Plan B – God’s plan to fix a broken world
What’s really broken?
Any action taken by humanity apart from God’s goodness is destructive
God’s 5 Steps to fix what is broken
Step #4 | The Holy Spirit
Would you believe it if I said it was actually better for us that Jesus left the earth and returned to heaven? If we say we love Him, how could we ever say that?! Why isn’t it better to have Him here with us? … Because Jesus himself said it wasn’t, that’s why!
“If you love me, keep my commands. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever— the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.
None of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’ Rather, you are filled with grief because I have said these things. But very truly I tell you, it is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you.
So what is the Holy Spirit?
Well … I’ll admit, if I was going for “easy,” this question wouldn’t have made the cut. How do I explain something to you that you’ve never seen? We’ve all experienced wind before, but how would you explain it to someone who has never experienced it themselves?
Maybe a good starting point is to think of the Holy Spirit as a guide. A guide, like those people who lead trips down the roaring white waters in Colorado. There are a lot of ways in which that comparison falls infinitely short, but I believe it’s something we could relate to. The Holy Spirit who truly knows the river that is your life, and acts as a guide as you navigate it. To be fair, I’d watch the video to see this illustrated in more depth, but here are a few verses that speak to who the Holy Spirit is, and what it does.
However, as it is written: “What no eye has seen, what no ear has heard, and what no human mind has conceived” — the things God has prepared for those who love him — these are the things God has revealed to us by his Spirit. The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. For who knows a person’s thoughts except their own spirit within them? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. What we have received is not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may understand what God has freely given us. This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, explaining spiritual realities with Spirit-taught words. The person without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God but considers them foolishness, and cannot understand them because they are discerned only through the Spirit. The person with the Spirit makes judgments about all things, but such a person is not subject to merely human judgments, for, “Who has known the mind of the Lord so as to instruct him?” But we have the mind of Christ.
1 Corinthians 2:9-16
I love the part that mentions the Spirit searching the “deep things of God.” It makes me think of my amazing wife. The single person on the face of the planet who I know best, and who knows me best. But as deeply as I know her and she knows me, we do not share the same heart. We cannot always know what the other is thinking or feeling … but the Holy Spirit and God do. What a great picture of relationship. What a powerful thing! And this is the very same Holy Spirit that lives inside every believer and follower of Jesus Christ!
So how do I follow the Holy Spirit?
Answering this question might be a bit “easier” than the one we just considered, but there’s still so much to it. There’s a few verses in the book of Acts that are a really great starting place, and I’ve got a few very practical things I’d like to share with you from those verses.
-[ If you’re doing it right, it should be a little scary
“And now, compelled by the Spirit, I am going to Jerusalem, not knowing what will happen to me there.
Not only is it a bit odd to think that you have this Spirit living inside of you, but now think about following wherever that thought, or voice, or guide tells you to go. Have you heard stories of people selling it all to follow a leading of the Spirit? Have you ever experienced that prompting thought or voice?
-[ Make sure it’s the Spirit and not your own personal crazy
“And now, compelled by the Spirit, I am going to Jerusalem, not knowing what will happen to me there. I only know that in every city the Holy Spirit warns me that prison and hardships are facing me.
We have some crazy people at Life Bridge, and we love them all! And, in the course of human history, there have been some crazy things that people have come up with in the name of “the Spirit told me to do it.” How about this simple litmus test? Rarely is the Spirit going to lead us to a place where we’re making more money, or things get easier or better for us personally. I believe following the Holy Spirit looks an awful lot more like picking up your cross and following Jesus. Following Jesus into an uncomfortable place, or doing things you’d really rather not do. In the end, the places you go or the things you do in following the Spirit might look an awful lot like “crazy” to you, or to others around you. But “crazy” itself is not the gold standard in following the Holy Spirit.
-[ The Spirit brings God glory, not you
However, I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the good news of God’s grace.
The Spirit exists to bring glory to God, not to give you a better life, make you a happier person or grow your 401K. At the end of the day, if wherever you go or whatever you do doesn’t draw the attention to God and make His name greater, it’s likely not from God’s Spirit within you.
How is it possible that we are better off with Jesus not still being here, walking among us? Using His own words, it is because the Father sent us an Advocate, a guide, the Holy Spirit. And when we give it all up to simply follow Him, we’ll find ourselves in some amazing places, doing some amazing things for His glory. The Holy Spirit … an essential part of God’s plan to fix our broken world.
Our prayer is that you believe in Jesus, choose to follow Him, and experience the indescribable power of the Holy Spirit in your life!