” But the Counselor, The Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name , will teach you all things and remind you of everything I have said to you. ” John 14:26
Q. What is the role of The Holy Spirit in your life ?
I love that The Holy Spirit is referred to as The Counselor, that he will give us counsel. What does this mean? He has the authority to give guidance, advise and help, to lead us into all knowledge of everything concerning Jesus and our lives lived in Him.
” And the Spirit of The LORD will rest on him- the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might, the Spirit of knowledge and fear of The LORD.” Isaiah 11:2
How fitting that He is also called the comforter. What an incredible thing to be able to rest in the knowledge that we have with us , every day Gods’ spirit to guide , teach , and reassure us .
I still remember vividly the day that this became a reality for me. I knew of The Holt Spirit , but coming from an extremely conservative church background , I didn’t truly understand , or KNOW Him and how He wanted to be an integral part of my life.
My husband and I had been going through some difficult times and we were experiencing an rather severe spiritual attack on our home and family. We sought counselling through a well known and respected Pastor and his wife. During our sessions , after getting to know us and our story, the Pastor asked us if we would truly like to know the Holy Spirit and have Him live within us.
” ………But you know Him , because He lives with you now and later will be in you .” John 14:17
We said yes and they laid hands on us and prayed a simple prayer. The earth didn’t move, nor did we break out in an unknown tongue, but…… We did leave that session feeling different. An overwhelming sense of peace and desire for more of Jesus and His word had washed over both of us, as soon as we arrived home I opened my Bible to John 14. It was as though the pages were alive , the words jumping out to meet me and a new understanding began to unfold..” He will teach you all things ” Our desire to worship intensified in a new, passionate and abandoned way, which was at odds with all that we were used to but we stepped out and followed The Holy Spirits leading. And what a journey it has been……and it continues.
He will stretch you , take you out of your comfort zones, reveal truths that you were once blind to , He will break your heart for what breaks His and place a new song within you , and He will give you PEACE.
” And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor , who will NEVER leave you. He is the Holy Spirit, who leads into all truth. The world at large cannot receive him, because it isn’t looking for him and doesn’t recognise him. But you do……..” John 14:16-17
” He heals the broken hearted and bandages their wounds. He counts the stars and calls them all by name. How great is our Lord! His power is absolute! His understanding is beyond comprehension.” Psalm 147:3-5
Q. In this world what reminds you most of Gods mighty power ?
There are so many things that can remind us of Gods mighty power in our day to day routines, we just need to stop long enough to see it , be quiet enough to listen and hear and take the time to appreciate what’s around us.
Get up early one morning and soak in the suns first rays at sunrise. Stop during the day and look closely at what’s around you, the flowers in the garden, not just a glance , examine the intricacy and complex beauty of their individuality. Listen intently to the melody of birds songs, smell the sweet aromas of nature in the breeze. Sit and relish in a beautiful sunset until twilight emerges. And then gaze into the night sky and admire the stars He has set in place.
Marvel at a babies tiny , perfect little hands and feet, drink in the sound of laughter. Allow yourself to be deeply touched with compassion when you see faith in action as the broken are restored and given a chance at new life.
His awesome touch on humanity is everywhere……..Stop……..Look………Listen..
Sixteen years ago when we moved into our house, there was not a tree to be seen in our subdivision. Along with the majority of other fellow home builders we embarked upon a tree planting frenzy in the hope of giving our suburban lifestyle a touch of ” country “. Our little corner of the world also backs onto wetlands teeming with birdlife, an oasis really.
Amongst our green thumbed efforts was a small tubestock gum tree, I actually thought it was dead, but we planted it anyway in the hope that it might revive and grow tall and strong as its little tag of information indicated it should.
At first it grew slowly and many of the other trees planted near by overtook it in height and it seemed to be dwarfed by their rapid growth. Many storms have passed through, destroying alot of our little gum trees fast growing neighbours. It too was tossed about, and more than once we thought we’d lost it as well. With the arrival of each new season it sheds its old bark to reveal a new and stronger trunk.
Now, standing tall and strong at the bottom of our yard is our gum tree. Its leaves are glossy and profuse, birds anually nest and take haven in its sturdy branches, when the storms pass through it is steadfast because our little gum tree has tapped into the source……its roots have grounded deep into the water it was planted by.
Little gum trees progress has been slow and often seemingly not at all, but when its roots finally connected to the life source, it grew and grew and continues to grow. Storm and drought no longer a threat, it can withstand the elements because its planted firm and strong. I’m a lot like little gum tree. My progress has been slow and arduous, I’ve been tossed about by the storms of life, at times getting lost at sea. I ‘ve been planted by the water but I haven’t allowed my roots to really go deep enough to withstand the storm…. until now. What an incredible place of security and shelter it is to be firmly planted and grounded in the one who will carry me through all of life’s turmoils .
” They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit. ” Jeremiah 17:8 NIV
BE STILL AND KNOW
Flicking through one of my old journals, I came across an entry I had made 4 years ago. I periodically read my penned thoughts to revisit inspiration, seeing how far I’ve traveled…or in some cases, not. The Ahhh moment. THIS is how He speaks to me. When I am not journaling, I experience an emptiness, something is missing. During seasons in my life that have taken me through some of the darkest moments, I have not journaled. This is how I pray and when I most needed to communicate with Him, to write, I didn’t. Prayer, as I had always assumed was a verbal exercise, and for most I guess it is, but I’m different. Expressing my innermost thoughts has always flowed more freely through the written word. I’m certainly not an extraordinary writer, however at times I am compelled to share the inspiration given to me with others. This entry has spoken anew again to me and the message within is for You. I pray it too is your Ahhh moment.
I have called you back from the ends of the earth so you can serve me. For I have chosen you and will not throw you away. Do not be afraid for I am with you. Do not be dismayed for I am your God. I will strengthen you. I will uphold you with my victorious right hand.
Sitting here at the top of Mt Tomaree gazing out at the sea, sun shining, casting a pathway of sparkling gold from its early morning haunt, the breeze warm and gentle on my face, listening to nature preparing for a new day, the melodic song of a magpie fills the crisp morning air.
I ponder anew…….” How great is my God “. Basking in such beauty and peace stirs something deep within me, a sense of the Grandeur of my God, how totally impossible yet possible He is. I CAN be still and know that He is God. To sit and bathe in the knowledge of Him is truly breathtaking. To quiet my mind and allow Him to speak to me, to feel His reassuring presence, I am His. He has my life , my world in His hands, He has set my path before me, I can trust in Him. A defining moment of truth…… I am purposed.
My Destiny lies at the end of my obedience.
She is clothed with strength and dignity, she laughs with no fear of the future.
How great is my God
I don’t know if you have or are experiencing that place of darkness, but I had wandered far from this knowledge. I had gotten lost in the storms of life. Instead of holding fast to the life raft…..I jumped out.
“I was foolish and ignorant yet still I belong to you. You are holding my right hand. You will keep on guiding me with your counsel, leading me to a glorious destiny ” Psalm 73:22-24
So whether you have lost your way, forgotten your purpose, or simply just need to Be Still and Know, remember He has you in His hands beautiful Sista, where ever you may be.
I haven’t posted for a couple of days , as I am just emerging from an hectic and totally amazing weekend of which I can’t help but share.
Our beautiful city of Newcastle has just hosted an event ” CityFest with Luis Palau “. After over a year of planning, hundreds of volunteers and church partnerships, council and community support, the festival went ahead, blessed with a weekend of incredible weather and most importantly Gods presence.
A few months ago, in preparation for CityFest, local churches in our Hunter Region launched CityServe, which is to become an regular event. Almost 1000 volunteers embarked on a day of community service. From backyard blitz’s to school maintenance, to cleaning up our streets, blessing homes in need, you name it , they did it. A real felt benefit was created in our community, media coverage expressed a positive influence from our local churches.
The buzz and anticipation increasing the week leading up to CityFest with radio, television , paper and flyers flooding our town.
And it did not disappoint . On our beautiful foreshore, it was all happening.
Extreme Sports demos by JC Epidemic, Jesus ProAm Surf competition, Kids Fun Zone hosting a myriad of activities and daily show with The Lads, and markets with food and local artisans.
On The Main Stage, bands including Evermore, Hillsong, New Empire and Antiskeptic, artists Britt Nicole, Darlene Zschech, Stan Walker and The Salem Gospel Choir, rocked our city.
Thousands of people were treated to an incredible family friendly weekend of totally FREE, yes….FREE, entertainment and fun. But most importantly they heard the message of hope, the good news of The Gospel.
Luis Palau has shared this message with millions of people worldwide, and over this weekend, in our little corner of the world, through the sharing of life experience from both he and his son Andrew, the awesome transforming power of the Gospel was made known and hundreds raised their hands and gave their lives to Jesus.
An event of this magnitude requires hundreds of thousands of dollars, not to mention the commitment of man hours. An army of volunteers to willingly give of their time, money and PRAYER.
Our community has been given a glimpse of Christianity as a lifestyle. We know how to have fun, party and enjoy life. We are real people, willing to give back to our community in a positive way.
This festival was not about ” Bang for the Buck ” or the number of salvations. We are not to know how many seeds were planted, nor as to when they will germinate. Jesus died even for the one.
Was CityFest worth all the money and effort ?
” This is how much God loved the world: He gave his Son, his one and only Son. And this is why: so that NO ONE need be destroyed ; by believing in him, ANYONE can have a whole and lasting life. God didn’t go to all the trouble of sending his Son merely to point an accusing finger , telling the world how bad it was. He came to help, to put the world right again. Anyone who trusts in him is acquitted……” John 3:16-17 The Message
Ps we were treated to an amazingly beautiful sunset on the closing evening.