Tuesday, September 19, 2023
Some of us run ourselves ragged in an effort to be noticed and validated. It is an insane race with no end in sight. So often we have distorted thinking about our worth. Misguided messages, both real and imagined, create an environment in our minds which is constantly telling us “More is better.” But when is more enough? And … “More of what?”
Even in our spiritual lives, distorted thinking can surface. For me, the ability to rest in the truth of God’s word has been easier said than done. To know, understand, and comprehend the love God offers hasn’t been an easy lesson to learn, much less master. I know I can’t be the only one struggling with this, but Ephesians offers us this assurance.
13 And now you Gentiles have also heard the truth, the Good News that God saves you. And when you believed in Christ, he identified you as his own by giving you the Holy Spirit, whom he promised long ago. 14 The Spirit is God’s guarantee that he will give us the inheritance he promised and that he has purchased us to be his own people. He did this so we would praise and glorify him.
The dilemma remains until the realization arrives that everything God offers his children is a gift. Regardless of the “whys” that bring us to a place of recognizing our need for the Savior, the gift God offers us is perfect and complete.
To possess and maintain this mindset—that God’s gifts are free—is not a one and done exercise. Unhealthy thoughts and unsolicited commentaries can disrupt what we know to be true on the best of days. On the worst of days, stinkin’ thinkin’, lies, and spiritual laziness can easily take over. Without intentionality, thoughts of needing to do something to receive the Holy Spirit may creep in. It is important to know and believe that there is genuinely no earning when it comes to receiving God’s gifts.
Let me ask you this one question: Did you receive the Holy Spirit by obeying the law of Moses? Of course not! You received the Spirit because you believed the message you heard about Christ.
One weapon to battle distorted spiritual thinking is to know God through his Word. God reveals himself and his plan for us when we choose to spend time reading the Bible and praying. It is my spiritual posture as a Christ follower that assures me God’s spirit dwells within me. Nothing more. Nothing less. The same can be true of you.
Have you received the Holy Spirit? Do you understand the role of the Holy Spirit in the lives of Christ followers? In what ways do you struggle with knowing and accepting God’s genuine love?
Increase your understanding about who the Holy Spirit is. Learn about the four distinctive roles of the Holy Spirit in the life of Christ followers.
Join a Finally Free Group this fall to learn more about salvation and how, when you accept Christ as your Savior, you will finally be free.
Lord, I am grateful you don’t stand on the sidelines of my life, demanding I do more in order to earn your love. Help me avoid the trap of performance—thinking what I do overrides who I am in relationship with you. Help me focus on and understand who I am as your child. Thank you for nudging me to deeply know you and your plans for me. Thank you for fully accepting me in my current state. Help me to offer that same acceptance to others within my community and in my daily interactions. Empower me to lovingly share these same truths with others in my life. In Jesus’ name, amen.
Series Theme Verse:
“But when the Father sends the Advocate as my representative—that is, the Holy Spirit—he will teach you everything and will remind you of everything I have told you.
This post was written by Karen Peck, a regular contributor to the LivingItOut Devotional.