It is often said that March is either supposed to come in as a lion and go out as a lamb, or else come in as lamb and go out as a lion. This year, it may well come in as a lamb, turn into a lion, and then revert to a lamb, as the middle of the month has been quite gusty. In fact, the winds today were whipping through an impressive speed of 17 miles per hour.
At first glance, that may not sound like much; but trust me, it is. As I went walking this afternoon, I found myself facing the full force of such a headwind. Each successive step required more than the average expenditure of energy just to make progress.
The good news, however, is that I only faced this difficulty up until halfway through my journey. Once I got out to the lake, turned around, and began my return journey, I quickly found that what had previously been a difficult headwind soon became a benevolent tailwind.
I do not necessarily know how much longer it had taken me to get to the midway point of my walk; but I am quite confident that I made up for it on the return trip. Suffice it to say that with a 17 mph tailwind, I found myself being borne swiftly along with each passing step.
Not surprisingly, over the course of an hour’s walk, I spent a good deal of time reflecting on these things. The thoughts I then had now comprise the remainder of my blog post.
It strikes me that the wind is a good metaphor of how we move through life. By this I mean that there are clearly times when we each face unfavorable winds; just as there are times when we each enjoy favorable ones. And I myself am living proof of this principle.
You see, there have been many times in my life when I have had to work my way forward against forceful opposition. In these times, it can be said that the prevailing winds were against me; and that I have had to fight vigorously for each and every inch of ground gained.
Whether it was passing the fourth grade, or beating out the competition for a job opening, or winning my would-be wife’s favor over other possible suitors, I literally cannot count the number of times I have had to face and then overcome opposition. In such times, the key to success has been little more than perseverance.
At other times in life, such as breezing through algebra in the ninth grade, successfully fairing in a newly landed job position, or else enjoying the beautiful wife of my youth, the winds of life have clearly been favorable for me.
Now, obviously, given the option, I would have always chosen the latter. After all, who would not prefer to go through life with little or no difficulty? But the truth is that I know in my heart that it was most often those times when I faced opposition that I truly grew and/or excelled. And surely, this was of God!
Remember that the same Lord Who sent a strong wind to deliver Moses and his fellow Israelites from Pharaoh and his army at the parting of the Red Sea also sent a strong wind against the Mediterranean Sea to buffet a little ship containing the disobedient and unfaithful prophet Jonah. In both cases, of course, God had the best interest of His chosen servant at heart.
But the point is that, even if it was for differing purposes, both Moses and Jonah came up against prevailing winds. So, let’s face it, the winds of opposition, whenever we encounter them, may very well be God-ordained!
After all, calm seas never made for skilled sailors! It is only when we face some form of resistance that we grow stronger. Ask any weightlifter! It is only as we struggle that we succeed. Ask any wrestler! And it is only as we struggle and succeed that we grow more skillful, and more confident in the process! Ask any Christian!
I once read that a ship in a harbor is safe; but that this is not what ships were made for. So pray not for a life free of difficulty; but rather for the strength to overcome whatever difficulty may come your way! You will be much better off for it in the long run. And that, my friends, is no bluster!
SCRIPTURAL BASIS: https://bible.knowing-jesus.com/topics/Wind.
WINNEH THE POOH MOVIE: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0063819/;
NOTE: The FOX Theatre is, of course, a world famous downtown Atlanta landmark, second only in significance to the nearby Loews' Grand Theatre, where GONE WITH THE WIND premiered in 1939. At the time, however, I must confess that, like any red-blooded American boy, I was far less focused on either GONE WITH THE WIND or WINNIE THE POOH and far more focused on the 1968 release of PLANET OF THE APES (starring Charlton Heston) as provocatively advertised on all the posters out in the foyer!