On a warm quiet day as I sat alone admiring the evening sunset, my heart and mind was silently feeling after the Lord's presence. A slight breeze began to brush up against my face that added to the peaceful moment. As the breeze turned into a brisk wind, I noticed the treetops moving in a spontaneous dance of unity as the wind whirled through the leaves. I could hear and see what the wind was doing, but I didn't know where the wind came from or where it was going. As I was meditating on the Lord during this breezy sunset, my spirit increasingly became aware of God's gentle presence; it seemed to happen so quickly. And just like the breeze, I could feel Him so strongly.
Many a times it seems that we are touched by the spontaneous breeze of His presence, totally amazed on how easy it was to feel Him. Without any effort, the tears freely run down our face as we weep in His presence. Other times we seem to complicate our times with God by trying to force our way into His presence. We pace back and forth and repeat the same words over and over while we pray.
After a few frustrating prayers, why would we want to go through all that when all we had to do was just relax and wait for the wind of God to give us a fresh touch. When God breathes on you, it is easy to touch Him!
Being led by an invisible force that you cannot see, but feel, takes a little bit of time to learn. As one matures in the Lord, one will become sensitive to God and how He works.
As we look into the unseen winds of God, let us journey into the supernatural operation of the Spirit. Let us learn and sense the ever gentle breeze of His powerful spirit.
THE BORN AGAIN WINDS
When mentioning the supernatural winds of God, we are speaking about how the very spirit of God operates in our lives, which is the main purpose of this article. However, we should briefly consider how the winds of God work in conjunction with the saving of a soul during the salvation process.
Scripture teaches that no man comes to the Father except the Spirit draws him. This "Spirit" is the very presence of God that speaks to each and every one of us.
When a person responds to the invitation of God; it should cause them to repent of their sins, be water baptized in the name of Jesus and be baptized with the Holy Ghost speaking in other tongues as the spirit gives the utterance. (Acts 2:38)
We then can conclude that this Spirit baptism is a type of the wind of God as recorded in Acts 2:1-4. Therefore, as we will see later, being led by the spirit of God not only starts when we are born again (John 3:5), but continues as we mature in the Lord.
WE ARE TO BE LIKE THE WIND
In the last chapter we briefly mentioned that when a person is born again, that their spiritual birth is brought about like a "mighty wind."
While peering into the simple truths of being born again (according to John 3:3-8), we find a shiny nugget of truth that sheds some light on how we are to be led by God when and after we are born again. The key verse is...
"The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit."
Even though Jesus is relating this to Nicodemus in light of salvation, we can see a marvelous unspoken truth here. This truth describes how a person that is born of the Spirit will live, flow and be led by the Spirit of God.
Jesus points out that as the wind blows in the natural, so does it blow in the life of a spiritual person. The person that is truly born again will live a spontaneous, flowing life led by the Spirit (wind) of God.
The interesting aspect of this life style is that, just like the natural wind; you may not always know where to go. But, when the Spirit moves in your life, then you will know what to do.
Some may not understand where you are coming from, where you are going or what you are doing. God has a purpose and we can enjoy being led by the wind (Spirit) in that purpose. We can ride on the circuit of God's wind even though we may be misunderstood.
FLOWING WITH THE WIND
Often times it may seem that we only have our human resources to lean upon in times of crisis. Some decisions seem so complex and hard, that finding answers for them can stress us out. We hesitate to move because making a wrong decision can mess things up.
But then, all of a sudden as we sit quietly waiting on the wind of God; the answer comes swirling through our innermost being with such peace and resolution!
A cry, "Thank you Lord for helping me!" comes deep from inside your soul; then out through your lips as you rejoice in the Lord! You have your direction now! An answer has come!
As you move forward flowing in God's purpose, you sense a freedom as you soar in the Spirit. You are now flowing with the wind as God gently leads you to your next destination.
This process of flowing in the Spirit (wind) is what is meant by the scripture in Rom 8:14 that reads, For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.
BENDING WITH THE WIND
Often times, living for God will entail walking through places that will be totally unfamiliar to us. Sometimes the fear of the unknown may cause us to hesitate to move forward in the Lord.
It is not uncommon for the Lord to have an individual step out in faith and do something unconventional and contrary to human reasoning.
The circumstances have been put in place, the Lord has opened the door for you to walk through. The wind of God moves and you sense a dark trial ahead. As you brace your spirit for the hardship, you cry unto God "if this cup may pass from me."
As the storm begins, you now have to deal with two types of winds; the stormy wind of doubt and the gentle breeze of God’s small still voice.
The storm is raging around you. Crack! Bang! A limb here, a fallen tree there; so much debris is flying everywhere. As some of your comrades fall around you, you begin to wonder if you will even make it!
The winds get stronger and stronger; you are bending like a reed shaken in the stormy wind. Your roots are holding with each change of the winds direction. You keep bending without breaking. You are determined to hold on.
The strong wind subsidies and a gentle breeze is a refreshing sign of things to come. The voice of God breaks in on your battered soul as that gentle breeze of God brings healing and refreshing strength. You have made it through without breaking because you were able to bend with the wind.
GOD'S SPIRITUAL BLINDERS
The words, "God, I do not see or understand what you are trying to tell me", is often echoed by every one of us. Scripture brings out an interesting occasion where the disciples couldn't see what God was doing.
Then he took unto him the twelve, and said unto them, Behold, we go up to Jerusalem, and all things that are written by the prophets concerning the Son of man shall be accomplished. For he shall be delivered unto the Gentiles, and shall be mocked, and spitefully entreated, and spitted on: And they shall scourge him, and put him to death: and the third day he shall rise again. And they understood none of these things: and this saying was hid from them, neither knew they the things which were spoken. (Luk 18:31-34)
It's interesting, that the disciples clearly heard Jesus tell them that He was going to die. Yet it was hid from them and they didn't get it. Why?
I believe the reason was two-fold. 1) They had their plans on how Jesus was going to reign on earth, 2) God had His plan on how He was going to reign in the hearts of men!
Many good hearted Christians have questioned God's timing and will because they couldn't understand what was going on, even though they were told.
There may be other reasons God may hide things from us. For example, He could be protecting us from harm. I am sure if we knew some things before it was time, we would mess them up.
God's will may not always be completely realized until God opens our understanding to it. This same thing happened to the disciples.
Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the Scriptures, (Luk 24:45).
Jesus may speak a word to us that we just don't understand. But all it takes is a gentle breeze of God's spirit to enlighten our eyes. God reveals His plans at just the right time whether through His word, voice or through circumstances. His timing is perfect!
THE MULBERRY TREES
"Sshhh, what is that noise over there?" answered one of the enemies of David as he heard a noise in the trees behind them.
David had already heard from God about this battle. He was to sneak behind the enemy and just wait. He was commanded by the Lord... "And let it be, when thou hearest the sound of a going in the tops of the mulberry trees, that then thou shalt bestir thyself: for then shall the LORD go out before thee, to smite the host of the Philistines."
Simple enough we would think, right? But, there are two things he had to do in faith before God would help him.
Stepping out in his own might would of cost him his life. Trying to control the circumstance could of gotten his army and friends killed.
What an anxious time for David to have to sit and wait on God. Sitting patiently right next to the enemy until you get the nod from God is something we must learn. David's faith would be justified with just one sign from God. But, until then, he had to wait for the gentle wind of God to move through the top of the mulberry trees!
The breeze of God moved through the trees; that was all he needed! The victory was won because he patiently waited on the wind.
TUNING INTO THE SPIRIT
As one looks into the ever-present anointing of Jesus Christ, one cannot help desiring to operate in the realm of the Spirit as Jesus did.
Operating in the realm of the Spirit just doesn't happen because we want it. As a matter of fact, God will not entrust a person with the same anointing Jesus had unless he is disciplined like Jesus was. Jesus was very sensitive to the Spirit's leading because we read...
Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise. For the Father loveth the Son, and sheweth him all things that himself doeth: and he will shew him greater works than these, that ye may marvel. (Mat 5:19-20)
A lot of us will read the above scripture and wonder how Jesus "tuned into the spirit" like He did. It is incredible the sensitivity He had!! He simply saw what the Spirit wanted to do and turned around and did it. He could see (feel) in the Spirit because He learned God's voice.
The undeniable, unspoken truth of how He obeyed the Spirit is woven throughout the scriptures. Jesus was so tuned into the spirit, because He was so dead to self! Self-denial is a very deep subject that will not be covered in this article in dept. However, assuming that a person has already actively entered this part of their walk with God; let’s look at some of things that can be done to fine-tune our walk in the Spirit.
We need to start off by covering the basic foundation of being sensitive to God's spirit. The foundational disciplines of prayer, fasting, bible reading and righteous living is the rails that keep you on the right paths as you are led by God.
One attitude to cultivate in one’s life is soberness. Soberness focuses your mind on the tasks at hand. A sober person has learned to control their mind and not let it get caught up in foolishness. Soberness will actually make you sensitive to God's voice.
Being transparent with God is a must. The reason being is that honesty causes us to be real and to maintain humility in our spirit. It is imperative that we always realize that we can do nothing without His spirit guiding us. Therein lies the secret to being sensitive to God's anointed direction.
Like the natural wind that I have eluded to earlier, the wind does not blow hard all the time. It has lulls when there is not even the slightest breeze moving. God doesn't always move. As a matter of fact He often moves very slowly. The problem we often have is that, through our own ambitions we try to force the wind to move. Being sensitive to God is being sensitive to when God is moving or not. It is all in knowing the timing of God.
And of course the most important aspect that everything hinges on, is obedience! He knows if we will be obedient or not! The more we obey, the more sensitive we become. Obedience is how we show God that He can trust us with more works and exploits!
THE PHASES OF A CLOUD
Throughout this article I have keyed on the wind of God. But I would like to focus on how it is done in everyday practical uses.
So it was alway: the cloud covered it by day, and the appearance of fire by night. And when the cloud was taken up from the tabernacle, then after that the children of Israel journeyed: and in the place where the cloud abode, there the children of Israel pitched their tents. At the commandment of the LORD the children of Israel journeyed, and at the commandment of the LORD they pitched: as long as the cloud abode upon the tabernacle they rested in their tents. And when the cloud tarried long upon the tabernacle many days, then the children of Israel kept the charge of the LORD, and journeyed not. And so it was, when the cloud was a few days upon the tabernacle; according to the commandment of the LORD they abode in their tents, and according to the commandment of the LORD they journeyed. And so it was, when the cloud abode from even unto the morning, and that the cloud was taken up in the morning, then they journeyed: whether it was by day or by night that the cloud was taken up, they journeyed. Or whether it were two days, or a month, or a year, that the cloud tarried upon the tabernacle, remaining thereon, the children of Israel abode in their tents, and journeyed not: but when it was taken up, they journeyed. At the commandment of the LORD they rested in the tents, and at the commandment of the LORD they journeyed: they kept the charge of the LORD, at the commandment of the LORD by the hand of Moses. (Num 9:16-23)
We can clearly see above that the people of God did not move unless two things happened; 1) A command from God to move was given; 2) The cloud or fire moved from off the tabernacle.
We are the tabernacle of God! When the anointing (wind of God) leads us in a certain direction, we should move with it. When the winds of God are not flowing, then be still and silently wait on God for His next move.
Saints often find themselves in a spiritual wasteland when they forge ahead down their own paths because they just couldn't learn the timing of God and wait. When the wind seems to be still for long periods of time and you have not felt God for a while, just relax and trust the Lord. He will be on time and you will know when it's time to move in the spirit again!
THE SEVEN MOVES OF GOD
When working in the realm of the spirit, if a person is sensitive to what God is doing, they will often witness God move in what I refer to as "The seven moves of God."
These moves of God can happen individually or corporately which include; Healing-Miracles, Preaching-Prophecy, Comfort-Refreshings, Rebuking-Repentance, Victory-Rejoicing, Teaching-Instruction and Ministering-Giving.
These manifestations (winds) of the Spirit of God are sometimes very distinctive in their purpose and what they accomplish. For example; a manifestation of God's spirit to heal in a service feels different then the word being preached in the spirit of prophecy.
We have men of God among us that are very sensitive to these moves of the Spirit. And because of this sensitivity, their ministries manifest signs and wonders, prophecy and mighty works.
They are so successful because they have learned to be very sensitive to God's voice. They have learned to tell which voice is talking to them and respond accordingly.
Learning to be sensitive to these moves of God comes by being in them; feeling and seeing what is done. A life of soberness, sacrifice, prayer and fasting are the "sharpening stones" that fine-tune our awareness of God's will.
As we get sensitive enough, we will know what God wants to do before we even get in a service or before a situation arises. "Words of the Lord" often come before we are confronted with any given situation.
THE WAY IT REALLY IS
In conclusion, I would really like to tell you "The way it really is" when considering the winds of God and how He operates.
So many of our services and personal direction is either missed or slowed down because we try to do it our way. Somehow we get programed to do it a certain way and end up hindering God more than flowing with Him. As the years have gone by I have learned that the more I leave my will out, the more I am aware of God's will.
One of the most important lessons that we must learn is that God is not the butler. Sometimes we approach God and tell Him what we want. Requesting a need is different than demanding a want. It is all in the attitude we come to Him with.
One of the greatest attitudes that we can possess is that of a servant towards God. Requesting needs and wants in the light of what God wants will make one’s life sensitive.
God is most pleased with a child of His, when He can tell him to sit in the corner and be still until he is told he can come out. And if that child cries to get out or runs off, then he will have to sit longer. And whatever that child does, he better not stamp his feet in a fit!
Another important attitude of a servant is being content with God's will no matter where it brings them. Being content between each phase of God's will, will bring us there quicker than if we tried to push God along.
In closing, I would have to say that the biggest hindrance to God is not sin or the devil, but our will. Listen to this conversation...
While sitting contently by the cross looking up in the eyes of Jesus, you feel a gentle breeze of His presence move through your soul. A small still voice whispers the words, "Will you follow my footsteps no matter where it leads?" As your flesh struggles to answer; your love for Jesus overcomes your will as you answer Him, "Yes, Lord, everywhere you go, I will go!" Then He graciously answers back, "Then, you must let me have full control of everything in your life. You must listen and obey my voice when I speak." As you lay in puddles of tears, in your garden of Gethsemane, your life is thrust into a life of self-denial. Your heart's cry is to be led by His gentle breeze for the rest of your life! Your prayer then becomes, "Not my will, but thy will be done!”