I first became fully aware of the Holy Spirit when I was in college. Soon after I accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior I began hearing talk about spiritual gifts, especially the gift of tongues. I was curious, so I went to a couple of meetings where these supernatural events were being discussed. And indeed, I found that the Holy Spirit was alive, active, and giving out gifts!
That experience was back in the early 1970’s but it taught me not to be afraid of the work of the Holy Spirit, but rather to embrace it. After all, as Pastor Rob reminded us in his message, “the Holy Spirit is God.” He desires a relationship with us! And of the three persons in the Trinity (Father, Son and Holy Spirit) he is the one called the “Counselor” – the one who will “convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgement…” (John 16:8).
But there’s another title that applies to the Holy Spirit, the one Jesus identified as the “Spirit of truth” (John 16:13-14). In a world that would rather believe there is no absolute truth, it’s the work of the Holy Spirit to say otherwise. “He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is to come,” Jesus said.
I sensed the Holy Spirit speaking to me, in fact, just this past Sunday in our Worship service. I’ve come to know his voice, and when he says something right out of the Bible, I know enough to listen closely. He reminded me that “the eyes of the Lord range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him” (2 Chron. 16:9). So I did a little word study, and also found 1 Peter 3:12: “For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and his ears are attentive to their prayer, but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.” Now, I don’t know about you, but that kind of truth from the Holy Spirit lights my fire!
“We cannot do life on our own,” Pastor Rob told us, and followed that thought with an admonishment to think of the Holy Spirit as a “person” – not a “force” and not an “It.” Today, more than ever, we need the counsel, comfort and truth that the Holy Spirit supplies. And if he tosses in a few supernatural gifts –well, that would be great, too!