Last night I went out for a run. It has been slightly less hot these last few days than before but it is still quite warm for runs. So last night a storm front rolled through and I knew it was my chance! I took off. The front packed some serious winds, but substantially dropped the temperature and it was for that I was very thankful. The blocks on which I run are cardinally aligned, so I took off West, turned South, then East, North and back West to complete the route. The wind was gusting, due North. Within a few steps I realized I had a workout set out for me, as I had roughly only 1 mile of 5 with the wind to my back. For four miles I had cross winds or head winds.
As usual my mind started processing the Spiritual analogy. The Greek word pneuma which is usually translated “spirit” can also mean wind. And the Spirit is moving. All of the time. He is at work to glorify the Son by working out saving faith in people’s lives through the preaching of the Gospel and reminding us of that which we have been taught by the Scriptures to help us to put to death sin and live holy lives. The Spirit, the wind, is blowing. And we are commanded to run the race of life with endurance. Sometimes the Spirit is blowing one way and smacking us in the side of the face. Sometimes we are running the exact opposite direction the Spirit is moving and have to fight extremely hard to press on our desired course. And sometimes, those blessed times of obedience and submission, we are running the same direction as the Spirit and He is at our back. He gives us a sustained push to make it up the hill, He reduces our effort by boosting our stride. Because we have the same goal as Him.
“But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you.”
– John 14.26
But there is something else that happens when the wind is at your back. The breeze does not cool you down. Last night the gusts were so strong that my ponytail was blowing up in my face when the wind was at my back, but there is an eerie sense of calm when you are running with the wind, and the heat that you are producing is not being pulled off your body as quickly. You become keenly aware of your heat and discomfort: the internal and mental fights of running become amplified, and it is easy to forget the extra push you are getting from the wind. Until you turn back into it.
This analogy, as all analogies, falls apart when pushed to it’s logical end. But I was reflecting tonight on the call that I heard issued once by Henry Blackaby: “Find out where God is working and join Him”. Do not waste your time trying to get God to bless what you want to do, do what He wants you to do. Get involved where He is at work.
“I have many more things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come. He will glorify Me, for He will take of Mine and will disclose it to you. All things that the Father has are Mine; therefore I said that He takes of Mine and will disclose it to you.”
– John 16.12-15