Brrr, that cold wind! You feeling cold lately? Has the warmth of a more intense love for Jesus blown by? Do you feel distant & alone? I do at times. Maybe it's the blowing of the north wind? I say, "Let the winds blow!" These times devoid of tingly feelings or "Holy Ghost goose bumps" provide us unique opportunities to demonstrate our love for the Lord through diligence: in worship, prayer, and study of His Word, even though we may not feel His presence.
Does an absence of feelings mean the Lord is any less worthy of worship? Just because warm-fuzzies have left the temple, doesn't mean He has? On the contrary, our loving Father often calls on cold seasons to grant us the honor of learning to walk by faith and not just by feeling.
My fickle feelings can be affected by what I ate last night, by what my family said to me this morning, or even by a simple 'no reply' from someone I'm reaching out to. But faith is a constantâ€”independent of outside circumstances. Therefore, the Lord, wanting the best for His children, beckons us beyond, to walk by faith in the surety & stability of His faithfulness.
With Solomon's maiden, can we say, "Lord, sufficient is the hope of Your permanent presence to face the blowing north wind in seasons when You feel absent"? Can we say, "Lord, if I can best demonstrate what You have done in my life through periods of coldness, then so be it"?
If you're going through a cold spell, if the north wind is howling, rejoice! This is a unique opportunity to offer Jesus worship & adoration, praise & thanksgiving, regardless of our feelings. In His past faithfulness and His future glory, find present strength & joy to love & trust Him through the chill, to stand & sing through the stormy gale.
South wind, on the other hand, is hot & arid. As God's children, we are not exempt from days of dryness and times of fiery trial. Could you be in a season of south wind? If so, benefit by remembering that itâ€™s not in our prosperity that others see the real glory & power of our Sustainer, but as we're carried by His grace through difficult days, held firm by an unearthly peace that passes understanding.
Have you ever been sitting outside when all of a sudden, you smell something good cooking? The hope of a future meal causes present bodily activity: your mouth begins to water and your stomach starts to growl as the fragrance reaches your nostrils. So too, when difficult winds blow, a fragrance is released. It's either a foul odor of bitterness & angerâ€”as is too often the case with me, I'm afraidâ€”or it's the sweet smelling savor of praise & thanksgiving, of worship & adoration... especially when it makes no worldly sense.
I'm learning that the wind doesn't determine the fragrance but merely carries along the aroma already present. Therefore, when I smell bitterness or hostility about me, I ought to pray, "Father, the problem isn't him, her, them, or it. It's me. Father, forgive me. I thought I was farther along than this. But here You've brought me instead to this perfect place again: dependent upon You for the grace I need to become a sweet fragrance & a pleasing aroma."
Friends & family, instead of "It's his fault," or "They don't get me," or "Why is she doing that," why don't we try something like this: "Jesus, I stinketh. Rather than repel, I want to repent. Father, forgive me. Change my heart. Wash me clean." Surely, by His Spirit, we will find a pleasing fragrance emanating from our lives: His!