It is doubtful if, in 1972, those attending one of Jim Cymbala's worship services in a run-down Brooklyn church imagined how generously God would pour His Spirit into their young pastor, and in the process reshape and enliven the physical and spiritual attributes of Brooklyn Tabernacle. More than a history of a church, Fresh Wind is about the dynamic power of God's Spirit to transform those who follow His leading.
Like many great books, Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire is more than the sum of its parts. The most apt description may be prophecy, as when Cymbala describes how most churches today are like the lukewarm Laodicean church spoken of in Revelation. However, mixed with the chastisement is exhortation.
Cymbala refers to the great heroes of the Bible, from Abraham, Deborah, Joshua and others we would recognize to Helez, Sibbecai, Ahiam—individuals we would most likely not know. Listed in 1 Chronicles 11, these servants of God are described as David’s mighty men. They, together with all Israel, gave David’s rule strong support to extend it over the whole land, as the Lord had promised (verse 10).
As he tells his story, you can hear the Holy Spirit speaking to the Church today. Cymbala encourages us to engage God daily, and bring Christ's vitality to wherever the world's lifeless status quo exists, especially if it is found in Christ's Church. If readers are not careful, Fresh Wind may transform them from a zombie-like passivity into a people alive with God’s Spirit, consciously choosing to glorify our Father above all else.