Aug. 4, 2013

Romans 15:13

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

Grandson Waylan and I were walking through the school parking lot. As we approached a snazzy little red Mercedes convertible, I knew the car had Waylan’s attention. As we walked by, Waylan turned to me and said, “Now that is a cool car.”

I could not agree more. Many years ago, it was a beautiful April spring day. My roommate, Robin, and I, just wanted to hop into a convertible and enjoy the perfect temperature, the no humidity and little wind. Unfortunately, neither of us felt we could afford to rent a convertible even for the day. We did the next best thing. We went to a car dealership and “test drove” a convertible. The salesperson surmised that we really just wanted to take the car for a spin with the top down. He begged out of going with us, shared that there was more gas than normal in the car and reminded us what time the dealership closed.

We took turns driving through the scenic and curvy Sauk Prairie countryside. We giggled until our sides hurt, let the wind whip our hair and smiled until the muscles on our faces hurt. We felt like Thelma and Louise crossing the United States, if only for an hour.

I think people who drive motorcycles, experience the rush of riding a pedal bike down a big hill or gallop a horse through an open field also have the same experience. There is just something that makes your face relax into a natural smile that cannot be wiped away when your body experiences the rush of wind. This is the exact feeling Robin and I longed for on that gorgeous spring day.

There is another way we can experience this feeling: when we are one with the Holy Spirit. For some Christians, the Holy Spirit is difficult to understand, believe and experience. I think of the Holy Spirit as the voice, whether it be one I hear in my head or one that is spoken to me via another person, that encourages me to do the right or appropriate things. The problem is that I do not always listen to that voice. I am not always confident it is the Holy Spirit or just a fleeting wind gust. When I trust in the Holy Spirit, I can experience a great power that feels as wonderful and refreshing as riding in a car with the top down. Unfortunately, we do not always release ourselves into the power of the Holy Spirit. Whether it is fear, control, lack of trust or confidence, we think we can handle things better by ourselves.

Later that day after dropping Waylan at home, I went for a run and saw two convertibles out enjoying the lovely summer evening. As I thought of the joy those two couples were enjoying, a smile crept over my face. I laughed once again thinking of Robin and I wheeling out of the car dealership.

I wish we would all seek Holy Spirit as much as Robin and I found a way to go for a ride in a convertible that day. Can we allow ourselves to let the Spirit blow through our hair and plaster a smile on our faces that just cannot be wiped away? Now that would be cool.

Please forgive us, Almighty God, when we fail to seek the presence of the Holy Spirit in our lives. We look for other sources of wind and breathe and freedom, rather than keeping ourselves rooted in presence here on this earth. May we all experience a cool reminder of the Holy Spirit this week. Amen.

Blessings –


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