This past week the message was from 1 Corinthians 2:6-16, where Paul writes that there is wisdom, a deep, even mysterious wisdom, that can only be given by the Holy Spirit. Being part of a Baptist Church my whole life the Holy Spirit is often forgotten, which is truly a tragedy. According to this passage He is the only reason I am able to understand the Gospel at all. The Prophets of old (Joel 2; Ezekiel 36) spoke of when the Spirit would come and change the hearts of stone and giving man the ability to obey the commandments of God.
We have been given the Spirit so that we may know God.
At our small group last night we talked through this passage and how much we need the Spirit. It is shameful how little I recognize His work in my life. When I slow down enough to think about it, He is the only reason I am able to know God. I am amazed at my ability to make it through a whole day without recognizing my absolute desperation and utter dependence on the Holy Spirit having been poured out on me, working holiness in me, and sealing me for the day of the Lord.
Then something crazy happened last night. The guys and the girls split up as we usually do for our accountability. And during that time, with no warning, we felt the beautiful presence of the Spirit among us. It was terrible and wonderful as we sat there overwhelmed, even consumed. We shared our struggles, our victories, our hopes and dreams. We confessed to one another, encouraged one another, and spoke deeply about Him who saves. We just bragged about God and amazing He is in our lives in spite of all our failures. It grew later and later and we lingered all the more not wanting it to end. It was bittersweet when we finally departed but we resolved that we didn’t want anything less than that.
It showed in me how little I really acknowledge that beautiful Presence within me and the person He actually makes me. That Forgotten Person in my life has never forgotten me. I am thankful. But I cannot imagine trying to do life without brothers and sisters who are defined by this same Person.
I pray that all can experience community and fellowship. Church is more than a building, more than a human institution, more than a political movement. It is a people, a community, the very temple of the Holy Spirit. The Christian Life was never meant to be lived alone, but praise God that His Spirit gathers. How sweet it is to live in fellowship with the saints. When we not only recognize that truth but truly live it we experience the greatest thing of all: His Presence and Pleasure.