The GPS was in place, and I left for a meeting in an unfamiliar part of town. I was confident that “Pearl” would sail and deliver to me just in time.
After a number of twists and turns, she said, “you have arrived at your destination”. Well, that didn’t look like my destination!
Parked in the driveway, I was immersed in hundreds of flowers, vines, unknown bushes, birds, butterflies and garden flags. It was sensory overload! I felt uncomfortable because I didn’t know how to organize what my eyes were seeing.
I picked up my phone and called to verify I was in the right place. A friendly voice said, “Come down the street to a house and you will see my truck. I walked out of the aisle and made for the next door. With a smile of relief, I entered a normal-looking alley and courtyard. I felt safe.
I thought about my experience all week. I knew there was a lesson to be learned, so I waited for wisdom and revelation during my prayer time. I remembered the portrayal of the Holy Spirit in the New York Times bestseller, “The Shack,” by William P. Young.
The Christian novel sparked controversy when the Trinity was portrayed by unusual figures. Many people reacted because they didn’t read the book as a Christian novel but tried to embrace it as a work of theology.
In the book, the Holy Spirit was represented by an Asian woman named Sarayu. She always created, cultivated her eclectic garden and appeared when you least expected it. My experience this week reminded me of Sarayu’s garden and its creative genius. It also reminded me that the work of the Holy Spirit is often messy!
I think one of the reasons people respond to the Holy Spirit more than other Trinity members is because the Holy Spirit is hard to contain or control.
Just when you think you understand what the Holy Spirit will do in a situation, something else takes place. Just when you think you know how conviction and repentance will come as the work of the Holy Spirit in a person’s life, it comes another way! The Holy Spirit truly lives outside the box, and we humans love things to have their own place and people to behave a certain way. The Holy Spirit is troubling!
The Greek word for spirit is “pneuma” and means breath or wind. By its definition, we are told that the Holy Spirit cannot be contained like the wind cannot. It can blow gently to cool your face on a hot summer day, or it can blow with power like a Category 5 hurricane.
The term Holy Spirit is used 101 times in the New Testament, and it is definitely a part of the life of a New Testament Christian. This is not to be feared but to be embraced as a gift of comfort, help, teaching and power. Let’s look at some scriptures on the Holy Spirit.
John 14: 25-27 KJV: “I told you these things while I was present with you. But the Comforter, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and remind you of all that I have told you. I leave you in peace, I give you my peace; I don’t give you as the world gives. May your heart not be troubled, may it not be afraid. “
Matthew 3:11 KJV: “I baptize you with water for repentance, but he who comes after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to wear. He will baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with fire.
Acts 1: 4-5 KJV: “And being assembled with them, he commanded them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait for the promise of the Father,” which, he said, you have heard from me; for John did baptize with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Ghost in a few days.
Acts 1: 8 KJV: “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you; and ye shall be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.
Acts 10:38 KJV, “how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went everywhere doing good and healing all those oppressed by the devil, for God was with him.
The Holy Spirit is a gift from God, poured out by Jesus so that the church can have power and authority in this world. There’s nothing to worry about, however, it’s messy, creative, and not easy to put in a religious box.
Study the word and discover the ministry of the Holy Spirit and the power He gives you to lead the Christian life.