This is one of those topics that will probably turn into a multi-part blog like the series on prayer turned out to be. If you’ve read A.W. Tozer, you know he sensed what’s missing from today’s church regardless of denomination. What Tozer wrote for his time (he died in the 1960’s) is as valid for us today, and we would all do well to heed his truly prophetic counsel.
Is God the Holy Spirit truly part of your spiritual life? Do you hear His voice? Do you know how to? Do you follow His prompting and leading even when it doesn’t make sense to you? You have a relationship with Jesus. Do you have a similar relationship with God the Holy Spirit?
The above are questions that will be addressed in subsequent posts, but I feel led to place them here for you to ponder because they really do affect your spiritual life.
Back to Tozer. He said God the Holy Spirit is missing from the church. And he’s right. He says that many fellowships are social occasions with some spirituality thrown in. He’s right there, too. Many has been the time when Pastor G and I are on fire to share how God worked in our lives and ministry only to be met with people who wanted to talk about secular stuff: money, job, family, things like that. God and His word seemed only to have a place at bible studies and from the pulpit. Scripture says we should edify each other. That means spiritually. If we are not spiritual-minded, how can we do that?
It’s experiences like the one mentioned above that discouraged Pastor G and me from sharing God and His miracles and presence in our life and ministry. Imagine how God the Holy Spirit feels when He touches a life and the response is jaded or ho-hum. Instead, imagine how thrilled He would be to have people He loves recognize, love and appreciate Him for who He is.
The saddest picture of brethren and the church is found in 2Timothy 3. The verses refer to perilous times and perilous men. You could say the people are spiritually toxic, and so are the fellowships.
2 Timothy 3:1-5 (NKJV)
3 But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: 2 For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, 3 unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, 4 traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, 5 having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away!
If you see yourself or your fellowship in the above verses, pray without ceasing for God’s touch on your life and fellowship. Pray that you and those you know will be filled with God the Holy Spirit and be transformed into the spiritual beings you are meant to be. Pray that instead of exhibiting the characteristics in 2Timothy 3, you will exhibit the fruits of the Spirit listed in Galatians 5.
Galatians 5:22-23 (NKJV)
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.
Pray with me please. Father God, thanks for the wake up call that we and our fellowships are incomplete because we don’t cherish and welcome God the Holy Spirit the way we should. Help us to be spiritually connected to Him like we are spiritually connected to You and Jesus. Help us to know His voice and to heed Him like we heed You. Help us to seek to please and honor Him like we seek to please and honor You. Help us to obey Him with all our hearts just like we seek to do the same with You. May we know His presence in our lives and in our fellowships, and may it be an ever-increasing presence and awareness on our parts. Holy Spirit, You are God, and we love You just like we love the Father and Jesus. Thanks for forgiving us so that we can begin fresh and new from this moment forward. In Jesus’ name, amen
copyright 2014, Pastors George and Sharon Billington, All Rights Reserved