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Whirlwind, earthquake, fire, whisper

I love those “God things,” those times when He makes Himself known to us.

I Kings 19 tells about the Lord sending Elijah a strong wind, an earthquake and fire, but the Lord was not in them. He came in a gentle whisper. I encountered a similar experience.

On three different occasions I have been hit by a dust devil or whirlwind.

The first time was just after I moved from Pennsylvania back to Colorado. I was waiting on a customer at a department store. One summer day, the door opened, a whirlwind blew in and roared down my register. The customer and I stood there covered in dirt. I looked around and, to my surprise, it was business as usual. The only one who seemed to notice anything had happened was the guy who closed the door.

The next time, a friend and I were walking in the park when a whirlwind came through. We grabbed onto each other so we wouldn’t be swept off our feet. It then whirled some ducks around on a pond. Just a few yards away there were picnickers who didn’t even lose a napkin. I don’t know if they noticed the two women standing there with hair on end, laughing hysterically.

The third one was when a friend and I were kayaking on a lake. We saw the wind coming over the hill, whirling the fallen leaves around. It came on to the lake, turned, hit my friend in her kayak and then hit me in mine. We had to fish our hats out of the water. Even then, I didn’t think about God speaking to me.

A few months later my kayaking friend found a book by Wade E. Taylor, “Waterspouts of Glory.”

From the preface: “The personal attention which we receive from the Lord is comparable to a waterspout which is formed by a wind pattern that whips rain into a funnel of water, then directs it toward a singular point of destination. While the rain showers upon all, a waterspout aims a deluge upon one. If he finds within us even the slightest wish to truly, experientially know Him, He will demonstrate a singular interest in us.”

When He, “demonstrates a singular interest in us,” we may be the only ones who notice, at first. Like being hit with a whirlwind, He occupies our full attention, but it may be business as usual, even with those closest to us. And like my experiences with the whirlwind, our relationship with God progresses. We come to Him burdened, our lives dry and dusty, like my customer and I standing in the dust. We progress to an enjoyable connection with Him, like my friend and I in the park. Then he drenches us with an intense, fulfilling relationship, like my friend and I on the lake. Let us listen for His whisper.

“Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake came a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper.” I Kings 19:11, 12

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