I’m continuing a series of blog posts with my sister Betty Haynie about what we believe. Our thoughts may be helpful to those who are uncertain about God. Betty wrote down her beliefs in detail several years ago. I’ll post her thoughts monthly and add my thoughts and beliefs to each one. Our thoughts are intentionally brief on subjects that could fill volumes.
WHY I BELIEVE IN THE HOLY SPIRIT
By Betty Haynie
I believe the Holy Spirit lives within our hearts once we have accepted Christ as our Savior. He is the God that never leaves us nor forsakes us; the great Comforter who brings peace and joy.
“I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, so that He maybe with you forever.” John 14:16 (ASV)
The Holy Spirit is known as the Comforter. His role is to operate in time and space, but without the physical limitations of a body. His role extends through out all time so He can be with each person who accepts Jesus as Lord. It is at this time that the Holy Spirit enters into the new believer’s heart and becomes their Comforter.
From the time one accepts Jesus as Savior, he or she is a new person and the Holy Spirit is his or her guide and constant companion on the rest of life’s journey. As a coat cannot wave its “arms” on command, without a “body” on the inside to help it move, neither can a Christian function in Christ-like ways without the Holy Spirit on the inside directing his/her steps and activities from that moment on.
Bill Bright, in his book Blessed Child puts it this way:
“Everything in the Christian life involves the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit came to glorify Christ, to lead us into all truth, to convict us of sin, and to draw us to the Savior. We must be born of the Spirit. Only through the enabling of the Spirit can a person understand the Word of God and live under its power.”
Having had a personal encounter with the Holy Spirit on
May 20, 1990, I
can absolutely verify that the Holy Spirit is real. He came into my heart that
day and I have not been the same since. I am a new creature, free from the sins
of my past, (and present and future), free from all guilt, free from the burden
of worry. The peace, joy and amazing love, through this grace of God fills my
soul to overflowing.
The Holy Spirit is within each believer continuously, day and night, whether sought after or not; no matter what happens He is there guiding, protecting, directing the steps of the would-be righteous. He encourages us in every-thing that is of God - reading the Word, attending church, worshiping, praying, volunteering for church outreach or missions activities or any and all acts of kindness in our every day walk.
He is also there to remind us of our human, but “not-so-wonderful” attributes, especially our attitudes or tendencies, such as a short fuse with our kids or mates – or the guy who cuts you off on the highway! He is friend, advisor, assistant, comrade, instructor, - even a nuisance when you have your mind set on some counter-productive activity or mission (such as revenge or getting even!) He is a blessing beyond measure for all of God’s people.
THE MANIFEST PRESENCE OF GOD EXCEEDS OUR EXPECTATIONS WHEN THE HEART IS TRULY SEEKING GOD.
God is in control, and I am on His side, and that means:
ALL IS WELL
WITH MY SOUL!!! How’s YOUR soul
“I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:13
WHY I BELIEVE IN THE HOLY SPIRIT
By Dottie Parish
I love how Betty put it; "The Holy Spirit’s role is to operate in time and space, but without the physical limitations of a body. And a coat cannot wave its 'arms' on command, without a 'body' on the inside to help it move." The Holy Spirit is a great Comfort and Power for true believers.
Betty reported she had a personal encounter with the Holy Spirit on
May 20, 1990. I also had a personal encounter with the
Holy Spirit two months prior to hers - on March 18, 1990, and I, too, can
absolutely verify that the Holy Spirit is real! The Holy Spirit led me in a
variety of new directions.
For one, along with great joy and wonder at discovering God is real, I also felt great grief and sadness that I had turned my back on God and on his church for decades. I prayed for forgiveness and decided to make amends for this by giving a financial contribution to cover a small offering I might have given over 35 years. I also became more aware of others needs and more giving to others. The Spirit gave me an incredible lightness of being at times and great joy.
Over the years the Holy Spirit has carried out in me many of the activities Betty describes – restraining my need to control others, reining in my anger, and mostly feeding my soul. Two major leadings of the Holy Spirit impacted my life. In 1996 as we helped start a
at the church I felt God’s call to start The Third
Option – a group that is designed to help couples with marriage problems. In organizing
the Third Option I felt like I’d jumped off a cliff. It was so scary and beyond
anything I’d done in the past. The Third Option helped many people with their
marriages but it also taught me and grew me and ministered to me and led to
many friendships. M and I led this program together and it blessed our
marriage. We continued in this in two locations from 1996 to 2007. And we
turned the two groups over to others to continue. The Holy Spirit also nudged
me to write a book about changing churches. This, too, was a leap of faith and
taught me much. Christian Counseling Center
More important than a special call on your life to do something is the daily awareness of the presence of God and the comfort and assurance that gives you.
The Holy Spirit changed the disciples dramatically, too. Prior to Jesus ascending to heaven he told the disciples “Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about. John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit…. You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you.” Acts 1:4-5, 8
After Jesus left them the disciples and followers, 120 men and women, prayed continually and on the day of Pentecost they were filled with the Spirit. This small group of ordinary people turned the world upside down. Following this these previously fearful men were bold and powerful. There is no limit to their hopes or their resolve. Read Acts Chapters 1- 4 to get the picture of this miraculous event and of the changes in the disciples as a result.
“With great power the apostles were giving testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus and abundant grace was upon them all.” Acts
As a result of this small group of Holy Spirit empowered men and women, within a century half the then-known world came to Christ.
Verses about receiving the Holy Spirit are thrilling to all true believers. Are you inspired by them? “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you.” Acts 1:8 These are the words of Jesus! Seek him and he will fill your heart with his joyful spirit.
Watch for the next Reasons to Believe post on WHY I BELIEVE IN THE RESURRECTION in late October by Betty and Dottie