This is post number four on The Spirit Led Life…..
A life that is lived joyfully outward………
Here is the deal. The Holy Spirit came into the Church over two thousand years ago on the day of Pentecost. The whole account of what happened when He came- (and yes- the Holy Spirit is a “HE” not an “IT”- He is a person-the third person of the Trinity) is described in The Acts of the Apostles. The Holy Spirit came to empower believers in Christ to live the Christian life and to bring others the Good News of the Gospel. The Holy Spirit is Christ working in the world through us. I’m going to repeat that- The Holy Spirit is Christ working in the world through us. We are Christ’s hands and feet in this world. We can be “Jesus with skin on” in a very needy world.
In the Apostle Paul’s first letter to the Church in Corinth he reminds believers that each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good.(12:7)
The gifts of the Spirit are not given to us for our own personal use but for the benefit of the people of God, the Church – that is the outward part.
Jesus told His disciples that the Holy Spirit would come when He had gone home to be with His Father. “And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another, Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.” (John 14:17-18)
The Holy Spirit is the One who dwells in believers and empowers them to live the Christian life. The Holy Spirit convicts us of sin and brings us on the journey inward. The Holy Spirit is the Sprit of God crying out in us to worship and brings us to look worshipfully upward. The Holy Spirit inside of us enables us to live our life joyfully outward.
Many people focus on Pentecost as the story of speaking in tongues. Don’t get me wrong – that was a pretty awesome and miraculous display, but do you know what I think is an even more miraculous display?
Let’s read on a little further in the Acts of the Apostles…..
(Chapter 2: 42-47)
“All the believers devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching, and to fellowship, and to sharing in meals (including the Lord’s Supper), and to prayer.
A deep sense of awe came over them all, and the apostles performed many miraculous signs and wonders. And all the believers met together in one place and shared everything they had. They sold their property and possessions and shared the money with those in need. They worshiped together at the Temple each day, met in homes for the Lord’s Supper, and shared their meals with great joy and generosity- all the while praising God and enjoying the goodwill of all the people. And each day the Lord added to their fellowship those who were being saved.”
To me friends, this is an even greater miracle. Nobody was poor. Everyone gave to all who had need. They met often with joy. They loved each other with abandon. These people in the early Church lived lives that were totally led by the Spirit of God……
Are we there yet?
Am I there yet?
Am I journeying inward?
Am I looking worshipfully upward?
Am I living joyfully outward?
Do you have witness within yourself?
Does the Spirit of God bear witness with your Spirit that you are a child of God?
My prayer today is that all of us will take time to answer each of these questions for ourselves.