Summer is here in South Africa and at the Retreat Center it also means the wind is here. I’m not just talking about a summer breeze blowing gently off the ocean, but a sand-blowing, building-shaking kind of wind. In fact, it was blowing so hard the other night I thought Oceans Retreat Center was going to be picked up like Dorthy’s house in the Wizard of Oz.
As the windows were rattling at 3 am I was thinking about the brute power generated by this invisible force. It made me think of the Spirit’s power described in the Creation story as “hovering over the surface” and how out of this Wind life emerged out of nothing. I also pondered the “New Creation story” of Pentecost where the Wind of the Spirit shook a prayer- filled room with Holy Fire and the Kingdom of God broke forth.
As the curtains kept rhythm with the blowing wind, my mind wandered to ALL that has occurred in our world this year. I cried out in prayer to the Lord, “I need the Wind!” Jesus lived this dependency during His life on earth. He relied upon the Holy Spirit. Check out this list:
Birth = Conceived by the Holy Spirit (Luke 1:35).
Baptism = Filled with the Holy Spirit (Luke 4:18)
Sealed = Spirit stamped the Father’s love upon Him (John 6:27)
Led = He went where the Spirit told Him to go (Luke 4:1)
Joy = The Spirit brought Him joy in ministry (Luke 10:21)
Taught = Spirit gave Him the words to teach (Acts 1:2)
Miracles = It was through the Spirit that He performed miracles (Luke 4:14-15)
Resurrected = Spirit raised Jesus from the dead (Romans 8:11)
Obedience = Jesus remained obedient even unto death by the Spirit (Hebrews 9:14)
If Jesus needed the Holy Spirit how much more so do we who are children of Adam.
2020 has been a tough year for the entire world. I know several people who have suffered with enormous pain and loss. For me It has felt like a deep season of emptying, of God purging my heart of junk it doesn’t need-in order to make room for what is needed the most.
As we have been in Southern Africa for almost a year we have come to realize the demonic strongholds are deeply intrenched in our valley and no amount of human strength will break its bondage. As the prophet Zechariah so correctly declared that “not by might nor by power but by my Spirit, says the LORD Almighty,” (4:6).
The exciting aspect of what I believe is happening around the world and even here in Fish Hoek, is that weak, empty, followers of Christ are starting to realize we can’t do it with out the Wind. Recently Patty and I found a prayer meeting on Monday nights. It is hard to tell with social distancing and online viewers how many people attend the church, but what I can tell you is that pastor knew he needed help and called the people to cry out for supernatural power from the Spirit of God. At first only a handful of people came, but in a few months it has grown to 70 plus people. What is really amazing is how many high school students attend as well as people of every tribe and nation. The Wind is starting to blow.
As 2020 comes to a close, I believe that in this new season of 2021- followers of Christ will be crying out for a fresh Wind of Revival; where believers will grasp the need to live in the radical dependence of the Wind of The Spirit just as Jesus and the early church modeled.
May this “WInd-Prayer” be your prayer as well!