Saturday, September 14, 2013

Spirit wind

TODAY'S SPECIAL: John 3:1-21

TO CHEW ON: "The wind blows where it wishes and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit." John 3:8

Jesus' description of the born-again life reminds me of Philip the Samaritan evangelist. In the midst of his meetings, the Spirit impressed him to go to the Gaza road. There he met an Ethiopian eunuch, servant of Queen Candace and a spiritual seeker. He happened to be reading the prophet Isaiah.

After Philip explained the Scriptures and their fulfillment in Jesus to the man, he believed and asked to be baptized. Then, "The Spirit of the Lord caught Philip away, so that the eunuch saw him no more...But Philip was found at Azotus...." (entire story: Acts 8:26-40).

Such wind-like encounters still take place today. What happened to my niece Brenda is an example (names have been changed).

Several years ago Brenda's daughter Kayla was found to have a rare type of paediatric brain cancer. She went through the treatments and today lives cancer-free. While Kayla was getting treatment, Brenda took part in an internet support forum for parents of cancer victims. Recently she hadn't been frequenting that forum but after she got an update she checked in again.

While there, she read a plea for information from a mom (Lou) whose little boy (Tevyan) had the exact same cancer as Kayla's. Brenda contacted the woman and they began an email correspondence.

Some weeks later Brenda and her family were on vacation in a U.S. city. They had decided on a whim to do a little shopping so picked a hotel as one does (swimming pool - ✔, wi-fi - ✔, restaurant - ✔ etc.). In the hotel lobby the first morning she noticed a little bald boy and thought Cancer. I know what they're going through.

The second day at breakfast she overheard a conversation between the little boy and his mother, and heard the mother distinctly called the little guy "Tevyan."

Corey, Brenda's husband said of that moment: "Brenda's face went white and she said to me, 'That must be Tevyan and Lou who I've been emailing.'"

Brenda went over, introduced herself and discovered they were indeed the people she had met on the forum. Kayla was even able to encourage little Tevyan in person.

I know this meeting didn't have overt spiritual overtones. Maybe that part is still to come. However, who but God the Holy Spirit could orchestrate such an encounter to encourage two mothers' hearts?

Have you seen evidence of the Spirit's wind in your life? Watch for it today!

PRAYER: Dear Holy Spirit. Please make my life as sensitive to Your moving as dandelion fluff. Amen.

MORE: Holy Cross Day

Today is Holy Cross Day on the church calendar. The liturgy for today begins with this collect:

"Almighty God, whose Son our Savior Jesus Christ was lifted high upon the cross that he might draw the whole world to himself: Mercifully grant that we, who glory in the mystery of our redemption, may have grace to take up our cross and follow him; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, in glory everlasting. Amen."

Complete liturgy for the day.

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