What do you imagine when you think of the Holy Spirit? A presence that comes upon us by the flick of a magic wand, changing us into a new being in an abracadabra second? Or a gentle stirring, a loud whisper, a nudge in our conscience?
The Spirit of Christ is not magical, it is holy. It doesn’t transform us like a magic spell would. Instead, it directs us on the narrow path of life that leads us to the Father.
“But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come.” – John 16:13
The Holy Spirit works in our lives by:
Although our whole lifestyle doesn’t change in an instant, kindling God’s Spirit inside us will completely transform our perspective on life. Once you believe in Jesus, the Spirit indwells within you. But as my youth pastor said, it’s just like adding chocolate to milk–the chocolate will just sink to the bottom unless you shake it up, changing the plain milk into chocolate milk. By walking with the Spirit of Christ, and by listening and obeying to His instruction, we will become more like Jesus over time. Even Samuel as well as other prophets in the Old Testament experienced the dramatic impression the Spirit has on God’s servants.
“The Spirit of the Lord will come powerfully upon you, and you will prophesy with them; and you will be changed into a different person.” – 1 Samuel 10:6
Interceding for us.
I’m learning that I don’t have to sort my thoughts out for the Almighty God to understand me. The Spirit intercedes for us without words, but with feeling. How wonderful that our Creator understands us so intimately!
“In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans.” – Romans 8:26
Once we pray to God for forgiveness and ask for His saving grace through Jesus, the Holy Spirit puts a new lens on our life (which I’ve learned that I need to reapply it more than once!). Now we can go out into the world, trying to do God’s will according to what the Spirit guides our heart to do. Reading the Bible is a huge source of thoughts directly from the Sprit of God, who guided the individuals who wrote it.
Even if we are faced with persecution, God promises to give us the words to speak through the Holy Spirit. Not only that, but the Lord directs us, by the Spirit, to do the right thing and resist temptation. So even when we’re weak, the Spirit is always strong in us!
“I came to you in weakness with great fear and trembling. My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power, so that your faith might not rest on human wisdom, but on God’s power.” – 1 Corinthians 2:3-5
The Spirit of Christ has the power to fill our hearts with the warmth of God’s love, even when it’s initially hard for us to show that love.
Corrie Ten Boom, a Holocaust survivor, once faced a Nazi who had given his life to Christ and now wanted to shake hands with her. Unbeknownst to him, she recognized him as one of the Nazis who had dealt with her in the concentration camp. She didn’t feel any love for him, but she prayed for Jesus’ strength. Then raised her hand to shake his. Suddenly, as she shook his hand, she was filled to overflowing with love for the ex-Nazi, that could only have come from God. This is just one example of a Christian who relied on the Holy Spirit.
“And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.” – Romans 5:5
We ourselves are no exception to what the Spirit of Christ can do for us if we have even one mustard seed of faith in the Lord Jesus who saved us and calls us to a holy–not magical–life. We can now breathe new air and sing a new song that reshapes our entire lives not through spells, but through the wisest Teacher one could ask for. And through this Spirit we have the greatest gift of all–fellowship with our Heavenly Father forever and ever.