The three biblical symbols for the Spirit at work are the dove who sat on Jesus’ shoulder at his baptism, and the tongues of fire and rushing wind at Pentecost. Jesus described the wind as unpredictable. Consider the following interpretation of what those symbols represented.
The tongues of fire suggest energy, the kind associated with heavy work that flushes the face and increases the heartbeat, like being on fire for the Lord. The unpredictable wind is the Spirit bringing unexpected changes into lives and relationship.
I think of the Spirit as a dove sitting on my shoulder whispering godly thoughts as my day goes on. I do have ongoing conversations about what to do a specific situation, especially whether to speak my mind or deny myself. I identify many tempting thoughts as coming from the Enemy whispering into my other ear. I see these thoughts reflecting what Luther described as daily washing away our old nature and letting the new person come forth—the process of the Spirit changing me little by little, with the occasional “a-ha” insight that changes my thinking and reactions.
Many call this conversational prayer, as distinct from formal prayer. They usually consider conversational prayer to be the essence of the prayer relationship with God. It approaches what Paul from his experience described as “Be joyful always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances (1 Thessalonians 5:16). The book I have written a book on that distinction and how individuals experience it is How the Spirit Shapes Prayer (2017).Read More