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Did you start your Christian walk with zeal and passion for righteousness? Were you passionate about evangelism and ministry but find that the same fire doesn’t burn as hot anymore? Did you use to have perfect attendance at Sunday morning worship and bible study but can’t find the energy or desire to be there as much anymore? If you answered yes to any of these questions then there is hope for you!
What happened? Did life take a turn for the worst?
Maybe some experience devastated you and caused you to lose trust in God. Perhaps you are just bored with the faith and being around other Christians seems to offer no help. Maybe you were hurt by another Christian. Is it possible that you committed some horrible sin and feel like you can’t tell anyone? Could it be you’re stuck in a pattern of sin and you wish you could be free? Whichever category you fit in you are being killed by it. This sounds like a job for the Holy Spirit. He is the third person in the Godhead and specializes in the area of filling, empowering, and comforting Christians to name a few.
When you yield to the Holy Spirit, you have access to His power and fullness…
When the Bible speaks of being filled with the Holy Spirit it is simply saying that Christians are to yield to Him in obedience. It is through this yielding that believers become empowered, energized to obey and serve in ministry, and to flourish in our gifts. Often times during the course of our Christian journey we begin to get lazy and nonchalant about our sin. This always leads to defeat and weariness. If we are not daily pursuing God through prayer, Bible intake, confession of sin, repentance, and Christian community we will eventually burn out and slowly lose our desire for righteousness and God Himself.
This Is Not Done By Tarrying To Speak In Tongues
This popular misunderstanding is taken from Acts 2:1-11, Acts 8, Acts 10, and Acts 19. The Christians in these passages were born again believers but had not yet received the baptism with the Holy Spirit nor had they been filled. There was an obvious time gap between them being saved and them being filled with the Holy Spirit. The result of this experience was seen when believers spoke in unknown tongues or languages and began proclaiming God’s good works and good news about Jesus Christ boldly. This was a transitional time in biblical history. God’s people were about to experience the power of His Holy Spirit in such a way that had never been experienced before. In the Old Testament only a select few were given special abilities with gifts for ministry. This all changed at Pentecost. At Pentecost all the believers that were there received the baptism. This was a unique experience and time period that is not meant to be considered the normal pattern for all believers for ages to come. It was also the fulfillment of the prophesy in Joel 2:28-29 (Acts 2: 16-21)
Noticing The Need
Keep in mind we all grow at different rates and speeds. However the more a Christian begins to sense his or her need for more of God’s presence and power it is crucial for that person to begin crying out to God for significant spurts in growth. God will hear you and provide insight and strength.
It’s Time to Get Serious and Fight!
I realize that we all have different struggles and weaknesses. For each struggle there are specific strategies and biblical principles that can help. It is each person’s Christian responsibility to search his/her own heart and habits in order know them well. In doing so, this allows you to pin point what triggers your sinful responses and behaviors. Once these things are recognized you can begin to attack them head on! Begin to watch yourself and ask yourself questions. Why did I do that? What was it that I desired when I said that? Why did I think that? Will this help me in the long run? There are multiple ways you will need to attack them. Some will need professional help from a trained Christian or Biblical Counselor. Some will need to destroy computers, get rid of cable, get internet software to protect them from on-line traps, and diligently seek out someone to hold them accountable to their goal. Some will need to put themselves in humbling positions of service in order to fight pride and pursue humility. Some will need to confess and repent of sin to someone in their life. Some will need to forgive someone and pursue reconciliation with them. Some will need to volunteer for some type of mission trip or public speaking event to break fear or the fear of man. Some will need to give more of their time and money in order to fight greed and selfishness. Some will need to step down from public ministry in order to grow closer to the Lord. These are just a few examples of practical ways to fight and pursue obedience. It is one thing to talk and say you want change but another thing to put yourself in uncomfortable positions that will make you afraid and cause you to have to trust God second by second, minute by minute. Don’t worry it is the Holy Spirit who will be present with you and empowering you to step out and get started. He will be there in between and in the end! God will use several things to encourage you on your new found journey. He will use the bible, preaching, prayer, Christian music, other people, and even a few tests along the way. All to His credit and praise and for your good. Yielding to the Holy Spirit always brings peace and blessing. It also benefits others. When we obey God we will never be disappointed!
Key Bible Verses:
“But the Helper, the Holy Spirit Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things…”
Ephesians 5:18 – 21
“And do not get drunk with win, for this is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit, addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with all your heart, giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, submitting to one another out of reverence for Christ.
If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit
To set your mind on the flesh is death, but to set your mind on the Spirit is life and peace
1 Corinthians 6:19-20
Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.
2 Corinthians 6:16
“What agreement has the temple of God with idols? For we are the temple of the living God…”