Help for your commitment

Published 11:30 am Friday, July 25, 2008

Our readers know that for the last seven Saturdays my column has emphasized the need and the requirements for a God-sent “spiritual awakening” in me and in others. God has promised: “If My people will meet the requirements, I will hear, forgive and heal the land.”

Last Saturday was a beginning decision day, challenging readers to decide and say to God, “I will!” I will begin to humble myself, pray, seek God’s face and turn from my wicked ways. A spiritual awakening has begun, no matter how small the beginning may be. I know of two readers who have told me, “My response to God was, I will.” I personally speak a word of faith today and say, “A Spiritual Awakening has begun and is beginning in Chilton County to the glory of God.”

A dear friend said to me last Sunday morning, “Do you really think that people will humble themselves before God?” Today, as I think about his question, my thoughtful response is that I refuse to limit God. A spiritual awakening is the need for God’s people in his church and churches. And the Bible says “God is able to do immeasurably more than all we may ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work in us, unto Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever.” I believe God is able and I expect to see His glory restored to his church and churches, His people.

Each person who has made a commitment or will make a commitment to begin to meet the requirements for a spiritual awakening probably feels as I do: “I will, but I must have help.” That is why I begin a series of articles today on “Experiencing the Holy Spirit.” There is no such thing as a spiritual awakening apart from the Holy Spirit.

Therefore I begin with “Three Simple Truths about the Holy Spirit.” We take the words of Jesus in the Gospel of John 14:16-18: “And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper to be with you forever – the Spirit of truth. The world cannot receive him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. I will not leave you without a helper; I will come to you.” In these three verses Jesus tells us three powerful, personal and practical truths about how the Holy Spirit relates to you.

First, the Holy Spirit is your helper. He is with you and beside you to help you. There is nothing God requires of you or calls upon you to do but what the Holy Spirit is present and ready to help you. We need help for our commitment to a spiritual awakening. The Holy Spirit will help you to humble yourself before God, he will help you with praying, he will help you with seeking God’s face and he will help you with turning from your wicked ways. He is your helper.

Second, the Holy Spirit dwells in you; you have the Holy Spirit; he lives in you. In verse 17 Jesus says, “He shall be in you.” There is no such thing as a saved, believing, child of God who does not have the Holy Spirit dwelling within. He is called the Spirit, the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Christ, the Spirit of God or the Holy Ghost. The Bible says in Romans 8:9, “If any one does not have the Spirit of Christ he does not belong to Christ.” The Apostle Paul said to the problem laden church members at Corinth, “Do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you.” So, your Helper is not only with you or beside you, he is within. Call on him; depend on him.

Third, the Holy Spirit will always be available to you. Jesus said in verse 16, “The Father will give you another Helper to be with you forever”. That “help is near” has never been so true. That help is “willing, ready and able” was never more real. Therefore, as we make our personal commitments to a Spiritual Awakening let’s do so with faith in the unending help of the Holy Spirit.

In this and following articles, I have no interest whatsoever in parading simple facts about the Holy Spirit. My only concern is that that you and I may experience the Holy Spirit or Holy Ghost in a real spiritual awakening. Please pray for me. Pray for yourself, your family and your church.

Note: Charles Christmas is a religious columnist for The Clanton Advertiser. His column appears each Saturday.