Thursday, May 21
Forty Days of Promises: Week 4
Focus of the week: The gift and roles of the Holy Spirit
God promises to convict us.
When I kept silent, my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long. For day and night your hand was heavy upon me; my strength was dried up as by the heat of the summer. I acknowledged my sin to you, and I did not cover my iniquity; I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord,” and you forgave the iniquity of my sin. Psalm 32:3-7
All promises are fulfilled in Christ.
Please read John 8:1-8.
I want to be honest with you – today’s post has been a challenge for me. I tend to focus on the love, grace, and mercy of our Lord and when I saw this promise, well…I wasn’t sure that I knew what I wanted to say or even where to begin. And then I realized that I didn’t have to. So I let go and let God do His work. I stepped outside my comfort zone, bowed my head in prayer, opened my Bible, and went straight to Google for some research. I pray God uses these words to bless you.
In my mind I’ve thought of the Holy Spirit’s role in convicting us to be what we call our conscience. I often pictured it in my mind like the cartoon images of people with a devil on one shoulder and an angel on the other. In these images the “conscience” helps the character make the right decision or makes them feel terrible for making a bad decision. But our conscience is NOT the Holy Spirit.
Because every person born, believers or not, is made in the image of God, we are all born with a conscience. We all innately know right from wrong and good from evil. The Holy Spirit, however, is not in everyone. The Holy Spirit, the third part of the Trinity, is gifted to us when we accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior. The Holy Spirit is deposited into our soul and is literally God in us.
We can perhaps think of the Spirit’s role in our life to be that of spiritual guide pointing us toward our one true north, Christ. The Spirit's job is to direct our actions with the purpose of bringing us closer to our Heavenly Father.
As we reflect on our New Testament reading we see the religious leaders of Jesus’ time after catching the women in the act of adultery. They immediately condemned her, but Jesus wanted them to understand that they were not in a spiritual position to do that. He calmly said to them, “He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first.” One by one, the Pharisees and scribes were convicted of their own sin and that none of them had the right to condemn someone else.
In these scriptures we see Jesus using His words to convict the Pharisees and scribes of their own sin. Notice that he didn’t shame them, he simply asked for them to look inward before they took action. The Holy Spirit does exactly the same thing within each of us, Sister. The Holy Spirit convicts us to look before we leap or to stop before we sin, but the Spirit doesn’t condemn us…Jesus took away the sins of the word, therefore, there is no condemnation in Christ. (Romans 8:1).
One last thought to share thanks to some insight from Amy Rogers. Yes! God promised to convict US of sin through the Holy Spirit. Therefore, we have to TRUST HIM to do that in others too. When we put ourselves in HIS place, we wind up behaving like the scribes and pharisees in John 8 who were convicted by Jesus because they were doing God’s job of convicting and therefore missed their own conviction.
Sister, Our Heavenly Father wants a personal relationship with us and sin creates a barrier between God and His children, you and me. Jesus died on the cross so that we could have an intimate and timeless fellowship with God. When we allow sin into our lives, we fall out of fellowship with Him. Praise the Lord for gifting us The Holy Spirit wants to keep that from happening!
For further reading: John 16:8; Acts 2:37; 2 Corinthians 7:9-10
Dear Father, the greatest longing of our soul is to have an intimate relationship with You. We don’t want any of our choices or mistakes to keep us away from Your love. Thank you for the gift of The Holy Spirit and the guidance that The Spirit provides. Forgive me for the times that I am distracted from Your promptings and allow sin into my life. Thank you for convicting me each and every time, so that I never stray far from You. I only want to be where you are! In Jesus’ Name, Amen.