September 14

Written by Bill Grandi on September 14th, 2022

{Spoiler alert: longer post than normal}

After my September 12 post, Ryan S. responded with the following words:

“I can’t deny that I tried a number of methods to seek God’s will. Though, I have never tried the obvious “fleece method”, I suspect my results would have been similar. Whatever happens, I would find a way to justify my desire. I think if I am honest with myself, I know what I “should” do before even asking most of the time.

The Bible has pretty clear instruction regarding relationships, finances, and our actions. I think if I look close enough, I can find what I am looking for there.
The question really then becomes… Do I like the answer?

When thinking about trying to discern God’s Will, I often come back to the parable of the talents. Seems like a strange connection, but let me see what others think.
God has provided His endless wisdom throughout the Bible. If I choose to live my life according to the His written word in all areas, then perhaps, God would provide me more insight into His unwritten will. I believe He does this through the Holy Spirit living inside us. I think this understanding and knowledge may be shared based on how we handle the direction He has already shared….”

I’d like to give my response by reinforcing what he said. We, as Christ-followers, often underestimate the power and purpose of the Holy Spirit. We freak because of obvious abuses associated with Him. I was in that camp at one time. I was so ignorant of the Spirit and admittedly somewhat naive, that the first time I was in a public worship and someone raised their hands, I broke out in a cold sweat. I was sure some wild stuff was about to happen. It didn’t. In time, I came to study the ministry of the Holy Spirit and was no longer afraid. Eventually, I learned the joy, praise and freedom of raising my hands in worship.

The Holy Spirit is not some mystical force.  He is not some impersonal being. In John 14> 16-18 Jesus gives some important insights into the Holy Spirit:

  • Verse 16– He is our Helper.
  • Verse 17– He is the Spirit of Truth. He is given “human” characteristics. He cannot be seen or touched but He is real.
  • Verse 18– He is Jesus’ representative. Paul calls Him “Christ in You.”
  • Verse 26– Jesus says, “But the Helper, the Holy Spirit will teach you all things.” One young man, who eventually left the church with his family for various reasons, always referred to Him as “of Holy Spirit.” Impersonal.  I never had a chance to ask him why he left out the “the” when referring to the Holy Spirit. Jesus does. Anyway…

The Spirit is Jesus in us. He’s our Helper. He is our Guide. As such, He is given a place in our hearts. I/you invite Him to make Himself at home. (In ancient times, the word for “ghost”-the old King James word- meant “invited guest”). I tell Him to make Himself at home in my heart. He leads. He guides. He protects. As I submit my heart and life to Him-hopefully (and ideally) more completely each day-He is able to reveal more of Himself and more of God’s will for my life.

The big question that arises time after time is this: Am I willing to submit to His influence over my life? Am I willing to go where He wants me to go and do what He wants me to do? If so, I do believe (as Ryan says) that God’s will is made clearer, even that which has been hidden. Even then, it may be unveiled a little at a time.

Here’s the kicker though: Even if God does not reveal His will so I can see clearly the path ahead, I must be willing to follow Him regardless. That is the real influence of the Spirit within me. He is within me to give me the strength to do whatever it is God wants me to do.

Your thoughts?


6 Comments so far ↓

  1. Ryan S. says:

    Thanks for the additional thoughts. John 14 does shine some light and provide confirmation on what I was thinking as well. Verse 28 really does so by stating the Holy Spirit not only continuing to teach, but also to remind. I think this is a clear picture of God revealing of His will through His Spirit. Perhaps if I needed less reminding, the Holy Spirit would have more time to teach 😉

    • Bill Grandi says:

      Glad to offer my thoughts Ryan. As you picked up, the Holy Spirit will continue teaching and reminding us who is in charge. And yes, if I needed less reminding I, too, might have more time to learn. 🙂

  2. When we realize the incredible power of the Holy Spirit, and ask Him to take the lead in our lives, we can’t go wrong. I love thinking of Him as Jesus in me. Such a comfort and a source of strength!
    Blessings, Bill!

    • Bill Grandi says:

      His power in us is incredible and indescribable. When I began to grasp He was Jesus in me that changed things.

  3. gail says:

    I guess the real question comes down to this, is my surrendering to the Holy Spirit just head knowledge or is it truly my heart. There are times I think I have completely surrendered, but if I fight the Holy Spirit, He has to remind me, I need to completely surrender in order to have the guidance I want to have. We both know, who is always right, and who needs reminding of what surrender really is.

    • Bill Grandi says:

      that is a good point Gail. Who owns me is another way to put it. Like you, I think I have it and then I realize that I’m fighting surrender. Thanks for wrestling with this with me and others.