"God therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit..." Matt 28:19
I love the Holy Spirit.
Coming to faith into both a Reformed theological story as well as a Charismatic experience was an act of divine kindness. I thought everyone believed what we believed and did what we did. It was only after a while that I found, to my surprise, that all did not have the same story.
Now I must say right at the outset, I have a prejudice against the charismatic subculture that has caused so much damage globally. But the sheer beauty, tenderness, intimacy and empowerment that the Holy Spirit brings, is too magnificent to neglect, ignore, hinder. We certainly don't want to be guilty of of believing in the Father, the Son and the Holy Bible [ as a substitute for the Holy Spirit]- either by proclamation or practice.
In our Statement of Faith we wrote:
"We believe the Holy Spirit indwells, sanctifies, leads, illumines, and graciously empowers for godly living and service all who come to faith in Christ. As well as the continuation of all the “charismata” of the Spirit, and that He desires to fill and empower believers for ministry, mission, witness, and for the building up of His church in love."
The Holy Spirit is the third person in the Trinity and deserves to be honored, listened to, heeded, responded and discerned. As this is about our DNA more than our theology allow me to explain.
We simply cannot achieve our divine mission without this third person of the Trinity. We have to surrender our right of prejudice and preference as to what he can do, and how he can do it. That does not mean we cast our brains aside. It does mean that we become students of the scriptures to learn of the ways in which the Spirit has ministered. Then accept the responsibility to be students of church history, to see how he has led the church in days gone by.
The older I get, the more committed I am to die daily. It is so easy to justify disobedience to cultural sensitivity. That dear reader, dishonors the one we really need to be sensitive to.
Back in the day we borrowed the phrase from some of the British leaders who spoke of being "naturally supernatural and supernaturally natural". There is no room to change voice tone, gain a quiver in our prayers, to shake and somehow do things that appear more mystical. I simply do not see that in the life of Jesus, nor in his ministry. Whenever we are asked about such things I simply look for it in the life of Christ. If it is not there, clear and evident, it may still be God, but we cannot make it the big thing, if it is valid at all.
We want all of the Holy Spirit. We do not want to quench him, hinder him, resist him, prescribe to him, liturgically exclude him! Rather we want to be led by him, walk by him, live by the him, be empowered by him - see him evident in our daily lives, our weekly gatherings, our mission moments. Without him we simply cannot...