Friday, March 30, 2012

The Spirit Filled Life

For the past couple weeks our pastor, Bill Giovannetti, has been preaching on the topic of the Holy Spirit.

While the majority of these sermons come directly from the Bible (Ephesians) Bill also directed us to a pamphlet created by Dr. Bill Bright (the creator of Campus Crusade for Christ): Have You Made the Wonderful Discovery of the Spirit Filled Life?

Reading through this pamphlet was awesome.

Not only is it TOTALLY philosophical/logical based (good for Kaitlin’s brain), but it also, through scripture really made the before mystical (to me at least) concept of the Holy Spirit easy to grasp.

I really recommend that you take the time to read the entire pamphlet, but for the sake of this blog post I will highlight what I took most away from it.

#1. There are Three Types of People
a)      Natural Person (Self-Directed Life)
a.       This person is not a Christian and Jesus has no part in his/her life
b)      Spiritual Person (Christ-Directed Life)
a.       A Christian who has Jesus in the spotlight of his/her life
b.      They are resting on Jesus’ strength for the glory of the Kingdom
c)      Carnal Person (Self-Directed Life)
a.       A Christian who has themselves in the spotlight of his/her life
b.      They are relying on their own strength and for their own glory

Now, I would maybe argue that there are two types of people: those who have Jesus, and those who do not.

I think that the difference between the Spiritual Person and the Carnal Person is not two entirely different entities, but the normal fluctuation of the everyday, daily life of a Christian in a fallen world.

Do I think one day I’ll suddenly “switch” from the Carnal Person to the Spiritual Person?

No. 

I think that some days are better than others.

I know that each day I can strive to be the Spiritual Person, and leave “Carnal Kaitlin” at home…but, then again, that’s why I need Jesus.

I know the more “Spiritual Person” moments I have (maturing through prayer, scripture, and PRACTICE) the better off I’ll be.

However, I also know that I have not seen the last of my “Carnal Christian” ways as long as I am surrounded by this fallen world.

#2 How to Life a “Spirit Filled Life” (& what does that even mean)

We, as Christians, worship a triune God (three Gods in one).

Yet, how often do I really even think about the Holy Spirit?

To me, he seems like the guy who’s just kinda there…doesn’t really do much. 

And, in a way, that’s kind of exactly what he is supposed to appear to us as.  

The Holy Spirit’s job is to highlight and spotlight Jesus.

13 "But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come. 14 "He shall glorify Me; for He shall take of Mine, and shall disclose [it] to you.
JOHN 16:13-14

So, he’s supposed to be giving all the glory to the son!

But, that doesn’t mean he isn’t a supernatural source that we have access to and should tap into in our daily life.

Here is an easy prayer to say that can direct you in how to open your heart to the Holy Spirit in your life:
"Dear Father, I need You. I acknowledge that I have been directing my own life and that, as a result, I have sinned against You. I thank You that You have forgiven my sins through Christ's death on the cross for me. I now invite Christ to again take His place on the throne of my life. Fill me with the Holy Spirit as You commanded me to be filled, and as You promised in Your Word that You would do if I asked in faith. I now thank You for directing my life and for filling me with the Holy Spirit. Amen."
Now that you have done that; now what?
Were you struck by lightening?
Did you fall to the ground with the glory of God and see the lights flash of 1,000 suns?
No?
Shoot it didn’t work.
Right?
WRONG!
Just like faith, when you ask the Holy Spirit to reside in you, you must trust on God’s authority (His written word and promises) that your request has been granted. 
Do. Not. Trust. Your. Feelings.
Okay, now seriously read this again…say it out loud…tattoo it on your forearm…whatever…
Do. Not. Trust. Your. Feelings.
I’m serious!
Your feelings are pulled in a thousand directions and convoluted by this freaking messed up world.
To KNOW that you are filled with God’s joy and the Holy Spirit, you must simply BELIEVE.
Period.
By allowing the Holy Spirit to guide you through your daily life you are opening up each and every decision and action and thought to glorify Christ.
And isn’t that what this is all about?
And, seriously, read the whole pamphlet.

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