I love God with all of my heart. I have absolutely no problem turning my life over to Jesus for His use. But honestly, the third person of the Trinity, the Holy Spirit, has always been a mystery to me. I guess I can wrap my mind around God as Heavenly Father and Jesus as Perfect Sacrifice, but the Holy Spirit has always been harder for me to grasp.
Recently, both in my Bible study time and through a book that I’m reading about the Holy Spirit, I have been seeing more and more of what scripture says about the Holy Spirit and His function in our lives. Turns out, He’s just as awesome as His counterparts.
Before I really begin, I feel like I need to remind you that I am not a theologian. I have no formal education in this subject matter. These are just the musings of a woman who is enthralled with the intricacies of her relationship with a holy God who reveals Himself more to her every day.
Now, where was I? Oh yes, Father, Son and…
The more I read about the Holy Spirit, the more I realize that He is our bridge to God. God is…well, everything…but in light of the Trinity, I usually think of Him as Creator. He gave us everything. Jesus, then, is the Way, the Truth and the Life. He is the one that made it possible for us to be worthy to commune with a holy God. So, the Holy Spirit is how we understand God’s word, communicate with Him in prayer and have His presence constantly in our lives.
The Holy Spirit, in fact, is how I can even write that last paragraph. Because without Him in me, I wouldn’t understand those concepts, much less be able to put them into words. Yet, for some reason, we complicate the Holy Spirit and put Him on a level that we think we can’t possibly understand. Maybe it is the term “Spirit” that makes us think He is too lofty for us. When the opposite is actually true.
When we accept Jesus as our Savior, the Holy Spirit comes to live in us, not to be a mysterious entity that we don’t understand, but to unlock all understanding if we let Him. Just like we give our hearts to Jesus, though, we have to allow the Holy Spirit to come in and take complete control of our lives, our bodies and ourselves. Not as some kind of perverse possession, but as an enhancement of ourselves to the level that God designed us to live on. Think of the Holy Spirit as the ultimate energy drink for your soul. He awakens you, enlivens you and makes it possible for you to be everything that God intended you to be. There is no other way.
The New Testament is full of references to the Holy Spirit; how He intercedes for us in prayer (Romans 8:26), gives strength to our bodies (Romans 8:10-11) and gives us supernatural understanding (John 14:25-26). Yet we persist at giving Him an image of aloofness. He is anything but.
There is no part of the Trinity that we are closer to than the Holy Spirit. He literally resides in us. We just don’t give Him credit for all of the things He accomplishes in us, or it would be evident that He is an intricate part of our daily lives. When we read and understand God’s word…that’s the Holy Spirit. When we pray…that’s the Holy Spirit. When we feel our “conscience” speaking to us…Holy Spirit. When we feel God speaking to us to do or not do something…that’s Him too.
So, you see, the Holy Spirit isn’t some unfathomable entity that hovers around in us and gives us divine revelation at His will. He is God’s greatest gift to us. He is the reason that we are able to live lives that are pleasing to God. He guides and directs us. He is awesome! But just like His Trinity counterparts, He doesn’t come in and consume us against our will. We have to submit to Him, ask Him to take control in our lives and give Him the reigns. If we are saved, He lives in us. But unless we completely surrender to Him, we are missing out on a treasure trove of benefits that come with being a Christian.
After my spiritual rant, I guess I should come back down to earth for a minute and say this: for most of my life I have been borderline afraid of the Holy Spirit. In fact, knowing that He lives in me and not fully understanding Him is kind of freak-out material in my book. So, I have pretty much tried not to think about Him up until recently. But now that I am opening up to the wonderfulness of the Holy Spirit, I realize that I am not fully submitted to Him. Part of me is still resistant to that kind of full submission, but I’m getting there. Right now, I’m praying that God will get me to the place where I completely want to surrender to the Holy Spirit. When I get to the want-to stage, then I’ll worry about the actual submission.
One thing I do know, is that God wants me to submit to His Holy Spirit and He will help me take the steps (baby steps, though they are) in that direction. Until I get there, I will continue to revel in my newfound understanding of this amazing part of my faith and I urge you to do the same.