But very truly I tell you, it is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you. John 16:7
You, however, are not in the realm of the flesh but are in the realm of the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God lives in you. Romans 8:9
In his book, Organic Church, Neil Cole tells the story about a Korean pastor who made a tour of Churches in the United States. At the end of his visit, he summarized his observation with the comment, “It is amazing what you people can do without the Holy Spirit.” I remember reading that quote for the first time in 2005 and being hit with the reality of it. I realized that personally, I gave very little thought to the Holy Spirit. I didn’t think I was alone in this. And that is a tragedy.
I remember at times in my life thinking how amazing it would be if I could hang with Jesus in bodily form — walk around with him, ask him questions; his presence physical and immediate. As we know, Jesus did just that with a bunch of people 2,000 years ago. And when his time of doing just that was coming to an end, he told his friends that as good as that time was, there was something better coming. The Holy Spirit, the Advocate, the Helper — God — would come and make his home in them. Sometimes it feels like God is far off. Yet the reality is that he is closer to you than if Jesus himself were sitting in the room.
Do you believe that? Don’t answer two quickly. My question is not if you can wrap your mind around it, or if you believe that the Bible says that and that the Bible is the Word of God. My question is do YOU believe that? Do you believe that God, the Holy Spirit, lives in you and is just chomping at the bit to lead every aspect of your life that you let him? That is God’s promise to all who decide to follow him, who believe in and place their trust in him — the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of God, the Spirit of Christ living in you, guiding you, comforting you, teaching you. Do you believe that?
Spend some time with that question. Sit with it — don’t move on two quickly. What are the implications of that reality? How does the reality of God in you transform your “next thing?” Work, play, family, friends; troubles, stresses, joys, hopes, fears — the things that live in our hearts and minds and souls. Spend time this week living into the reality of Christ in you.
“Father, Jesus, Holy Spirit, I desperately need you and want you to lead me and teach me. Make me aware of your presence in me, in every thought and every conversation — in every moment — every hour, every minute and every second. Amen”