Yield to the Holy Spirit

From the slaying of the warrior-giant Goliath by a teenage David, to the rescuing of a nation from genocide by a young Esther, to an eighty-year-old man named Moses who toppled an empire and set millions of slaves free, Biblical history is replete with men and women who did amazing things for God. 

As you read one story after another, one thing becomes clear; God hardly (if ever) calls us to a work that we don’t need Him to succeed. From family to career to ministry, we need His ability in our lives.

As such, He has given us the Holy Spirit to empower us. Yet, many people do not fully understand the power and purpose of the Holy Spirit being with us. Unless we yield to the power and ability of the Holy Spirit, the Christian life can be frustrating and challenging.

Another Like Jesus?

When I was younger, I would dream about what it would be like to walk with Jesus as one of His disciples. John 21:23 says, “There are also many other things that Jesus did. Were every one of them to be written, I suppose that the world itself could not contain the books that would be written.” Much more is unsaid than said about the ministry of Jesus due to the sheer volume of His acts, so I would dream and speculate other miracles He may have done. The multitudes I would witness being healed, the blind eyes opening, the dead being raised; my overactive imagination would be on overdrive thinking of how incredible it would have been to witness it all! 

Yet in John 14:16, Jesus made an earth-shattering statement about what the Holy Spirit would do once He came: “And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever.”  The word “another” is the Greek word Allos and means “one of the same kind”, and the word “Helper” is the Greek word parakletos which means “One who is called alongside”. In essence, Jesus was saying that another Person of the same kind as Jesus is, would come alongside us and be with us forever.

The Holy Spirit is meant to do everything that Jesus would do were He physically with us. In fact, He is given the same attributes that Jesus had on Earth, teacher, advocate, counsellor, comforter. He helps us become more like Jesus through the Fruit of the Spirit as we learnt in last week’s message, and He also empowers to overcome like Jesus! 

The best part is that He is not bound by the laws of time and space like Jesus was. He is promised to be with each of us, simultaneously, forever. It is no wonder that Jesus said that it was better for Him to go, and for the Holy Spirit to come in His stead (John 16:7).

Are you Useable?

One of the most common refrains in Christian prayer is, “Lord, use me.” I have prayed that prayer many times in sincerity and a heart of surrender, feeling like there is more that God could do through me, if He would but decide to. Yet I have discovered that it is not that God does not want to use me, the question is; am I useable?

For years, David wandered the wilderness while destined to be king. For almost four decades, Moses lived in obscurity while destined to be a liberator. Joseph spent years in slavery and imprisonment while destined to rule a nation. The question was not that God did not want to use them, they had to get to the place where they were useable. Of Joseph, Psalm 105:19 says, “Until the time that his word came to pass, the word of the Lord tested him”. God’s word to Joseph tested Him to see if He was useable, and we become useable when we yield to the Holy Spirit.

Yielding to the Holy Spirit

As drivers, we are all familiar with the upside-down red triangle that is the yield sign. According to drivesmartbc.ca, A yield sign tells a driver that all other traffic present has right of way over him. Similarly, yielding to the Holy Spirit means that we acknowledge 

that He has right of way in every area of our lives. 

In my earlier days of driving, I would grow impatient of the yield sign and attempt to insert myself on to the road. The result was never good, and at times could have been fatal for me or other drivers. Unfortunately, this is an accurate of picture of what happens when we try to fulfill our call on our own, without fully yielding to the Holy Spirit. We insert our own desires and will, and the results can be disastrous.

If we want to be used by God, we must yield our plans, desires and will to the Holy Spirit. It means emptying our hands then approaching Him with those empty hands, ready to receive from Him. What is something that you are holding on to that is stopping you from completely yielding to the Holy Spirit? When you yield that thing, be it money, relationships, or sin, you will begin to see His power at work in your life.