This spring I left my half-sick husband home with our five young kids for five days and drove to a writer’s conference. My life was a mess at home — especially the laundry room. Along with the five children, I left six chicks (who can fly) in a galvanized metal horse trough in the middle of my laundry room. They were hopping out and pooping everywhere! We needed to cover that thing with chicken wire like yesterday, but here I was scampering off to a writer’s conference.
I was a newbie with about half a minute to write, and I headed to the conference with no business cards, an outdated blog, and some half-written stories to share. Doubts swirled in my mind as I drove.
What was I thinking? Why was I going? Why did I think I somehow had time for this? Who was I to call myself a writer, let alone attend a conference where people share their book proposals over coffee and sit in workshops about building their platform?
At the conference, I saw others moving forward in their writing careers and wondered when that would be me. All my life I had loved to write, wanted to write, and now that I had finally decided to pursue it, my life was fuller than it had ever been.
When God? How God? I just don’t see. I want to be like the others, moving forward, making progress, but here I sit and struggle to put two sentences together.
I drove home a few days later from the conference, and God lifted my eyes to the hills. There I saw them: windmills. They were standing tall and white on the rolling green hills. (The technical term is a wind turbine, but that sounds like way too much of an engineering term for a girl scared of math, so I’m going to call them windmills, okay? Giant, pointy, space-like windmills. You know what I am talking about.)
I watched their sharp tines roll through the air like a giant in slow motion three hundred feet high. As I drove and gawked, I noticed some of them stood completely still; not all of them were moving. I wondered how this could be since they were all in the same area. I suppose there’s more scary math and engineering involved here, too. I suppose it depends on the direction of the wind, the speed of the wind, and the placement of the windmill.
Then God spoke to my heart, “You are like that windmill standing still. You may not be moving now, but when I’m ready to blow My wind, you will. Sit tight and wait for me.”
It’s easy to look around and see the progress others are making in their careers, their families, or their bank accounts and feel like our lives just aren’t moving fast enough, like we are standing still in a field of whirling windmills. But the good news is we are still windmills, and we were built to convert wind into valuable energy, energy that creates electricity. However, whether or not our blades move to generate that electricity isn’t up to us; it’s left to the wind.
Psalm 78:26 says, “He let loose the east wind from the heavens and by His power made the south wind blow.” God is in charge of the winds. He makes them blow, and He makes them stop. Just like He did with those frightened “faithless” disciples in a fishing boat 2,000 years ago. I so often forget.
Yes, of course, we are to work toward our goals, but it is only by His power at work within us and around us that we are able to accomplish anything whatsoever. Just like the windmill depends on the wind, we depend on God.
So, I’m not going to worry about being a windmill standing still. My movement, or lack thereof, doesn’t make me any less of one. I’m a windmill, and I’ve been created and built for a purpose. I just have to be still and wait for the wind to blow.Leave a Comment
Michele Morin says
I’m still grinning about the chickens in your laundry room, but am so thankful for this reminder that this present moment is just a snap shot. Only God knows what He will do with the fruit of today’s obedience. I’ll be taking this truth forward into this busy day when my writing windmill will be standing still.
Brooke Frick says
I’m so glad to hear this! Yes thankfully our laundry room isn’t full of chicks anymore! ☺️ I’m also glad this resonated with you!
Bev @ Walking Well With God says
I was on a roll with my writing (finally at the age of 50). I had regularly weekly blog posts for five years and some published material, but God said, “I need you over here to start a Christian school for orphans in the Middle East.” “Say what??” was my response. Since that time, writing has had to take a back seat, but I still have a book in me and I’ll be attending a writer’s conference in the fall. My windmill is turning but it’s just not focused on writing in this season. It might sound cliche, but to everything there is a season under heaven, and it’s up to me to submit to God’s will for my life. He knows when the timing will be perfect. I am encouraged that some of the greatest role models in the Bible didn’t begin their ministries until well into their senior years. Everything doesn’t have to be done today….curious as to what shape your house and chicks were in when you returned home?? Hold onto the dream….
You are so right Bev!! I haven’t totally learned that lesson but I’ve been thinking of that a lot lately…that everything doesn’t have to be done now. There really is a season for everything. I’m so glad for what God is doing in and through you! Keep moving forward and following Him! Blessings! ❤️
Oh and I was scared to walk in my front door too! Ha! BUT another reason my husband is amazing is he cleaned the house and it was all nice when I got home. ❤️
Love this post, it speaks to my season of waiting right now. God will move or blow my turbine into action in his own good time! You are 100 percent right that with his power within us and around us, without him we cannot accomplish anything!
Jas, like you I am in a season of waiting. Your calm acceptance of this stage in life really speaks to me and encourages me to do my best to find the same acceptance. Thank you!
I’m so glad! Work hard, obey God, and trust Him right? I’ll be praying for you to continue to follow His lead!
Yes! It’s a process isn’t it?
Oh whoops! Meant to respond up here but wrote it down below!
Kerry L Fountain says
After too much time procrastinating (because I don’t like change), I am in the midst changes in order to embrace God’s call from one ministry area to another. I know the big picture, but can’t yet see the details. Great reminder that he has placed me here for his purpose and I need only obey and wait on him.
So glad to hear that! He is so good and patient with us is he not? Blessings on your journey of work and waiting.
I’m in awe that you can write taking care of 5 kiddos and your sweet supportive husband!! Bless him!
You have plenty to write about with your own family and some animals to boot! I’m praying for y’all and love windmills tho I think rainbow colors would be cool up on those hills! Happy Wednesday:)
Thank you! Yes my husband is an all-star! Couldn’t pursue this without him!! ❤️
awesome devotional – many thanks!!
Thank you for reading Jessica! ❤️
Becky Beresford says
Thank you so much Brooke!
I really connected with your story… prob because I’m a writer myself and this month I’m attending two writing conferences for the first time! It’s intimidating and scary and good… and it’s so easy to compare ourselves to each other. But at the last one I went to the speakers really encouraged us to know that God has each of us where we are for a reason and He’s gifted each of us with a unique and beautiful voice to tell our story like no one else can! And the opportunities are endless because He is always calling more laborers out into the field (or windmill field ;). That was so refreshing to my heart and I hope it encourages you as well.
You are a rockstar (I’m raising a tiny army myself, but you have chickens too!! Lol). I admire you. Keep pursuing your dreams and trusting Jesus for the perfect wind 🙂
God’s best to you,
Thank you Becky!! Praying for your writing journey too!! You are so right! It’s scary and intimidating and the chance of “failure” is embarrassing, but the risk of not doing the thing God created you for is worse! I’m glad we are on the journey together!
Tina Storms says
Thank you for this post–enjoyed what you shared so much (I, too, got a big smile regarding the chicks…so funny until someone has to clean up their mess…LOL!) What a blessing to contemplate and Praise God for “his power”! Have a blessed day!
Thank you!! Haha…yes all fun and games until they poop in your laundry room. We did move them outside to the coop shortly after! Phew!
Love this wind analogy…..and I do believe Gods wind is blowing for you…..take heart , keep writing we want to hear more!
Thank you Anne! ❤️ In his time, right?
VALERIE BRUCE says
Thank you Brooke, i am surrounded by as you say windmills. Only difference now is im gonna see them in a whole other way..God bless you…
I’m so glad it helps you see them differently. I didn’t put this into words in this post, but yes it’s not that we are competing against one another…we are all built for a purpose, God just uses us at different times and in different ways! May your blades start turning soon…in God’s time!
Thank you for encouraging through this wonderful message and through your experience.
Thank you Elvira!
tara royer steele says
so good. exactly what i needed to hear. thank you for putting his actions in your life into words!
I’m so glad it encouraged you! ❤️
Patricia Raybon says
Brooke, what a beautiful illustration of God’s empowering help in our insufficiency. Thanks so much for writing this and sharing. I love this piece and I pray God’s blessings on your writing life and ministry. Onward in His Spirit! Kindly in Christ, Patricia
Thank you so much Patricia!! Thank you for reading! And thank you for your prayers! So much appreciated! the struggle is real! Haha
Thank you, for this great reminder.
Looking at the standstill moments in life, are never mint to be lost, but a time of preparation.
“I’m a windmill, and I’ve been created and built for a purpose. I just have to be still and wait for the wind to blow.”
“You may not be moving now, but when I’m ready to blow My wind, you will. Sit tight and wait for me.”
Just like the windmill depends on the wind, we depend on God.
I’m glad you could relate Tonya! God is so good.
Good reminder of the surrendered life. I love the analogy….I’m a windmill, I’m made to work, but also called to obediently wait on His power.
Thanks for sharing.
Thank you for reading! ❤️
Susan Daugherty says
Thank you so much for the reminder to wait on Him and run our own race. Just the words I needed today! It looks to me like your blades are turning.
Thank you!! I am so glad this encouraged you today! And thank you…yes bit by bit! I am grateful for any opportunity to write! ❤️
Love this, Brooke. ♥ — And, I giggled that you’re “scared of math.” Me too, sister. hehe 🙂
Haha! Yesss! Non-math people unite!!
Waiting seems to be a common theme. I totally understand that feeling. I shut down after attending a writers conference and realizing that I was anything but a writer. I love to read more. Writing, not so much. And that was a devastating realization after having a dream for so many years. I tried to hang on for a little longer, but now realize my role is elsewhere. Maybe it will be rekindled later, but I have resigned myself to tending to the tasks in front of me. I really feel like one of those still windmills. Hoping to get the signal to start again one of these years…
I hope so too shauna! Either way, we know that God has good plans for us..even if they look different than what we envisioned! ❤️ Praying you find His purpose while you wait!
Becky Keife says
Brooke! What a joy it is to see your words here on (in)courage today! I love how tender God is, how He meets us, speaks to us in just the way our hearts need to hear.
I’m so glad you said a crazy yes to that conference. Surely the wind is coming. In fact, it’s already moving in your life — I can feel it! xx
Aw thank you Becky!! Thanks so much for your encouragement along the way! God is so good and gentle with us! ❤️
Thank you, I really needed this message today. It’s not my fault if the wind isn’t blowing! I know it will come.
Yes exactly!! It takes the pressure off! Yes we can work towards our goals, but even so, it’s not in our control!
I see movement. For years I have struggled with what in the world am I suppose to be doing. I wanted so much more than what was meant for me. I asked God to land me where I need to land. He is showing me every day that He needs someone to do the small stuff.
Yes! I pray He keeps speaking to you where you are now!
Patti Blount says
I think you are the perfect devotional writer. You have a way of taking ordinary things, and the real things in life, and hear God through them, writing in such a personal and friendly way to communicate them to others. Like the Parables. Congratulations on your first piece!!! I’ve always enjoyed being blessed by your writing. Blow, Spirit, blow!!!!
Thank you Patti! Love you! You’ve always been so encouraging to me!!
Pearl Allard says
Brooke, this is wonderful! May we be ready when the wind does blow! Thank you.
Amen! Thank you!
Kathy Cheek says
In the life and dreams of a writer, God’s timing and ways are on full display calling us to trust in an arena that is challenging and uncertain, but so worth it! I just turned 60 and my first book comes out this fall and I know this was the timing and season of God’s plan and purpose for me.
I hope that encourages you today! The age part may not, but I didn’t start writing until my girls were way up in the school years.
Enjoyed every word you shared with us…
Oh gosh kathy this is encouraging!! Congrats to you on the book that is super exciting! Yes all is God’s time!
Beth Williams says
Congratulations on the book! I know that is every writer’s dream. I pray God continues to bless you immensely!
I can visualize the wind turbine standing still waiting for the wind to give it a nudge. And after some tumultuous times, I’m also standing still to wait for God’s (gentle) nudge. Thank-you for creating this piece to share with us, I really enjoyed it.
Have a blessed day all,
Thank you Penny!! Praying for you in your season of waiting! It’s a comfort to know no matter what He is in control!
Brooke, I was so in need of this encouragement today (an empty nest after 21 years has me looking for full-time work…with no bites yet) but I find that I want to give YOU encouragement instead.
Don’t stop writing.
Your style is so easy to read.
Your humor evident.
Your faith heartfelt.
Thank you for submitting this post to (in)courage (and CONGRATS for it being accepted).
That still small voice inside you is shining through. 🙂
Oh my goodness Cynthia thank YOU! ❤️ I am encouraged and I know God will use what I can give for His purposes and that makes me really happy!! I’ll be praying for your search! It’s hard to imagine being an empty nester now, but I know it will be here before I know it! Cherish the good in every season right? Hugs!! ☺️
Rebecca Jones says
I was remembering going to a writer’s class a long time ago yesterday. And here I am now blogging and loaded with things to say. We need that gentle breeze of the windmill, to sail us along but it might come with a gust first. I was not good at math either, if I’d known more about God back then I might have learned.
That’s wonderful Rebecca! Keep on writing!!
Oh my. What a beautiful picture of where our lives are when we think God has forgotten about us. I have been struggling with my online store. Close? Stay open one more month? With no sales yet, but tons of “likes and comments” on Instagram, it can be quite frustrating. Not to mention watching everyone else succeeding at what I want to be doing. I haven’t received my memo from Heaven with clear instructions, but maybe I have with your analogy. A few weeks ago I felt I needed to “cease striving”. It’s a different version of “be still”. I will remain like the still windmills for now.
I’m so glad God is encouraging you with this! Life is so much about trusting and waiting and leaning into God’s purposes and His timing. Hugs to you!
Carrie Dennis says
I love this Brooke. I can’t wait for your next post. I could read your writings all day!
Thank you so much friend!!
Patrick Creehan says
This is exactly what I needed today. Thank you! Looks like your tines are spinning now! And, hey, math isn’t THAT scary! 😉
Um yes Patrick…math IS scary!! but thank you! I’m glad it resonated with you. Hope you and the family are well!! hugs!
Joey Rudder says
Oh my goodness. Thank you, Brooke. This totally blessed me, had me in tears, and brought me a sigh of relief all at the same time. I’m a visual person, and the image of the windmill standing still while others are moving, well, that’s going to bring me peace for a looooong time. I’ve been waiting on God, for Him to bring His wind. But as you beautifully wrote, “So, I’m not going to worry about being a windmill standing still. My movement, or lack thereof, doesn’t make me any less of one. I’m a windmill, and I’ve been created and built for a purpose. I just have to be still and wait for the wind to blow.”
From one standing-still windmill to another, thank you!! (And by the way, your writing is AMAZING!!) Blessings to you and your family!
Aw thank you! ❤️ I’m so glad you have a visual to remember. I’m a visual person as well. I love how God speaks to us right where we are with analogies we can see and hear and take to heart. Blessings on your journey! It isn’t always easy, but He is good and has good in store!
Beth Williams says
Waiting is hard. I am not a patient person. Want to know God’s will for my life now. Just like the windmill depends on the wind, we depend on God to get us moving in His timing. This world asks what are you waiting for get moving-do something. God plans are very different from the world’s & even ours. He has us right where He wants us for this season of our lives. Sometimes our plans & dreams take a back seat to what He wants & knows is important now. One thing I have learned is that God allowed many people in the Bible to do great things…later in their lives. Sarah had children in her 90s & Noah was 600 years old when he finished the ark. That proves that God’s timing is perfect. He knows the plans He has for us.