Thursday, August 27, 2009

Living in the Spirit

I can remember, as a young person, sitting in Sunday School during a lesson which centered around the Holy Spirit. I couldn’t help wondering what on earth the teacher was trying to say and why she seemed so confused. If you’re like I was, as a new Christian, you accepted on faith what you read in God’s word -- that the Holy Spirit came to reside inside a child of God. You knew there was a change in you since you were saved and you were aware of the Lord’s presence in your life, yet there seemed to be a vague understanding of the Holy Spirit. I can remember wanting to understand more clearly but the King James Version of the Bible is a studious read for a small child, and most adults including my Sunday School teacher veered away from what appeared to be a difficult subject. I can also remember not discussing the Holy Spirit much in Church services because members seemed to associate it with the “charismatic movement.” It seemed as though it was understood that since we could pray directly to God and read our Bible for life’s instruction, there was no reason to mention or place any value on the Holy Spirit’s indwelling within us. I ask you. How sad is that? Was it explained more clearly when you became a child of God? Were you taught to live in the Spirit or simply acknowledge and accept His presence within you?

Jesus said, “If anyone loves me, he will obey my teaching. My Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him. He who does not love me will not obey my teaching. These words you hear are not my own; they belong to the Father who sent me. All this I have spoken while still with you. But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.” John 14:23-26

We can go through life as a child of God, understanding who the Holy Spirit is and why He resides within us or we can simply and vaguely accept it because He is part of the Holy Trinity…the Three in One…Father, Son and the Holy Spirit. Even understanding who He is doesn’t mean we live in the Spirit. The best and simplest way to explain it is…within a child of God there is a door and the Holy Spirit is behind the closed door. We’re aware He’s there but we either open the door and include Him or we don’t. We either ask Him for direction and guidance in everything or we don’t. We both conduct our self and treat our body pleasingly, inviting His presence or we don’t. The more we go about our daily life not living in the presence of the Holy Spirit’s existence within us, the more we keep the door closed and the more we veer from God and His teachings. Back to square one…how does Jesus know we love Him? We obey His teachings…we eagerly keep the door open and anticipate the presence of the Holy Spirit so He will teach us “all things” and will remind us of “everything” Jesus has said in the Father’s name.

I’ve listened to fellow Christians in distress, saying they felt as though their prayers were not getting any higher than the ceiling. Rest assured in the fact that God hears your prayers. He even knows the moaning of your heart when there are no accompanying words. You should never base your relationship with the Father on your circumstances or feelings. Instead ask why you feel the way you do and examine your heart. If you’re not living intentionally in the Holy Spirit, then you are attempting life on your own...and you are doomed. I once heard a pastor use the acronym, L – I – F – E …Living Intentionally For Eternity. In other words, we have to “will” to do it right. We have to desire a Holy life and only the one who perseveres and wants to live a Holy life will live it. It requires a very humble and knowledgeable desire to delve into God’s word and focus on God through the Holy Spirit. It’s more than being able to quote God's word and more than having a book of rules and regulations to do right. It's impossible without yielding your body to the Holy Spirit…yes, both mind and body. As Christians we are blessed by our Father and have the Holy Spirit dwelling within us and we may receive all the blessings our Father has in store for us.

“Remain in me, and I will remain in you.” John 15:4

I remain captured in His reflection,

1 comment:

Leah said...

Ah, so glad there is a comment section. Love, LOVE the look of your blog. Love it.

Beautiful post. Holy Spirit was always one of those topics that no one really understood or wanted to talk about. He was just a vague part of the Trinity, which is unfortunate because He is so very GOD.

Thanks for a thought provoking post.

Leah