Don’t MIss out, Daring to Believe Life is Better with the Holy Spirit.

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Believing Life is Better Lived with the Holy Spirit!

Don’t Miss Out By Jeannie Cunnion-Daring to Believe Life is Better with the Holy Spirit!

Week Five-Chapters 21-25

For a recap of week four

Benefits of the Holy Spirit

Read John 15

I can’t believe I am almost done with this study. Usually by the time I get to the end of a study I am excited for my next one. Not so with Don’t Miss Out by Jeannie Cunnion. I find myself not wanting to be done with the Holy Spirit. He is not done with me, this I am sure of. As I put this book away and turn to my next study, I will keep it close. I have a feeling I will be opening this book constantly to gain more of the Holy Spirit.

This week we covered five topics.

  • The Holy Spirit Empowers Us to Obey
  • He Makes Us More Like Jesus
  • He Produces Fruit in Our Lives
  • The Holy Spirit Fills Us
  • He Keeps Filling Us
He Empowers Us to Obey

Usually, there are rules to follow with consequences if they are not. For example, to motivated kids to follow the rules of our homes, we often entice them? A system of rewards for good behavior is what I see many parents do. Of course, that does not always work. Kids will be kids, right?

A major role of the Holy Spirit is to motivate us by making Jesus beautiful to us. He does this by awakening our hearts to all that Jesus has done for us. He also provides the power we need to fight our weaknesses. The only way to obey is to let the Spirit guide us and grant us power.

"Let the Holy Spirit guide your lives. Then you won't be doing what your sinful nature craves. The sinful nature wants to do evil, which is just the opposite of what the Spirit wants. The Spirit gives us desires that are the opposite of what the sinful nature desires. These two forces are constantly fighting each other, so you are not free to carry out your good intentions."
Galatians 5:16-17

To be obedient we must work with the Holy Spirit, yielding and submitting to His leading in our life. It means knowing Him, knowing His voice so we can choose His guidance when our weak nature wants to take control.

He Makes Us More Like Jesus

I love this the most, most importantly, there is nothing I want more than being like Jesus. I am positive that the more I get to know and love the Holy Spirit the closer Christ will be.

Sanctification. This is a word that confused and scared me for a long time, therefore, let’s talk about it. Sanctification means to be ‘set apart, for a purpose. I’ve got goosebumps on my arms. Being set aside, for a purpose that God made strictly for me, makes me a little light-headed with excitement.

The more we are led by the Holy Spirit the more we want to be more like Jesus. We can not accomplish this in our power, we must rely on the Spirit. The Spirit helps us become more of who God says we ALREADY ARE in Christ. Let that sink in! Our pursuit of Christ is the proof that the Spirit is at work in our life, purifying our desires and producing holiness in our lives.

He Produces Fruit in Our Live

The closer we grow in a relationship with the Holy Spirit, His attributes will show up more in our lives.

"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness,self-control. Against such things there are no laws." 
 Galatians 5:22-23

Growing a deeper relationship with the Spirit means we are living IN Christ. Without the power of Christ working in us and through us, we are incapable of producing the fruit that is God-glorifying. Jesus said:

Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing."
John 15:4-5
He Fills Us

Jeannie writes on four things about being filled by the Spirit. To be filled with the Spirit is:

  • to be under the influence of the Spirits presense and power
  • a command, not a suggestins
  • essential to living the full and abundant life promised to us in Christ
  • continual

People who love and are filled with the Spirit are living under its influence. They choose to live with the guidance of the Spirit in their lives, following His lead.

Be filled with the Spirit is a command for every Christian. We can not be like Christ if we do not have the Spirit living in us, therefore it is essential to be filled with Him.

Our lives will not live up to their full potential if we are not Spirit-filled. The Spirit guides us to be more like Christ. If He is not pointing us back to Jesus, we can’t possibly bear His fruit. To bear fruit for Jesus you have to be abiding IN Him.

It is a continual action to be close to the Spirit and Jesus. It is not a one-and-done type thing, for that reason, we have to continually pursue Him.

He Keeps Filling Us

Just like anything we love and want to keep, we need to spend time with it. Getting to know it more, cultivate it, making it the center of our lives. Our God is so loving to us, when we spend time with Him, He will continue to pour Himself into us. It’s all about what we choose to do. Jeannie writes it best with this step-by-step guide.

  • Confess
"If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness."
John 1:9
  • Repent
Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord 
Acts 3:9
  • Yeild

Jeannie helps by putting this one to prayer, she said:

Everything I am and everything I have is yours. I want you at the center of my life so that everything I desire and do will emanate from you. Help me submit my will to yours.
  • Abide
Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts.
Colossians 3:16
  • Ask
If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”
Luke 11:13
  • REPEAT

Friends, our spiritual journey is a journey of a lifetime. Ever growing and changing. It is a lifelong story that will continue to be told as. you grow in the Spirit.

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Believing Life is Better Lived with the Holy Spirit!

Don’t Miss Out By Jeannie Cunnion-Daring to Believe Life is Better with the Holy Spirit!

Week Four-Chapters 16-20

For a recap of Week Three.

Once again Jeannie Cunnion simply outdoes herself. If I could shake all the words of her book into a tub I would lay back and soak myself in them. I use the words bath and soak for two reasons. The word bathe, as we all know, implies something is clean. To soak means to immerse and absorb. This study has washed away many preconceived notions I had of the Holy Spirit and all I want to do is absorb all these words into my soul.

He Communicates with Us!

One thing we learned and discussed in depth was that the Holy Spirit communicates to us and speaks through us what He receives from God! To imagine that we have a direct line to God through the Holy Spirit was new and thrilling to me. It took me reading and rereading to absorb what that means. Whatever God wants us to hear is conveyed through His Spirit.

Have you ever been in a situation where you feel you have to say something? Maybe something you have been thinking about, something you feel you need to do? That, my friend, is what Jeannie calls the Nudge. The Holy Spirit is gently nudging you to do or say what God is leading you to. Sometimes it is all about being still, to hear him, to answer him.

"My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow Me."
John 10:27

The Spirit speaks to us on Jesus’s behalf, it’s an amazing gift. He knows us intimately, therefore He speaks to us however we hear him best. Possibly through worship songs, maybe through a verse that just by chance comes to your attention. Maybe you have a friend that always seems to say what you need to hear. I hear him best when I am in His word and doing my studies with my study group. Things just seem to come alive and make sense. If you are not sure how you hear the Spirit, ask Him, He will let speak to you.

He Communicates Through Us

I know it is easy to try and take care of the world (wink wink) but if we just let the Spirit in He can speak through us. There will be times when we won’t know the right thing say. Someone will need to hear words that ease their hurts or sweeps away their anger, words that need to touch their souls. These will be the times that we need to step back and let the Spirit speak through us. He will heal wounds and make anger fade if we allow him to just speak.

He Makes God’s Love Real to Us

The Holy Spirit makes God’s love real for us. He makes our hearts tender toward Jesus by always pointing us back to Him. I love how the apostle Paul wrote.

"God's love has been poured into our heards through the Holy Spirit who He has given to us." Romans 5:5

Isn’t that beautiful? I envision a gorgeous crystal pitcher filled with the Spirit as a hand from above pours it out on us. All we need to do is lift our eyes to him, accept it and let it soak in. God wants us to accept it, to accept him. The more we accept, the more intimate our relationship with God is.

He Convicts Us

Many people seem to struggle with the concept of being convicted of our sin. The Holy Spirit convicts us of three things: sin, righteousness, and judgment. Jeannie did a great job explaining this, I am going to take the liberty of using the words she writes in her book.

First, the word convict can be likened to convince. The Spirit convinces us we need Jesus because of our sin. Without the Holy Spirit, we would stay spiritually dead and separated from God. The Holy Spirits’ job is to continually show us our sin and convince us to choose obedience.

Second, is concerning righteousness. The sense of peace we experience about our salvation with the work of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit shows us our security in our Savior.

Finally, the Spirit convicts us concerning judgment. The Holy Spirit convinces us that the enemy (Satan) no longer holds authority over us. He has been judged by Jesus and lost.

He Helps Us Live in Freedom

Paul writes in Romans 8

"There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and death. Romans 8:1-2

When Jesus took our sins to the cross, he took away the shame of our sin. We no longer have to live in fear of making a mistake and losing the love of Christ. Being filled with the Spirit shapes our life, but we live in a world that is filled with temptation to lead us away from God. The enemy would love for us to pick a sin-filled life, but we don’t have to. Jesus paid for our sins on the cross, setting us FREE. I pray you will let the Holy Spirit’s power help you LIVE FREE.

Believing Life is Lived Better with the Holy Spirit!

Don’t Miss Out by Jeannie Cunnion-Daring To Believe Life is Better with the Holy Spirit!

Week Three Chapters 11-15

For a recap of Week Two

Read Acts 2

I have to be totally honest with you, as I read this book, I think that “this” week is the best. So much to learn and appreciate. Then, I read the next week’s assignments and think, no, “this is the best week. Jeannie Cunnion really dives into the Holy Spirit and makes it so easy to understand and relate to. I know these are my notes on the study and what I gleaned from them, but if you are curious to know more, I encourage you to read Don’t Miss Out. I can not remember the last time I have been so spelled bond by a book.

He Empowers Jesus!

Let’s jump right in with learning who empowered Jesus. Yup, you guessed it! The Holy Spirit is who empowered Jesus as He started His ministry. We know Jesus was baptized with water by John the Baptist. But what some may have missed is what happened next, two awe-inspiring things.

  • First, the Spirit of God filled Jesus and empowered Him for his ministry.
  • Second, God the Father affirmed Jesus as His Son in whom He was well pleased
And a voice from heaven said, "This is my son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased." Matthew 3:17
"I saw the Spirit come down from heaven as a dove and remain on him." John 1:32

Let’s talk about the significance of the dove. John noted he saw the dove ( the Holy Spirit) come down and remain on Jesus. The fascinating tidbit revolves around the word ‘remains.’ If you know anything about doves (which I really did not, only that they are white), they are very skittish. Suppose they are startled in any way; they tend to fly away quickly. To think that Jesus had such peaceful continence, that the dove felt comfortable enough to stay on him tells us how pure and sinless our Jesus is.

To Wait or Not to Wait?

Jesus told the disciples to wait until the Holy Spirit is sent to them, Luke 24:49. Just as the disciples had to wait for the Holy Spirit, Jesus too had to wait until the Spirit of God indwelled him. It’s clear to see that without the Spirit of God, Jesus could not complete his ministry. It’s wonderful to know that God’s timing is perfect.

He Gave Power to the Disciples!

So the disciples waited for the Spirit to come upon them. Not only did they wait, but they waited with joyful hearts, praising Jesus. I love that image of them waiting for the promised Spirit and had to think about my waiting on the Lord. Though I know His timing is perfect, goodness, it can be hard to wait for his answer. Let’s remember to turn to scripture when we struggle with being patient with God. Here are a few verses to help.

Romans 12:12
"Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation,be constant in prayer." 
Psalm 27:14
"Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord."
2 Peter 3:9
"The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance."
Exodus 14:14
"The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still."
Isaiah 30:18 
"Yet the Lord longs to be gracious to you; therefore he will rise up to show you compassion. For the Lord is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait for him!"
2 Peter 3:8
"But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day."
He Gave His P0wer to Peter!

Jeannie gave a great example of the power of the Holy Spirit at work, in Peter. It was Peter who struggled with being loyal to Jesus and all that He offered. He was a man who cared very much what his peers thought of him, and he was the one that denied Jesus 3 times. I share this because it is so important when you see Peter after receiving the indwelling of the Spirit. He was bold and confident, speaking with authority on Jesus.

He Gives His Power to Us!

Let’s think about that for a minute. The Spirit of God was sent to Jesus when it was his time to start his ministry. The Holy Spirit was sent to the disciples when it was time to start their ministry after Jesus ascended to heaven. When we believe in faith that Jesus is our Savior, we receive the Spirit as well. Therefore, it’s with a sense of profound peace that I know he gave his power to us as well. Did you catch that? The Spirit of God lives in US! I don’t know about you, but that stops me in my tracks and gives me goosebumps all at the same time.

But wait, there’s more; think about what the power of the Spirit does. It makes us alive with the power of God, it gives us the confidence to share the gospel with others, it has the power to transform hearts for His glory, and the power to live boldly in Jesus. Can you say Amen! I know it would be easy to be intimidated by that, but friends, if the power of the Spirit can do all that is mentioned above, let’s not fear it; let’s rest in faith that He will give us the power to activate him in our lives.

Knowing he lives in us, we must make Him feel welcome in our lives. Just because He lives in us doesn’t mean he is fully at work in us. We need to spend time in prayer with him, asking for his guidance.

He is the Spirit of Truth!

One important role the Holy Spirit plays is to lead us to the truth, Jesus! The Spirit will always lead us back to Jesus. He is our personal guide to know Jesus more intimately. The Spirit will never lie. He is completely trustworthy and faithful. He guides us in the Truth. I have to say; I never again want to walk this world without the best guide, the Holy Spirit.

I pray you will welcome him into your life as your guide for this turbulent world we live in.

"I am the way and the truth and life."John 14:6

Believing life is better lived with the Holy Spirit!

Don’t Miss Out by Jeannie Cunnion-Daring to believe life is better with the Holy Spirit!

Week Two- Chapters 6-10

For a recap of Week One.

Please read Ephesians 1

He is Equal

We continue this week with more insight into who the Holy Spirit is. Not only did we see that He is Equal to God and Jesus, but he is essential. There is no way we can live the life made solely for us without the Holy Spirit. Why do you say, why do I need the Holy Spirit? Is Jesus not enough? I admit I went many years believing I had all I needed because I was saved and Jesus lives in me.

I absolutely love how Jeannie answered those questions. She reminds us that we are trying to be a witness for Jesus, and to do that without the power of Christ–the Holy Spirit–we would be frustrated and discouraged.

Did you catch that? The POWER of Christ, the Holy Spirit, is within us. To try to be as like Jesus as we all strive to be, with his POWER, to do all things for HIS glory, would be impossible without HIS power. The Holy Spirit.

This is why the Holy Spirit is essential. When you put your trust in Jesus, the Spirit of God is fully available to you.

Jeannie uses a quote from Robert Morris.

“Having the Holy Spirit’s power available to us isn’t the same thing as making ourselves available to the Holy Spirit’s life-changing power. We have to yield. Our stubborn, prideful selves have to submit. We have to receive.”

He is Better Than Self-Help

If I were to ask, have you ever read a book meant to change something about yourself, what would your answer be? I’ll be honest and say I wanted to fix myself as much as the next person over the years. A friend would tell me how great a certain book was and how it helped her; of course, I had to run out to get it, hoping it would help me too. It’s no surprise to me that I did not make it through one of those many books. Truthfully, I never read one where I agreed with the concept of the ‘self-help’ that was being given.

The author would say one thing that I could identify with than follow up with many things I disagreed with. Many of these books boast of methods to help people feel better, mainly by concentrating on themselves. Friends, if we put all this effort into fixing our problems, we miss something amazing. We miss that the Almighty God indwells us and is just waiting for us to let him empower us to fight out battles in HIS might for HIS name.

No book is necessary when we have the fixer of all wrongs breathing life into us. Or should I say, breathing HIS life into us?

He Is Our Guarantee

To be given a guarantee on something is to be able to trust. To rely on what has been given to you. The Holy Spirit is our guarantee that we belong to God’s heavenly kingdom. We are daughters of the King. He gave up his life for us, and he will not let us go.

"When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God's possession-to the praise of his glory." Ephisians 1:13-14

We are sealed up with the Holy Spirit, with the promise of eternal life in heaven with our Heavenly Father. This humbles me and fills me with such joy; I weep with gratitude and peace. Peace because I know my future is secure in Him.

Now it is God who makes both us and you stand firm in Christ. He annointed us, set his seal of ownership on us, and put his spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come. 2 Corinthians 1:21-22
He Makes Much of Jesus
Jesus said, "He will glorify me because it is from me that he will receive what he will make known to you. All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will receive from me what he will make known to you. John 16:14-15

I loved how Jeannie wrote that the Holy Spirit is the one who woos us to Jesus. I love that word, woos! That is how I feel when I think of my feelings for Jesus, I am wood by him. I want to be with him. To know him is to love him. And he loves me.

One goal of the Spirit is to put the focus back on Jesus, always leading us back to him. That is an amazing honor to do what the disciples did, to point others to the goodness of our God. With the Holy Spirit guiding us, we will help to lead people to Jesus as well.

He Authored the Bible

If you are like so many of us, you may answer Jesus’s disciples if asked who wrote the Bible. That is technically correct; they are credited with writing it. What most of us have missed is that the Holy Spirit has empowered everything they say. As Jesus intended the Spirit to do, He breathed the words of the Bible into existence.

For prophecy never had its origin in the human will, but prophets, though human, spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit. 2 Peter 1:21

Men communicated the words of the Bible under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. I love sitting back and digesting that. Human authors were writing and speaking what was shared with them from God’s Spirit. This makes scripture the faultless Word of God.

Let’s talk about God’s Word and the necessity of having it in our life. God’s Word is like my navigation in a world with so many twists and turns that it is easy to get lost, even when you are in your own neighborhood. The Word for me is a set of instructions that, without nothing, can be built. I need the Word like I need a tall glass of water on a hot August day.

Through God’s Word, he gives understanding. We know God’s Word is alive, but we also know it can be difficult to understand. We need to ask the Holy Spirit to help us understand it AND apply it as we study. I can remember when I would open the bible and read, and unfortunately, closing it up because what I read was not clear to me.

I know many of us have felt that, but I can assure you that by seeking Jesus with a sincere heart, the Holy Spirit will open the bible up to you.

So, I leave you this week with a heartfelt prayer. That the Spirit will open your heart as you read the bible, that a newfound sense of clarity and understanding fill you as you seek Him.

Believing life is better lived with the Holy Spirit!

Don’t Miss Out by Jeannie Cunnion-Daring to believe life is better with the Holy Spirit!

Week One- Introduction thru Chapter 5

Please read John 16

Last week, I finished our study, Truthfilled by Ruth Chou Simons, and I am thrilled to share my new study with you. This one is different for me as it is a book we are reading and discussing. Not my normal study. II am the type that loves a good thick workbook with my study with questions that lead me to dig into my bible.

My passion over the last few years have turned to obedience to my Lord. More recently, I have become fixated on the Holy Spirit. Who is He? What does He do, and how is he meant to work in my life. Therefore, my new study won’t be a big surprise. It’s Don’t Miss Out-Daring to believe life is better with the Holy Spirit by Jeannie Cunnion.

How my walk began

The way my walk has gone over the years, I am blessed to look back and see growth! Real spiritual growth. I like to joke and say my spiritual growth is similar to an onion……you know, layers! I grew up in a home where we went to church every week, were baptized, and had our first communion and confirmation. I truly believed in God and that Jesus died on the cross, but beyond that, there was not a lot of thought. As a result, there was a huge hole in my faith. I realize now I did not have the full picture, or should I say the full Trinity? 🙂

Relationship with Jesus

The one thing I was missing was the personal relationship with Jesus. I was lucky after years of study to correct that, but I will be honest and say I did not know the Holy Spirit. Yes, that’s right, as we will see in a bit, he is a person. That is why over the last few years I have been learning more about Him.

This study is going to help me do with the Holy Spirit what happened with Jesus. I will spend time with him, learn his purpose, and learn to love him for himself. It will be exciting to know his purpose and how it benefits us.

In the first week, we read and discussed who he is.

Who is the Holy Spirit?
  • He is to our advantage
  • He makes his home in us
  • Never leaves us
  • He is God
  • Last but not least, He is a person

One of the things I took away from him being to our advantage was that he is our helper. The Holy Spirit is God in us. Isn’t that the most exhilarating thought you can have? It completely blows my mind that I walk around with a piece of God in me!! Do I hear an Amen!

But now I am going to him who sent me, and none of you asks me, "Where are you going?" But because I have said these things to you, sorrow has filled your heart. Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you. John 16:5-7
How he helps us.

With Jesus leaving, he was able to send us our amazing Helper. Sit back and let that soak in; think about those words. HE LIVES IN US! We must remember He lives in us!

And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you John 14:16-17

Did you notice verse 16? That he will be with us forever, he will never leave us. He is in our souls forever. He will be our constant companion.

And teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age. Matthew 28:20
Learning who he is!

I will be bold and say I never did see the significance of the Holy Spirit. I really didn’t know who he was, nor did I give him the acknowledgment he rightly deserves. My heart nearly exploded when all the dot’s connected for me. HE IS GOD! I have known about the holy trinity all my life, but my lack of knowledge robbed him of his holiness.

As Jeannie says in her book, the Holy Spirit is God. God the Father, God the Son, and God the Spirit coexist as the eternal (no beginning and no end), omnipresent (existing everywhere at all times), omniscient (knowing everything), omnipotent (all-powerful), Godhead.

In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters. Genesis 1:1-2
He has a purpose to fulfill!

We also discussed his purpose. God, the Holy Spirit, does specific work in us. Jeannie quoted J.I. Packer as saying,

“The Christians life in all its aspects–intellectual and ethical, devotional and relational, upsurging in worship and outgoing in witness, is supernatural; only the Spirit can initiate it and sustain it. So apart from Him, not only will there be no lively believers and no lively congregations, there will be no believers and no congregations at all.”

That is quite a statement that I too, wanted to share, think about it. Jeannie challenged us to look in the mirror every day and remind ourselves that God Almighty is the one who indwells us by HIS HOLY SPIRIT. He is the power of God inside us.

In his image!

I know for many people, the Spirit was seen as a dove, rushing wind, or maybe a burning flame. It is easy to see him as a symbol, but it’s important to know that he is a person like God and Jesus.

Then God said, "Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea, and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground." So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. Genesis 1:26-27

Read the first sentence of the verse. Did you catch the ‘us’ in there? We were created in the image of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Spirit, all of them their own person.

Please read John 16

Last week, I finished our study, Truthfilled by Ruth Chou Simons, and I am thrilled to share my new study with you. This one is different for me as it is a book we are reading and discussing. Not my typical study. I am the type that loves a good thick workbook with questions that lead me to dig into my bible.

My passion over the last few years have turned to obedience to my Lord. More recently, I have become fixated on the Holy Spirit. Who is He? What does He do, and how is he meant to work in my life. Therefore, my new study won’t be a big surprise. It’s Don’t Miss Out-Daring to believe life is better with the Holy Spirit by Jeannie Cunnion.

How my walk began

The way my walk has gone over the years, I am blessed to look back and see growth! Real spiritual growth. I like to joke and say my spiritual growth is similar to an onion……you know, layers! I grew up in a home where we went to church every week, were baptized, and had our first communion and confirmation. I truly believed in God and that Jesus died on the cross, but there was no real commitment beyond that. As a result, there was a huge hole in my faith. I realize now I did not have the full picture, or should I say the full Trinity? 🙂

Relationship with Jesus

The one thing I was missing was the personal relationship with Jesus. I was lucky after years of study to correct that, but I will be honest and say I did not know the Holy Spirit. Yes, that’s right, as we will see in a bit, he is a person. That is why over the last few years I have been learning more about Him.

This study is going to help me do with the Holy Spirit what happened with Jesus. I will spend time with him, learn his purpose, and learn to love him for himself. It will be exciting to know his purpose and how it benefits us.

In the first week, we read and discussed who he is.

Who is the Holy Spirit?
  • He is to our advantage
  • He makes his home in us
  • Never leaves us
  • He is God
  • Last but not least, He is a person

One of the things I took away from him being to our advantage was that he is our helper. The Holy Spirit is God in us. Isn’t that the most exhilarating thought you can have? It completely blows my mind that I walk around with a piece of God in me!! Do I hear an Amen!

But now I am going to him who sent me, and none of you asks me, "Where are you going?" But because I have said these things to you, sorrow has filled your heart. Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you. John 16:5-7
How he helps us.

With Jesus leaving, he was able to send us our amazing Helper. Sit back and let that soak in; think about those words. HE LIVES IN US! We must remember He lives in us!

And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you John 14:16-17

Did you notice verse 16? That he will be with us forever, he will never leave us. He is in our souls forever. He will be our constant companion.

And teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age. Matthew 28:20
Learning who he is!

I will be bold and say I never did see the significance of the Holy Spirit. I really didn’t know who he was, nor did I give him the acknowledgment he rightly deserves. My heart nearly exploded when all the dot’s connected for me. HE IS GOD! I have known about the holy trinity all my life, but my lack of knowledge robbed him of his holiness.

As Jeannie says in her book, the Holy Spirit is God. God the Father, God the Son, and God the Spirit coexist as the eternal (no beginning and no end), omnipresent (existing everywhere at all times), omniscient (knowing everything), omnipotent (all-powerful), Godhead.

In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters. Genesis 1:1-2
He has a purpose to fulfill!

We also discussed his purpose. God, the Holy Spirit, does specific work in us. Jeannie quoted J.I. Packer as saying,

“The Christians life in all its aspects–intellectual and ethical, devotional and relational, upsurging in worship and outgoing in witness, is supernatural; only the Spirit can initiate it and sustain it. So apart from Him, not only will there be no lively believers and no lively congregations, there will be no believers and no congregations at all.”

That is quite a statement that I, too, wanted to share, think about it. Jeannie challenged us to look in the mirror every day and remind ourselves that God Almighty is the one who indwells us by HIS HOLY SPIRIT. He is the power of God inside us.

In his image!

I know for many people, the Spirit was seen as a dove, rushing wind, or maybe a burning flame. It is easy to see him as a symbol, but it’s important to know that he is a person like God and Jesus.

Then God said, "Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea, and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground." So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. Genesis 1:26-27

Read the first sentence of the verse. Did you catch the ‘us’ in there? We were created in the image of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Spirit, all of them their own person.