I am writing this on Monday 12th July 2021. Last evening the thousands of people were in London to see eleven men kick a bag of wind from one end of a small field to the other, while another eleven men tried to kick it back the other way. Many millions throughout Europe were watching on television. For a couple of hours the traffic in Dawlish seemed to almost disappear. People were watching the ‘most important game for England for fifty years’. In the end it came down to one young man. Was he able to kick the ball into a net twelve yards away? No! I am reminded of the scripture in Ezekiel 2: 11 (CEV) Then I thought about everything I had done, including the hard work, and it was simply chasing the wind. Nothing on earth is worth the trouble.
As human beings, Christians believe that we were created in the image of God, three persons in relationship with each other. God the Father, God the Son, who is called Jesus, and God the Holy Spirit. Three persons one God. That is why we are constantly seeking after a relationship with someone, looking for identity and a meaning for life. So often we place our allegiance to a sports team, join the supporters club and follow the team together with other people. It doesn’t matter the shape or size of the ball, whether there is two wheels or four, or if it has an engine or not. We may experience winning for a time but disappointment will come, and with it a breakdown in our relationships with other supporters or the team.
Our longing for relationship can only be satisfied by God. Jesus came to this earth two thousand years ago to make that relationship possible, by taking our wrong doing upon himself and taking our death sentence instead of us, so we may live in a new relationship with the God. The mark of a Christian is to have God’s Spirit living within them. The Hebrew word for spirit is “Ruach” which can also be translated as wind or breath.
If we understand the idea of God, especially the Holy Spirit, being like a breath or wind, we can grasp the meaning of the Hebrew word “Ruach.” This word, featured in verses such as Genesis 1:2, Numbers 27:16, Job 33:4, among others, refers to God as a breath, a wind, or a life force that sustains all living things, human beings included. *
Romans 8: 2, 10-11 (CEV) The Holy Spirit will give you life that comes from Christ Jesus and will set you free from sin and death. So you are alive because God has accepted you, even though your bodies must die because of your sins. Yet God raised Jesus to life! God’s Spirit now lives in you, and he will raise you to life by his Spirit.
When Jesus was talking to Nicodemus, one of the religious teachers of Judaism, Jesus said this in answer to his question. John 3: 3-8. (CEV) “I tell you for certain that you must be born from above before you can see God’s kingdom!” Nicodemus asked, “How can a grown man ever be born a second time?” Jesus answered: I tell you for certain that before you can get into God’s kingdom, you must be born not only by water, but by the Spirit. Humans give life to their children. Yet only God’s Spirit can change you into a child of God. Don’t be surprised when I say that you must be born from above. Only God’s Spirit gives new life. The Spirit is like the wind that blows wherever it wants to. You can hear the wind, but you don’t know where it comes from or where it is going.
It is a question that must be answered, do you give your allegiance to the changing winds of opinion of this transitory world, or to the immortal God who created it? He is all powerful but if we ask he gives us his Spirit who will guide us in the right way to live in relationship with him as his family, and we inherit the full benefits of being Children of God now and for all eternity to come. A meaningful relationship that will never ever disappoint us.