes me to another scripture and gives both of them new meaning and provides insight into this spiritual journey I am on. I especially like it when He uses a new verse for me to re-frame my previous understanding of another verse that was more “common” to me. I recently “saw” this verse for the first time…
“The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit.” – John 3:8
How could I have not seen this before? I’ve read the book of John many times. In fact, I just read it to my girls recently. This time when I read this verse, it hit the spot in my heart I think it must have been intended to hit. Maybe I was just now ready to receive what God wanted me to hear. Maybe I’m just now in a season of life where it’s truth would make the biggest impact on me. I don’t know why He does that or how He does that, but I know God saves things in plain sight for us to find at just the right time on our journey. I have no doubt about that! (Ummm, He does it because He LOVES us!)
I don’t know what this verse means to any of you when you read it. You may look at it and wonder why it has been such a key verse to me since I found it. Well, it might be helpful to know the other scripture that came to mind when I read John 3:8 and the meaning of it began to sink into my spirit….at least the meaning as it applies to me right now
“Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming.” – Ephesians 4:14
I am familiar with this verse in Ephesians. It has been one of those verses used as a warning against anyone who doesn’t have the same doctrinal beliefs as the ones I grew up with. At least that is the way I always heard it presented. When I look back up at the verse in John I can’t help but see the wind a little differently. I can’t help but see a counterfeit. I’ve noticed lately that not only does the devil like to twist scripture, he likes to use it to shut us down in our relationship with God. I’ve noticed that many of the things that God does for us are counterfeited by the enemy. Many of them are right there in the scriptures. God told us what to look out for. He told us what He is for us and how the enemy would twist it.
When I read that verse in Ephesians, my first impulse is to want to shut down and gain control and look at every teaching with a skeptical, judging eye…for myself. That will give me the most accurate, safe spiritual journey, right? Just stay out of the wind, wind is bad. Uh, wait a minute…wind doesn’t look too bad in that verse in John. It does look mysterious. It does look uncontrollable. It does look like it could lift you off your feet and change the course of your life. So…is the wind good or bad? Uh, it looks to me like it depends on WHO is controlling the wind…the flesh…or The Spirit. Yes, there is false doctrine, the enemy has made sure of that. There are false teachings about just about everything you might want to bring up. God has given us options and choices and you can bet the enemy wants to exploit those options and choices to his advantage.
But, God has taken care of us. He has given us the ultimate protection. We don’t have to be skeered. We don’t have to be “in control”. We just need to be walking with the Spirit…He will do the rest…He will lead us into HIS truth. We can just sit back and enjoy the ride as long as He is the wind on our back…even if it appears we are being tossed around a bit. If it is His breath that is tossing me…move out of the way and let Him blow. I don’t have to be afraid…neither do you!
13 For if you live according to the flesh, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live.
14 For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God. 15 The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship.[a] And by him we cry, “Abba,[b] Father.” – Romans 8:13-15
Like I said at the beginning this verse in John has been a breath of fresh air to me. I like adventure. I like learning new things about Him. I like experiencing new things about Him and His Kingdom and His kids that I’ve never known before. I also have to fight against fear and control and give myself permission to experience new things trusting that He will lead me into and out of the places He desires me to go or not go. I have to trust that He is the wind that is directing and redirecting my steps.
One more thing…which may be a little personal, but it’s important…I’ve been talking to God about how to overcome double mindedness. SHOCK! Yes, I can be as double minded as the next person when I don’t walk with Him. I can be as double minded as the next person when I go about my life without asking HIM first. Some days I have trouble with faith and trust and couldn’t muster up a mustard seed worth to save my life. Some days I say He is in charge of all of it and then take it back at the least bit of resistance. I don’t want to live that way. I don’t want that kind of life or faith. I’ve been asking Him what to do about that and while I was searching for the scripture reference for this blog post, these are the scriptures that popped up…
5 If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. 6 But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. 7 That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. 8 Such a person is double-minded and unstable in all they do. – James 1:5-8
7 Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. 8 Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. – James 4:7-8
Thank you Lord for the wind of the Holy Spirit to steer this ship! Forgive my doubts and fears and double-minded ways. I want to walk according to your Spirit, not my flesh!