Last week, I wrote to you concerning areas that affect your relationship with the Holy Spirit, and then I wrote prayers after which you could model your own. This article is the second and final piece of “Prayers of the Holy Spirit”. The idea behind this two-part post is simple: to draw you closer to the Person of the Holy Spirit by getting you to think in key directions while sealing said thinking with prayer.
So let’s continue now to together meditate on the Word of God and sincerely pray. We will pray that we might be people who…
Believe His Truth…
Embrace His Gifts…
Be Aware of His Presence…
Bear His Fruit…
Believe His Truth
Perhaps the most important work of the Holy Spirit, of course outside of His participation in the miracle of salvation as the Father’s seal of promise, is His convincing the believer to think according to truth.
“For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.” – Romans 8:15
The Holy Spirit stirs faith within the soul, enabling the believer to exchange the fear that comes with deception for the joy that comes with truth. While we live with the constant need to resist temptation and rebuke demonic powers, for the mature believer, the greatest battle isn’t against sin or the demonic realm. For the mature believer, the greatest battle is the fight of faith – the simple battle to believe God’s truth over every lie.
“Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.” – 1 Timothy 6:12
And this is where the Holy Spirit commits to that vital role of convincing you according to God’s truth. He is the One Who gives us the unction to cry “Abba Father”! He bestows upon us the boldness to believe in the completeness of salvation. He helps us to identify as God’s, securing forever in our hearts the assurance of God’s blessed salvation.
If ever we are to do, become, and have all that God desires, we must choose to believe His truth. Even when our own flesh – by which I mean emotions and doubts – tells us convincing and powerfully persuasive lies, we must, with the grace of the Holy Spirit, cast down those thoughts which contradict truth.
“Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;” – 2 Corinthians 10:5
Believing His truth is in part an act of faith and in part an act of discipline. We must allow the Holy Spirit to speak to us and cause us to dispose of those thoughts that drag us toward deception. We must believe His truth to know victory.
Pray this prayer:
Holy Spirit, help me to believe your truth, even when the lies seem so convincing. When I am confronted with deception, help me to recognize it and defeat it with your Word. Reveal to me the areas in which I am being deceived in my own life. I commit to casting down imaginations and everything that would contradict what you say and think about me. Holy Spirit, thank you for helping me to think according to your truth. In the saving name of Jesus I pray. Amen.
Embrace His Gifts
Paul the apostle taught the Corinthian Church about the special abilities that the Holy Spirit distributes to each individual believer. He emphasized that He did not want them to be ignorant about these abilities.
“Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I would not have you ignorant.” – 1 Corinthians 12:1
In his letter, Paul continued to teach on the spiritual gifts by distinguishing the spiritual gifts of the Holy Spirit from the pagan abilities of the occult.
“Ye know that ye were Gentiles, carried away unto these dumb idols, even as ye were led. Wherefore I give you to understand, that no man speaking by the Spirit of God calleth Jesus accursed: and that no man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost.” – 1 Corinthians 12:2-3
Paul did not want the Corinthians to confuse the spiritual gifts with their former pagan power displays. He gave them this “test” to help them distinguish between pagan power and God’s power: The spirits that don’t point to Jesus as Lord are not spirits of God. Only the Holy Spirit points to Jesus as Lord.
By giving them that clear instruction, Paul the apostle gave to the Corinthians a safety net that would keep them from venturing again into idolatry.
Despite this clear distinction given by Paul the Apostle, many believers still to this day have trouble identifying the work of the Holy Spirit through His gifts. Instead of confusing occult power for the power of the Holy Spirit, most believers today confuse the power of the Holy Spirit with demonic activity. In other words, many portions of the Church are labeling the Holy Spirit’s work as heretic activity. This is sad, indeed. For we know that the source of the spiritual gifts is truly divine.
“Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. And there are differences of administrations, but the same Lord. And there are diversities of operations, but it is the same God which worketh all in all.” – 1 Corinthians 12:4-6
The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit each played a role in assigning to each believer a spiritual gift. And Paul the apostle gave us a clear standard by which we can discern all displays of power: if the power is backed by the message of the gospel and points to Jesus as Lord, it is of God. Again, despite this very simple standard, many, likely out of paranoia, reject the gifts of the Holy Spirit. When we do so, we stifle the effectiveness of Christ’s bride.
“But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal.” – 1 Corinthians 12:7
We must not be so afraid of error that we rush to the extreme of powerlessness. The safety net is Jesus Himself, and we can have confidence in that safety, confidence in the fact that if we keep Him as the focus, we are safe.
Whether you are adamant or apathetic and whatever your hesitation may be, there is no good reason to reject the gifts of the Holy Spirit. When explaining such rejection, many often point to some bizarre display that they witnessed at some church service. They will cite that display as their reason for rejecting the gifts of the Spirit. They will say something like, “Well, I once saw a man barking like a dog” or “I saw people acting out of order.” And they, for some odd reason, think that the existence of the counterfeit is a good reason to reject the genuine. Odd, isn’t it?
But why would you want any less than all for which Christ died to give you? Don’t punish the Church or the Holy Spirit for something foolish someone else did. Fear not. The Holy Spirit is not silly or senseless. He is classy, elegant, regal, and beautiful.
Open yourself to embrace His gifts today.
Pray this prayer:
Holy Spirit, I’m sorry for rejecting your gifts. Forgive me for being so suspicious of you when you did no wrong. I receive anything you want to give to me. Without hesitation or reservation, I embrace my spiritual gifts. Thank you for them. In the generous name of Jesus I pray. Amen.
Be Aware of His Presence
Sometimes, it can feel as though God is a million miles away. But I ask you this: how can God come any closer than within you?
“What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?” – 1 Corinthians 6:19
The key to experiencing a moment-by-moment closeness with the Holy Spirit is not emotions. Who cares if you feel Him or not? Feelings change all the time. The key is not in getting the Holy Spirit to come close to you; the key is becoming aware of the presence that is already within you. This presence is, of course, the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit.
You may not always see Him at work in your life. You may not always feel Him close to you. However, believer, you must not live by feelings, but by faith. Your faith is based on the unchanging Word of God.
If you will commit to simply keeping the Holy Spirit in mind as often as possible, you will strengthen your daily walk with the Lord. You can experience His presence all throughout your day, and you can begin to walk in this awareness as soon as this very moment!
Pray this prayer:
Holy Spirit, I know that you dwell within me. I know that you are ever-present and that you are always with me. Help me to accept the fact of your nearness despite what I feel. I commit to moment-by-moment fellowship with You. Help me to be aware of you at all times. In the unchanging name of Jesus I pray. Amen.
Bear His Fruit
The greatest sign of having been filled with the Holy Spirit is the way you live your life.
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.” – Galatians 5:22-24
Speaking in tongues is not the primary evidence of having received the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Neither is the gift of healing, the gift of prophecy, or any other supernatural display of power.
The primary evidence is the fruit of the Spirit. These fruits, when they are displayed in your life, make you look like Jesus. And Christlikeness is our goal. Don’t be dull, bitter, angry, impatient, or lifeless. Let the joy and peace of the Holy Spirit flood your being and make you a magnetic witness for Christ.
Let His fruit grow in your life.
Pray this prayer:
Holy Spirit, I want to be like Jesus. I want You, in the place of my image, to bring about the lovely and majestic countenance of Christ. Help me to bear Your fruit. Give me Your peace, love, joy, patience, kindness, goodness, faith, humility, and temperance. Thank You for Your work in my life. In the life-giving name of Jesus I pray. Amen.