O Spirit of the living God,
thou light and fire divine,
descend upon thy church once more,
and make it truly thine.
Fill it with love and joy and power,
with righteousness and peace;
till Christ shall dwell in human hearts,
and sin and sorrow cease.
Blow, wind of God! With wisdom blow
until our minds are free
from mists of error, clouds of doubt,
which blind our eyes to thee.
Burn, winged fire! Inspire our lips
with flaming love and zeal,
to preach to all thy great good news,
God's glorious commonweal.
Teach us to utter living words
of truth which all may hear,
the language all may understand
when love speaks loud and clear;
till every age and race and clime
shall blend their creeds in one,
and earth shall form one family
by whom thy will is done.
So shall we know the power of Christ
who came this world to save;
so shall we rise with him to life
which soars beyond the grave;
and earth shall win true holiness,
which makes thy children whole;
till, perfected by thee, we reach
creation's glorious goal!
These lyrics were written in the 1930’s by a man named Henry Tweedy. Music always has a way of getting to the heart and soul. When I hit shuffle on my ITunes today, a version of this song, recorded by Audrey Assad, played. It brought to mind the many revivalists out there that are hungry to see God pour out His Spirit on the masses. It reminds me of those who are hungry to see all people turn to God and live according to His Word and will. It reminds me of how so many of us long to see the Church be the church and people love one another as Jesus taught us to.
These lyrics, written so long ago, still carry such a current message. There’s a longing in the words to see transformation of hearts by the indwelling of Christ. A longing to see the Spirit heal our minds of the lies and doubts and fears that plague us. A longing to see the people of God give witness to the One who saves...for the people of God to live out the commission to share the good news of the gospel and praise the name of the Lord.
I’m struck by the third verse as it speaks to a unity of the body of Christ and the idea of how we are one family under God and was drawn to this scripture:
God—the one who made all things and for whose glory all things exist—wanted many people to be his children and share his glory. So he did what he needed to do. He made perfect the one who leads those people to salvation. He made Jesus a perfect Savior through his suffering. Jesus, the one who makes people holy, and those who are made holy are from the same family. So he is not ashamed to call them his brothers and sisters. He says, “God, I will tell my brothers and sisters about you. Before all your people I will sing your praises.” (Hebrews 2:10-12)
It’s easy to look around and see the division in the world. Race, politics, etc.
But I long for the day when God’s people stand united under His reign and stand in the knowledge of our true identity.
I long for the day when we speak “living words of truth which all may hear, the language all may understand, when love speaks loud and clear”. (Tweed) The language taught to us by God through His Son and now through His Holy Spirit. I yearn for Him to impart wisdom and understanding so that we realize our place in His family and stop striving to make a name for ourselves and trying to create our own identity apart from Him.
The struggles to be someone apart from Him will only lead to more division and despair. It’s been this way for generations.
We can read through the scriptures and see that it doesn’t work. God gives life and light to the world and sent His Son to save, heal and deliver His family. And those who believe and are saved and filled with His Spirit have a role to play. Jesus called us the salt and light (Matthew 5:13-16).
He was the example, and now we are called to step into that role with confidence and with joy.
Word of the Day:
You are the salt of the earth, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled under people’s feet.
God, we ask for wisdom and revelation as to what it means to be in Your family. We ask You to speak to our hearts in the deepest places about who we are. We ask You to heal our hearts that have been broken and longing for this familial connection with You. Fill the voids within us that are only filled by relationship with You. You are our Father - our Perfect Father - Who never leaves. Thank You, God, for calling us Your own. For making a Way for us to be grafted into Your family. For providing a place for us, now and forever.
Author: Kerri Barfield