“I really felt the Spirit moving in worship this morning.”
That phrase was somewhat of a common phrase growing up in my church. When worship was a time where people were pouring their hearts out before the Lord, the service would be followed by people uttering a phrase similar to the one at the top of the page. Sadly, that is many Christians’ understanding of the work of the Spirit. We’ve kept the work of the Spirit bottled up to be a tingle in worship or a flood of emotions when we sing. When that’s what we’re seeking in worship, we’re no longer worshiping Him but we are worshiping ourselves and our feelings.
The Holy Spirit is our “Helper” as Jesus describes. The Spirit steps into the hearts of believers to be a seal of their inheritance in Christ. He steps into the lives of believers and intervenes in our weaknesses. For the Christian, the Spirit of the living God dwells inside of us. That is no small matter. That is something we should take full advantage of. The Spirit’s presence in our life is good for us but it is great to bring God glory. If you look in the book of Acts (the book many Christians associate with the work of the Holy Spirit) you will see why we have the Spirit as Jesus says:
But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth. ~ Acts 1:8
The power of the Holy Spirit comes on the church at the very beginning of the Book of Acts. Why? So that we will be His witnesses. The all powerful Spirit of God dwells in us, not to have a good feeling in worship, but to be the hands and feet and lips of God to the ends of the earth. That is a scary command for many of us. We don’t know what to say to someone about Jesus. We don’t know how to answer someone if they have a hard question of the faith to ask us. We don’t know how people might react if we share the gospel. So we stay silent. We do nothing. Which is sad, because the quote from Scripture that we just read is from the Book of Acts. Not the Book of Singing. Not the Book of Theology. The book of the Bible most associated with the Holy Spirit is the book that records the church going out into the world, acting on their faith and proclaiming the gospel.
That sort of tentativeness is human nature, but His Spirit has an answer for our nature:
“For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands, for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control. Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord, nor of me his prisoner, but share in suffering for the gospel by the power of God, who saved us and called us to a holy calling, not because of our works but because of his own purpose and grace, which he gave us in Christ Jesus before the ages began,” ~ 2 Timothy 1:6-9
The Holy Spirit is given to us, not to be fearful or silent, but to have a spirit of love and power. Why did He save us? Why did call us? Why did He give us His Spirit? Because of His own purpose and grace. The Spirit that raised Jesus from the dead lives in us as adopted sons and daughters of God. That is true power! We have nothing to be afraid of as we share the hope of the gospel.
My hope is that the church would no longer be bashful about the hope that we have in Christ. May we be bold in telling others about the love God has for them. Rest in the Spirit, be bold and He will use you as a witness to the ends of the earth.