MANNA MUSIC "Sweet, Sweet Spirit"


Sweet, Sweet Spirit, Doris Akers’ best-loved song, has an interesting history.  “One night,” Doris says, “as I prayed with my choir, I felt that they were not ready for the service as they couldn’t seem to settle down.  So I said to them, “Now you know that you’re not prayed through:  let’s pray again.”  And we did.  The Holy Spirit came down in a powerful way, and when I finished praying, lost in that powerful Presence, I heard myself saying, “There’s a sweet, sweet Spirit in this place.”  Immediately, in the back of my mind I thought, “That’s a terrific title:  I wish I had time to write a song about that.”  But the pastor had already begun holding the service, waiting for the choir to come in.  I had sent word to him.  “We’ll be there as soon as I can get them so the Lord can use them.”


“Now, if I don’t write down a song immediately when it comes, or at least scribble some notes of some kind, I’ll forget it:  the “inspiration” seems to dissipate and be gone forever.  I had a great feeling of regret that there was no time to jot something down, especially as I had felt so strongly that it could be a great song.  But I thought, “Well, that’s that, and I may as well forget it.”


“The next morning when I awakened, the song was going over and over in my head.  I couldn’t believe it, for as I have said, that was not usually my way.  It was as if the Lord, not wanting to let it go, had determined to keep giving it to me until I could get it on paper.  There’s another unique thing about this song.  For some years after it was published, I used it with my choir many times, but we seemed to be the only ones interested in singing it, and the sheet music just sat on the shelves, gathering dust.  Then, in God’s time, someone heard it and recorded it, and in almost no time it was being heard everywhere.  I say this for the encouragement of those who sometimes wonder why God seems not to bless their music or ministry as they feel He should.  God has His own time-plan, and He wants us to trust Him to know the best answers to “why” and “when” and “how”.