It’s still Eastertide. If you’re a longtime follower of my blog, you might recall that I’ve reflected on this theme in prior years. Eastertide is fifty days long, but we tend to get focused on family graduations and summer plans and lose touch with the fact that the church is still in celebration mode—or ought to be. This year, as I pondered that idea, I thought of something new for me: how we can tend to forget that the Holy Spirit dwells within us.
You see, after Jesus’ resurrection, he visited with the disciples on numerous occasions in multiple locations. Scripture tells us he entered locked rooms in Jerusalem, traveled the road to Emmaus, and even made it up to Galilee to surprise fishermen early one morning. He was with his followers on occasion, but not all the time. We read in Acts that Jesus promised the Holy Spirit to the apostles “not many days from now,” and then he left them.
The apostles then found themselves living in liminal space—that holy in-between time that bridges what has been and not yet. I imagine the apostles knew they couldn’t return to life as it was before Jesus. After all, Jesus had told them to wait. He wasn’t done with them. He said they would “receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you.” But it hadn’t happened yet. They didn’t know when it would come, what it would mean, or how it would impact their lives.
Christians are an Eastertide people, but I think a lot of us don’t really know what that means. We go to church, we study scripture, but do we embrace the power of the Holy Spirit within us and live as Jesus’ witnesses to those around us?
I think some of us have trouble even believing that the Holy Spirit dwells within us—yet that clearly is promised to every Christian. The apostle Paul states this emphatically in his first letter to the Corinthians: “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, which you have from God, and that you are not your own?”
Do you embrace that truth? Do you live as a vessel of infinite power and love? We don’t have to cower behind locked doors. We don’t have to wait in liminal space. We have the Holy Spirit living within us. I embrace that reality by looking inward for inspiration and trusting what comes (such as the ideas in this blog post). I listen to the Holy Spirit when I meet with people in spiritual guidance. I’ve followed the Spirit’s guidance in saying yes to many ministry opportunities over the years.
How do you listen for the voice of the Holy Spirit within you? How can you embrace your God-given power to proclaim the love of Christ in a world that desperately needs hope?
I listen for the voice of the Holy Spirit within by desiring and asking to hear it, by accepting messages I haven’t (knowingly) sought, by seeing it sometimes prayed for, sometimes not, and by being aware yet clueless, welcoming, to receive hints, clear statements, questions; by saying, “Thank you” whether or understand or not.
Thank you, Joy, for sharing these windows into your spiritual life. I’m a firm believer that sharing such things helps broaden our understanding of what’s possible for all of us. I’m so glad you have these ways of connecting with Spirit.
Shirin, I find the Holy Spirit in the silence otherwise how else will the Spirit speak to me? In the past, I’ve learned to recognize the prompting of the Holy Spirit especially in my spouse who has this awesome connection when it comes to listening to the Holy Spirit. We proclaim the love of Christ every day by how we live our lives. It is not about saying I’m going to do this but about doing it i.e. embracing others and accepting them. I pray and believe that the love of Christ will triumph although we may not see it in our lifetimes. In our society, the Holy Spirit is constantly rejected. People are afraid to be alone with their thoughts or a prompting by the Holy Spirit.
Thank you for reminding us that they are good people in the world.
You’re welcome, Eddie, and thanks for engaging with me and sharing your experience. Yes, people are so afraid these days to be alone with their thoughts or to trust promptings and invitations they can’t scientifically validate. I’m glad you have both silence and spouse on your team!