Empowerment of the Holy Spirit

Empowerment of the Holy Spirit

Years ago, I returned to my home place in Boerne for a catch-up visit with Dad & Mother. As our sharing progressed through the night, mother contentedly fell asleep in her den chair. While Dad and I continued, I explained to him what I was learning about understanding God’s leadership in our lives. “God will show us the vision we are to pursue. However, God will only give us the specific signs to follow as we need them. I call this – confirming signs of the Spirit.” Dad smiled and said, “We will call it C.S.S.” Subsequently when we talked, we asked each other for C.S.S. updates. When he passed away, I changed my then license plate to CSS.

Jesus explained that the Holy Spirit counsels, comforts, and confronts us. Through each of the Spirit’s actions we are given a C.S.S. We are responsible for our response. If the Spirit confronts our conscience, then we are to examine ourselves, and get re-aligned to God’s best intentions. If we are confused about what to do next, then we are to pursue the Spirit’s counsel and act on the wisdom we receive. If we are anxious, we are to allow the Spirit’s comfort to bring our dis-ease into ease.

The Holy Spirit empowers us to live the Christian life successfully. After my freshman year at Baylor, I worked as a summer missionary in Oregon. My primary responsibilities included being the pastor of a house church, preaching for revivals & camps, and doing community service in a logging village. But my personal objective for the summer was “to get the Holy Spirit.” I wanted to live the Spiritfilled life. To satisfy this yearning, I filled my suitcases with books about the Holy Spirit. By summer’s end I had learned more about the Spirit, but I did not have more of the Spirit.

My yearning and questing continued until I learned the secret. God had never intended it to be a secret. A gift? Yes, which is why spiritual gifts are called “grace gifts.” A second blessing? Yes, if we understand that there are continuous blessings of transformation which the Spirit ushers into our lives.

What, then, is the secret I learned? Yielding.

Yielding to the Spirit means the Spirit is free to instruct our minds, inspire our hearts, empower our spirits, and embolden our bodies. Since at birth we are made in God’s image, we have the Spirit with us in the beginning. Since our belief in Christ, we have the Spirit helping us to believe. But the Spirit has much more for us, and this more unfolds as we continually yield our will into God’s Will. By desiring, receiving, and obeying – the Spirit grows us from the inside out, this growth is called the fruit of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Galatians 5:22- 23).