|Posted on September 3, 2020 at 11:20 AM|
In the middle of all the current chaos of social unrest, political division, and pandemic fears there is a “still, small voice” of hope that can comfort and direct all who will listen. It is the voice of Jesus expressed by his indwelling Spirit in every believer who will be still long enough to hear it. It offers both comfort and direction to those who are willing to trust it. It is the personal assurance and work of the Comforter, the Spirit of Truth. Despite the abounding deceptions and lies in today’s world the promise of Jesus concerning the Holy Spirit not only being with us but also living in us is our greatest source of hope.
Just before he left us in this world Jesus promised his disciples He would send them another Comforter to be with them and in them. He fulfilled that promise on the day of his resurrection from the dead when he breathed on them and said, “Receive ye the Holy Spirit” (John 20: 22). From that time forward all who are born of the Spirit by faith in Jesus are given the indwelling Spirit of Christ to teach them, remind them, guide them into all truth, and make Jesus real to them. It is the indwelling Spirit of God that grants us the ability to hear the voice of Jesus in our everyday lives and gives us the power to complete the mission he gives each of us in this world.
Although we have been given the gift of the indwelling Spirit, not all of us learn to appreciate and use that gift. Just last night I gave my grandson a rifle for his 12th birthday to use for his shooting competitions next year. Although he has the gift it will do him no good at all if he chooses to leave it in the closet and never use it (no real chance of that happening). Likewise, we have been given the gift of the indwelling Spirit of Christ, but we must choose to use that gift to fully appreciate it and put it to use in our lives. Learning to hear and follow the personal leadership of the indwelling Spirit in our everyday lives will give us the confidence and boldness we need to face these trying times.
After 40-plus years of pastoral counseling I have become somewhat “unshockable” when it comes to the problems people get into in this life. No matter what the issue is or how bad the circumstances the basic question is not what I think or say, but what God is saying that counts. Much of my counsel concerns helping Christians learn to listen to that still, small voice so they can receive the comfort and direction Jesus promised. Because Jesus is the Counselor we must learn to hear his voice to receive the comfort and direction we need, especially in this chaotic world. This does not mean that human comfort and advice is not needed or useful, but that it must give precedence to the voice of Jesus.
Receiving the comfort and direction from the Father has always been desperately needed but even more so in these chaotic times we are living through. As we are personally assured of our own worth we are empowered to love and encourage others in our homes, on our jobs, and in our communities. To be confident in the power of God in ourselves gives us hope for those around us as well. Listen to his voice.