Just walk slow. I coaxed my body off of the spin bike and gradually made my way over to the next station, wobbling like a toddler trying to make it across the room to the first thing they can land on for stability. But instead of mentally bowing out … just keep moving …I told myself. Getting in shape is painful, but it’s a good kind of pain. The feeling of accomplishment in knowing every step taken to care for the lives we’ve been given will be blessed. Just as I had teammates sailing through miles with me as a young distance runner, God has faithfully placed friends to “gym” with, and it makes all the difference. High fives and laughs over how hard things are makes everything seem just a little more possible.
We are meant to live in synch with God, through His Word and prayer. He’s placed community around us so we don’t have to go it alone, and the very Holy Spirit of God supplies strength to every Christ follower from within. This miraculous power is not anything we can accomplish on our own. The Holy Spirit is a person, just as Father and Son of our Triune God. The power available to us is able to do more than we can imagine. Joy and peace prevail in times of trial and pain, when we submit ourselves humbly to His power. He reminds and reaffirms…The Holy Spirit in us is God in us. Life within the love of Christ flows in sync with the Spirit.
The original Greek root for power in the above verse means “strength, power and ability.” It’s inherent power; power residing in a thing by virtue of its nature, or which a person or thing exerts and puts forth. Power for performing miracles. Moral power for excellence of soul.” The apostles were promised this power would come on them, and it did:
“Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where we were sitting. They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enables them” (Acts 2:2-4).
Though we don’t experience the same phenomenal scene as the apostles did that Pentecost Day, we do receive the same power of the Holy Spirit when we confess Christ as our Savior. The power in us is greater than anything this world can throw at us. It doesn’t make us invincible, or shelter us from storms, but it does ensure we never have to lose hope. We can choose to cling to the joy and peace Christ died to grant us, and live our lives to the fullest on earth, to bring glory to God.
Our home is in heaven. On the way there, as we are sanctified by the Spirit, we will no doubt experience times when our legs are wobbly and we’re coaching ourselves just to keep moving. In all of our wobbly moments and victorious climbs, we are never alone.
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“When the Holy Spirit inhabits us, he’s working on us, he’s in there, and he’s giving rise to himself, expressing joy in the Son and joy in the Father,” Pastor John Piper explains, “And I think if you grasp that, you get close to how he does everything he does in transforming human beings…” Though I coaxed my body off the spin bike and managed wobbly legs to the next station one day, if I continue to seek strength and diligently work hard with what the Lord has given me, I will become stronger.
God has made each of us intentionally, with specific purpose. Upon our surrender to Christ as our Savior, the Holy Spirit begins to peel back the layers of grime this world intentionally covers us up with, until we shine as we were meant to all along. We change when we follow Christ, but God’s love for us remains the same at the beginning of our transformation until the end when He welcomes us home to heaven. We are broken down, to be built back up stronger.
“This world will have its trouble,” Jesus ensured us in John 16:33, “but take heart, I have overcome it!” He also warned us about our enemy, who is much more dangerous than the cartoonish figure we envision on our shoulder begging us to give up, and arguing for the world’s standards over Christ’s. “The enemy comes to steal, kill and destroy,” Jesus said in John 10:10, “but I have come to give you life to the full.”
When our legs are wobbly, we can look around and know God’s placed us within a community to high-five us on the way to the next workout station. He’s faithful to strengthen us, if only we will trust Him and obey His Word. Each and every day, only God knows what lies ahead. He faithfully goes before us, preparing the way. There is no greater love than His,
“For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life” (John 3:16).
As the apostles were witnesses to the power of the Holy Spirit in their lives, so are we. The work God is doing through us is purposeful. As His people, we are set apart. The more of a work the Holy Spirit does in our lives, the more noticeably we stand out. When we are tempted to wobble through isolation and criticism of the ways we don’t fit in or make sense to the world, find a quiet place to remember we are never alone. In fact, remember: the very power of the Living God lives in us!
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Meg, freelance writer and blogger at Sunny&80, is the author of “Friends with Everyone, Friendship within the Love of Christ,” and “Surface, Unlocking the Gift of Sensitivity,” She writes about everyday life within the love of Christ. Meg earned a Marketing/PR degree from Ashland University but stepped out of the business world to stay at home and raise her two daughters, which led her to pursue her passion to write. She has led a Bible Study for Women and serves as a Youth Ministry leader in her community. Meg, a Cleveland native and lifelong Browns fan, lives by the shore of Lake Erie in Northern Ohio with her husband, two daughters, and golden doodle.