As leaders in the body of Christ we must embrace the justice system of the kingdom of God’s love in order to activate, facilitate, and release God’s people into the same. We are not called to lead people with mere Biblical principles, demanding that people adhere to the rules of a Christian faith. We are called to lead others into the empowerment of God’s grace, whereby they become sons and daughters of God with the attributes of the family of God among the families of the earth. We must lead people to know who God is, who they are, what their purpose is, and how to rise by the power of God’s grace to subdue the world with life and to manifest truth that crumbles every lie. This cannot be done from the family tree of the knowledge of good and evil. It can only be done from the family tree of life.
Isaiah 32:1 Behold, a king will reign righteously and princes will rule justly.
As leaders, we must set the example of being princes in the community of God’s life. We are sons and daughters of the King and our purpose is that of the kingdom of God. His kingdom must be called for, sought out, and lived for in all that we do. We cannot act like the sons of the world. We must be an example to God’s people and a leader in influencing the world with the life of God’s kingdom. The secret is in the focus of our hearts.
Isaiah 32:2 Each will be like a refuge from the wind and a shelter from the storm, like streams of water in a dry country, like the shade of a huge rock in a parched land. (NAS)
What does it mean to be a refuge from the wind? Wind represents change. It can be good or it can be bad. The winds of the world attempt to distract us from things that really matter. There are a lot of changes going on in the world. The wind is blowing strongly and as sons and daughters of God we must not be moved or swayed by the winds of the world. Winds can represent instability or an unknowing of what is next. That unknowing can tempt us to be fearful in our hearts. Surely people in the world are often shaken and swayed by what they cannot control, understand, or clearly see. It is only in the presence of God that we find peace and stability in a world that is tossed two and fro. We can learn a great lesson from Jesus and His disciples as they crossed a lake on a day of great wind.
Luke 8:22-25 Now it happened, on a certain day, that He got into a boat with His disciples. And He said to them, “Let us cross over to the other side of the lake.” And they launched out. But as they sailed He fell asleep. And a windstorm came down on the lake, and they were filling with water, and were in jeopardy. And they came to Him and awoke Him, saying, “Master, Master, we are perishing!” Then He arose and rebuked the wind and the raging of the water. And they ceased, and there was a calm. But He said to them, “Where is your faith?” And they were afraid, and marveled, saying to one another, “Who can this be? For He commands even the winds and water, and they obey Him!”
The confidence in the wind could only be seen in the fact that Jesus was resting in the back of the boat. When we know that God is with us, we can find peace in any wind. Jesus has authority over the wind, but more importantly Jesus doesn’t mind resting in our windy situation. Our faith should not be in the fact that Jesus can calm the wind. Our faith should be in the fact that Jesus is resting in the back of our boat. He is resting in our lives and He trusts the direction He is guiding us.
The presence of God can give us stability in a windy world. Being in the will of God is living with the presence of God in our lives. This can give us peace in any windy day. People in the world don’t know God’s presence, thus they cannot truly know peace in a windy day. They are filled with fear on windy days and the lack of God’s presence in their lives can even invite the winds of change to terrify their hearts. When Jonah was out of the will of God, he found himself in the midst of the wind upon the sea. He was not in oneness with God and His plans; as a result he faced the wind and the storm that made even the mariners afraid. Those who know what they are doing also know the potential of destruction of wind and change. Having seen destruction in the past can make us afraid in the winds of the present day. Knowing God’s presence in our lives is more important than knowing what can or cannot happen.
Jonah 1:4, 5 But the Lord sent out a great wind on the sea, and there was a mighty tempest on the sea, so that the ship was about to be broken up. Then the mariners were afraid; and every man cried out to his god, and threw the cargo that was in the ship into the sea, to lighten the load. But Jonah had gone down into the lowest parts of the ship, had lain down, and was fast asleep.
People in the world need God’s presence. We cannot condemn them for not knowing what to do in the midst of change. We cannot condemn them when the winds of the world cause them to be out of control and circumstantially ruled. People in the world are often driven by the wind, but sons and daughters of God live lives that invite those in the world to find God’s presence in the midst of times of change.
The wind and the waves made Peter afraid when he walked on water and he began to sink, but then Jesus extended His hand to Peter and picked him up (Mk. 4:39). We can be afraid at times, but when we know that God’s presence is with us our fears are vanished.
People in the world are tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine (Eph. 4:14). We must not be like the people of the world. We are not here to condemn the world, but to show them where to keep their focus. We must focus on God’s presence in our lives, not the winds that blow around us. When we don’t trust God for the wisdom of our tomorrow we become double minded and we are tossed by the wind (Jam. 1:6). When we disconnect from God’s presence we are shaken by a might wind.
Revelation 6:13 And the stars of heaven fell to the earth, as a fig tree drops its late figs when it is shaken by a mighty wind.
When God’s presence comes into our lives we receive a wind from heaven that brings the peace of God’s presence that promises change in the world in which we live. That change is brought about by God’s presence in our lives.
Acts 2:2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting.
The people of the world are affected by the wind. They are afraid, they don’t know what is next, and they cannot find a place to settle. They are tossed to and fro by every conflicting way of life, they don’t know what to do and they are out of control – THEY ARE DISCONNECTED FROM GOD. People of God – KNOW A CONNECTION WITH GOD. They are people of love and people of love bring faith, stability, direction, peace, and freedom of heart and soul. This is the testimony of princes who rule justly in the community of God’s life. By this we can lead others to know to keep their focus on God. We are refuge from the wind, because we know God’s presence in the midst of every windy day.
Food For Thought,
Ted J. Hanson