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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: The Church (12/06/07)

TITLE: When the Wind Blows
By Catrina Bradley


All of the Christians have gone home. The church sits empty, save for dust motes floating in multicolored shafts of moonlight, spiders weaving new webs to replace those cleared away by the custodian, and the silent Spirit Who hovers majestically, lingering long after the bodies of the Church have departed.

He ponders the season of His confinement to the Holy of Holies. And when He only spoke to the Father’s chosen. The people had craved Him, but their time had not yet come.

He laughs with delight at His freedom in this age of Grace. To be able to be present with all of His children. To be summoned by a prayer. To be heralded and wrought to a frenzy by the voices of His worshippers raised in praise of His Name. To fill His children with Himself, and then go with them into the world.

He had flown with abandon this morning, floating, swirling, from one believer to another, being lifted to the rafters on a joyful noise, then descending in an invisible cloud to envelop His children in His presence. He filled the surrendered mind and heart of Pastor Beck, who stood surrounded by a Heavenly host called forth by the army of prayer warriors he shepherded.

The pastor’s words were pure Word; the Son was preached today. And worshipped, and loved, and lifted up. The Name of Jesus Christ was exalted, and the Father was well pleased. The Spirit sprang into abundance, and the Church’s faith came full circle.

The Trinity was in motion.

The prayers of the righteous touched His Heart, and He bestowed blessings upon His children. Some were discouraged by seemingly unanswered prayers. The blessings He bestowed were not always what was wished for, or what His children deemed best, but instead what was needed for the Father’s plan to unfold.

Smiling, cheerful Mrs. Granger cried out from a heart buried beneath a façade of contentment for the restoration of her failed marriage.

The Spirit was bereaved and grieved with her, but instead of granting her plea, He calmed His child and spoke to the hearts of three of her Sunday School classmates, urging them to reach out in love, comfort, and support.

Young Natalie knelt at the altar to pray as she had every Sunday since her baptism. She wanted to make sure everyone saw how serious she was about her decision to follow Christ. But all the Spirit heard was a clanging gong.

He hovered about her, and almost breached the wall of self separating them. He simultaneously nudged and inspired five of her friends to think of her and lift her to the Father. She was being convicted, and one day soon would see, hear, and finally surrender to the Truth.

He inhabited the music and spoke through the words of “Just as I am” to the Baileys as they communed with their Savior through worship. They had spent the past nine months church hopping, unable or unwilling make a commitment. As Gabrielle sang “I come..” and turned to her husband, he echoed, “I come.” They joined hands and hastened to the pastor, who stood smiling at the altar.

The Spirit thrilled to hear the Name spoken, and their confession of faith in the Lordship of Jesus Christ sent Him soaring. When Gabrielle and Dan stood before their new family, His Spirit of love bloomed as the congregation welcomed their new brother and sister.

Now, hours later, here in the stillness of the shadowy church and along the tendrils of Love snaking from heart to heart through the Body, the Spirit continues His work.

Natalie’s phone rings, and she accepts an invitation to go with a few girls to the soup kitchen tomorrow night. The Women’s Sunday School teacher takes out her best stationary and pens a welcoming and encouraging note to the Baileys. The aroma of baking fills more than one kitchen and text messages fly as His daughters finalize plans for a single ladies’ tea, making sure to include the newly single Mrs. Granger on the invitation list. Intercessory prayers pour through Him to the Father in the name of the Son.

The Church is stronger today than yesterday, and will be stronger still tomorrow, as the Spirit prepares them for the return of the Son.

The opinions expressed by authors may not necessarily reflect the opinion of FaithWriters.com.
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This article has been read 1301 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Joanne Sher 12/13/07
Your descriptions are so vivid they are practically tactile. This gives me chills whenever I read it.
Ann Renae Hair12/14/07
MAJOR GOOSEBUMPS! What more can I say?
Dee Yoder 12/16/07
I love to read stories that give me a glimpse of the spiritual realm beings and how they interact with we mere mortals. Very touching!
Karen Wilber12/17/07
Love the POV and the way this piece flowed from the general to the specific and on into the lives of the churchgoers. Nicely written.
Jan Ackerson 12/18/07
Aw, phooey, Catrina...this is the piece I tried, and failed, to write.

Stunningly beautiful.
Temple Miller12/18/07
I loved the phrase, "The trinity was in motion." This is one of the most unique entries I've ever read. Wonderful interpretation!
Sally Hanan12/18/07
This was very well written. Red ink is that it seems very busy--you packed almost too much into the short piece, and I would have felt more peace on reaching the end if there weren't so many things that the Spirit touched. How is it that he can do so much and still spread peace yet when we try...???
Loren T. Lowery12/19/07
This writing truly had to be inspired by the Holy Spirit. You had the pulse of His heart and it beat throughout this beautiful piece. Grand writing, grand, grand, grand!
Sharlyn Guthrie12/19/07
I love your evidence of the Holy Spirit at work in the body through individuals, and also the indication at the end that it is a work in progress, that it will continue. THis is SO encouraging!
Sara Harricharan 12/19/07
That is in my one word impression of this lovely piece! What an awesome piece of writing, I enjoyed seeing the different views here.

RED PEN: The paragraph where the Bailey's have been church hopping, the second sentence would have a little more added if it were in its own paragraph-just a thought.
Paula Titus 12/19/07
"Now, hours later, here in the stillness of the shadowy church and along the tendrils of Love snaking from heart to heart through the Body, the Spirit continues His work." - Absolutely touching, fantastic writing.
Janice Cartwright12/19/07
At risk of gushing, your writing here is achingly beautiful, poetic actually. Such spiritual depth can only mean you have a REAL heart for the Lord and He is using you to draw others to Himself.
Betty Castleberry12/19/07
This is beautiful, full, and whole. In just a few words...I loved it.
LauraLee Shaw12/20/07
Wow! From title to end, just WOW! This is my favorite line, and I will never forget it:

The Trinity was in motion.

The very thought of it makes me tremble. In a good way.
Preacher Johnson12/20/07
When you read something and it leaves you speechless, what can you type? Catrina, this was wonderful.
Laury Hubrich 12/20/07
Cat, congratulations on a prize-winning entry, no matter the place! Great writing!
Loren T. Lowery12/20/07
Yeah and way to go! This is so derserving of placement!
God's continued blessings on your writing. See you in Masters soon, I'm sure!
Sheri Gordon12/20/07
Congratulations on your EC. This is absolutely beautiful.
LaNaye Perkins12/21/07
I love stories that describe the way the Spirit works. You did an awesome job of covering both the seen and unseen in this story. Great job my friend!
Tim George12/21/07
"Now, hours later, here in the stillness of the shadowy church and along the tendrils of Love snaking from heart to heart through the Body, the Spirit continues His work."

Now that's writing! Thanks for the great prose and message.

Joy Faire Stewart12/21/07
Congratulations on your EC win. This is one of my all-time favorites...just beautiful.
Marita Thelander 12/25/07
I "heard" a bit of chatter on the boards about your entry so I looked for it. I absolutlely loved it. Being a Pastor's wife, I could totally visualize the works of the Spirit in services past just like you wrote it.
Lesley-Anne Evans01/26/08
Holy goosebumps on the reading of your beautiful piece!!! I always look to see what the people who comment on my writing are writing, and I'm always amazed at the incredible talent in this place we visit called FW. Thanks for your comments to me, and I will look to you in the future as a writer who's style is fearlessly vulnerable and hauntingly beautiful. May God bless whomever you touch with your pen.
Lesley-Anne Evans01/26/08
ooppss... whose, not who's... it's late here :)
Liz Hoyt Eberle03/10/08
Liz Hoyt Eberle03/10/08
Oh dear. I'm so excited I clicked the wrong key! I've been away from Faithwriters for a couple of years. Imagine my delight to feel welcomed home by stumbling onto this beautiful piece. Thank you, Catrina, for trusting your words to us, the church.