A church without the work of the Holy Spirit being manifested in it, is a dying church. Similarly, those in whom the Spirit of God are not at work are experiencing a spiritual death. The Spirit of God is not only available to some, but to every Christ-follower and He gives life to the church and to God’s people. It seems that many Christians have become complacent about the work and power of the Spirit in their lives, but without Him, life is not really possible.
So, how does the Spirit empower us? Here are some thoughts about three brief ways we can experience God’s Spirit and in which He gives us life and power:
- Being filled with the spirit empowers our prayer lives.
We can never underestimate the power of and need for prayer, but busyness often keeps us from it. We often wallow around in the shallow end of faith and wonder why things aren’t really happening, but prayer is almost non-existent in our lives. If we don’t communicate with God, we can’t move forward in our faith journey. By the power of the Spirit of God, we are enabled not just to pray for ourselves and those we love, but even to pray for our enemies and for those who have hurt us. The Spirit moves us from sporadic SOS prayers to a lifestyle of prayer.
2. The Spirit also empowers us to know and walk in our purpose.
When we don’t live empowered by the Spirit, the purpose of the church becomes about structures – about rules and regulations, programmes, religiosity and ticking the boxes. When we live empowered by the Spirit of God, we are enabled to focus on what’s really important and to live out our faith in real and practical ways. We are enabled to use our gifts and abilities, our resources and our talents to serve others as God intended.
3. The Spirit moves us to action.
At Pentecost, after the disciples were filled with the Spirit, the time of waiting was over and they went out into the world to fulfil their God-given mission. Our default is self-preservation. To step outside ourselves, to reach out to other people, to actually share the Gospel, to physically engage with the poor and the broken does not come naturally to us, but it is the calling to which we are called and the Spirit of God empowers us to do the radical things God asks of us.
“But you shall receive power, the Holy Spirit coming upon you. And you shall be witnesses to Me both in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” – Acts 1:8