Cursing at the Wind – reprise

– Andy Wade –

Inconsistent, blowing here, there, never resting in its determination to bring chaos,. So are the winds that blow through my garden sanctuary this summer.

I’m sick of it!

Where is rest, where is peace, when gusts randomly wreak havoc throughout the yard? Even just the noise becomes an irritation.

Wind swept treeThese are the winds that make Hood River famous for kiteboarding and windsurfing. These are the winds that blew during my childhood as I sailed with my dad on the first sailboat in the area, 45 years ago.

These same winds have revitalized our Columbia River Gorge community, attracting tourists from around the globe to hold fast as they’re pushed and pulled by this unseen force through the turbulent whitecaps of the Columbia River.

And yet, like a dripping faucet at night, this wind disrupts my psyche, driving my contemplative nature to seek shelter deep underground, leaving me distracted and annoyed.

There is nothing more common, more ordinary, about Hood River than the wind. I know this. I grew up with this. There’s a reason the trees on the west side of town have branches only on the east side of their trunks. So why am I complaining? Why am I so disturbed by this constant wind?

“All is vanity, a chasing after the wind.” So Koholeth, speaker in Ecclesiastes, repeats over and over again. Perhaps this describes me. Maybe, just maybe, I’ve been chasing after the wind rather than allowing it to catch me up in its consuming dance.

I would venture to guess that there’s a deeper wind blowing, one that disturbs my soul and, if allowed, can stir my imagination.

“The wind blows where it chooses, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.” (Jn. 3:8)

What is that whirlwind in my soul? Uncertainty? Change? Turmoil? Like a sudden gust down one of the valleys of life, it knocks me sideways. But what if, like the sailor, the kite-boarder or the windsurfer, I embraced the wind? Rather than fighting it or allowing it to blow me totally off balance, what if I opened myself up to it, allowing it to sweep me up to soar in the sky?

The wind. So ordinary yet with so much to teach me. It blows through and shouts, “Let go and rise on the winds! Let imagination and creativity be unleashed!”

Feet back on the ground, I ask myself, “Where am I hunkering down, trying to resist the wind of God? In what ways have I accepted ‘the way things are’ and not allowed God to move me onto the great things, things even beyond my own imagination?” (Eph. 3:20)

I invite you to consider these questions. And as you think about that, watch this video of one young man from Malawi – how he captured the wind! And be inspired!