We welcomed recent days of steady rain in these west Houston suburbs. Now I welcome this break in the rain for a neighborhood hike. Scattered rain-clouds, flung in a wide sweep across the sky, hide the evening sun on this Texas Gulf Coast. Developers planted our Katy prairie land with trees two and three decades ago, and they now form a trekker’s pleasant canopy overhead. Around and below me, the gentle wind rustles through the grass and flowers and trees. Overhead it moves the clouds across the half-darkened sky.
I think of Jesus’ comparison of God’s Spirit to the wind. Both are invisible but powerful, unpredictable but obvious in action and result. The biblical languages use the same words for “wind” and “spirit” — ruach in Hebrew and pneuma in Greek. Now the breeze blows again, and the leaves declare in tongues of trees and of bushes the power and glory of God.
The wind stirs the heavens, shapes and transports the clouds, determines the weather of the world. The rain waters the earth, causes plantings to sprout, renews the colorful flowers and gives life to arid grasslands. So also does God’s Spirit, the wind of heaven, bring life and renewal and vitality to parched and drought-stricken souls. The Spirit brings us the Water of life, the living stream opened by the sacrifice and exaltation of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.
It’s beginning to rain. Hear the voice of the Father
Saying, “Whosoever will, let him drink of this Water!
I will pour out my Spirit on your sons and your daughters.”
If you’re thirsty and dry, lift your hands to the sky —
It’s beginning to rain.
(John 3:8; Ezek. 37:1-14; Zech. 13:1; Hos. 6:1-3; Zech. 10:1; John 7:37-39; Joel 2:28; Acts 2:16-21.)