Category Archives: Holy Spirit

Attention to Detail

I always wondered why it was important to know why the framework of the tabernacle was made of acacia wood and how many cubits long each piece was.  Why was it important to know what colors of yarn were used to make Aaron’s turban.  Why was it important for us to know which direction the cherubim faced?  These are the details Moses believed were important for us to know, but why?

I’ve always wondered that as I came through the passages of these intricate details of the construction of the tabernacle, ark, lampstands, temple, etc.  You never hear anyone tell you they were memorizing Exodus 36:20-23

20 Then he made the upright frames for the tabernacle of acacia wood. 21 Ten cubits was the length of a frame, and a cubit and a half the breadth of each frame. 22 Each frame had two tenons for fitting together. He did this for all the frames of the tabernacle. 23 The frames for the tabernacle he made thus: twenty frames for the south side.

Why is it important for us to know this?  God inspired Moses to write these words for us.  To many… these passages are nothing but detailed historical references, but they are a part of the Holy Scriptures which means they are more than what they may appear from the surface.  These are the inspired words of God written by Moses.

As I meditated on these scriptures, asking God “Please speak to me,”  He did just that.  My mind immediately went to one of my favorite passages of Scripture, Psalm 139.

1 O LORD, you have searched me and known me!
2 You know when I sit down and when I rise up;
you discern my thoughts from afar.
3 You search out my path and my lying down
and are acquainted with all my ways.
4 Even before a word is on my tongue,
behold, O LORD, you know it altogether.
5 You hem me in, behind and before,
and lay your hand upon me.
6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;
it is high; I cannot attain it.

7 Where shall I go from your Spirit?
Or where shall I flee from your presence?
8 If I ascend to heaven, you are there!
If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there!
9 If I take the wings of the morning
and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea,
10 even there your hand shall lead me,
and your right hand shall hold me.
11 If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me,
and the light about me be night,”
12 even the darkness is not dark to you;
the night is bright as the day,
for darkness is as light with you.

13 For you formed my inward parts;
you knitted me together in my mother’s womb.
14 I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
Wonderful are your works;
my soul knows it very well.
15 My frame was not hidden from you,
when I was being made in secret,
intricately woven in the depths of the earth.
16 Your eyes saw my unformed substance;
in your book were written, every one of them,
the days that were formed for me,
when as yet there was none of them.

17 How precious to me are your thoughts, O God!
How vast is the sum of them!
18 If I would count them, they are more than the sand.
I awake, and I am still with you.

19 Oh that you would slay the wicked, O God!
O men of blood, depart from me!
20 They speak against you with malicious intent;
your enemies take your name in vain!
21 Do I not hate those who hate you, O LORD?
And do I not loathe those who rise up against you?
22 I hate them with complete hatred;
I count them my enemies.

23 Search me, O God, and know my heart!
Try me and know my thoughts!
24 And see if there be any grievous way in me,
and lead me in the way everlasting!

God was and is intimately involved in creating His dwelling place, whether that was the Tabernacle, Temple, or us.  He cares about the details.  He cares about us.  He has made each one of us in His image, in His likeness.  We are image bearers of Christ.  We were not thrown together.  We were fearfully and wonderfully made.  God knows us inside and out.  He created us.  God made each of us with a specific purpose… ultimately to bring Him glory, and that is no small thing to overlook.


A window in Heaven

One of my favorite parables in Scripture comes from Matthew 13:44, the parable of the Hidden Treasure.

44 “The kingdom of heaven is like a treasure hidden in the field, which a man found and hid again; and from joy over it he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.

This man knows that the treasure hidden in the field is worth far more than everything he owns, so he joyfully sells all that he has to gain that which is worth far more.  It’s a beautiful story.  People who didn’t know what he was doing would think he was insane!  He sells everything to buy a…. field.  Yet they don’t know that the field contains a treasure, but the man does, which explains his joy.

The Holy Spirit has really been stirring me up over the question, “What am I withholding from God?”  What things in my life do I resist letting go of, when in fact, I know that by letting go… I gain.  It all stems from a fundamental lack of belief in the Gospel.  If I truly believed the Scriptures and what they say about God then I’d be quick to let go of all the hindrances in this world.  If I truly believed, then I would live with an urgency that Jesus is coming back soon, just as He said He would.  If I truly believed, then I would make sure I gave my others every chance I got to hear about how great Jesus is.  It’s not a matter of hitting it harder, but rather a matter of asking God to increase my faith to believe Him to be who He says He is.

8 Will man rob God? Yet you are robbing me. But you say, ‘How have we robbed you?’ In your tithes and contributions. 9 You are cursed with a curse, for you are robbing me, the whole nation of you. 10 Bring the full tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. And thereby put me to the test, says the Lord of hosts, if I will not open the windows of heaven for you and pour down for you a blessing until there is no more need. – Malachi 3:8-10

It’s just stupid to rob God.  We are under the impression that we can help ourselves more than God can.  I cannot out-give God.  I cannot out-bless God.  He wins, every time, all the time.  So let’s not fight it.  He is a good God, ready to bless His children.

God, I pray that You would open the windows of heaven and pour down a blessing upon Your people until there is no more need.   Help us to be a generous people, joyful and eager to bless You as quick as You bless us.

Drink and be filled

Psalm 143

1Hear my prayer, O LORD;
give ear to my pleas for mercy!
In your faithfulness answer me, in your righteousness!
2 Enter not into judgment with your servant,
for no one living is righteous before you.

3 For the enemy has pursued my soul;
he has crushed my life to the ground;
he has made me sit in darkness like those long dead.
4 Therefore my spirit faints within me;
my heart within me is appalled.

5 I remember the days of old;
I meditate on all that you have done;
I ponder the work of your hands.
6 I stretch out my hands to you;
my soul thirsts for you like a parched land.

7 Answer me quickly, O LORD!
My spirit fails!
Hide not your face from me,
lest I be like those who go down to the pit.
8 Let me hear in the morning of your steadfast love,
for in you I trust.
Make me know the way I should go,
for to you I lift up my soul.

9 Deliver me from my enemies, O LORD!
I have fled to you for refuge!
10 Teach me to do your will,
for you are my God!
Let your good Spirit lead me
on level ground!

11 For your name’s sake, O LORD, preserve my life!
In your righteousness bring my soul out of trouble!
12And in your steadfast love you will cut off my enemies,
and you will destroy all the adversaries of my soul,
for I am your servant.

I had an amazing time last night and today at lunch with some of the leaders in our church.  Man, God is good and He is good to us.  That’s the thanksgiving I continue to have as I get time with these people.  We are a blessed church!

A common theme that I’ve seen in the conversations that have been had over the last 24 hours is a hunger for the Spirit of God.  In most reformed circles, you find a hunger for the Word of God which I believe is necessary for the life of a believer.  But, many times you find a weak spot when it comes to those very churches being known for the Spirit’s leading in their life to the same extent as their passion and devotion to the Word of God.  We are to worship God in both Spirit and in Truth.

23 Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. 24 God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.” – John 4:23&24

We, as disciples, should live lives lead by the Spirit of God.  I think about that a lot.  What does that mean?  Simply, it means to invite and follow the Spirit’s leading in all that you do.  For example, when you read the Word, allow the Spirit to speak to you.  Don’t simply look for the key verse to underline/highlight and shut your bible once you’ve gotten what you’ve wanted out of it, but rather go with the intentions of meeting with God and hearing from Him.   The Spirit will illuminate the Scriptures for you and feed you the way only the Spirit can do.

But upon further “chewing” of what it means to be Spirit lead, it dawned on me.  This won’t happen from trying to be Spirit lead.  Being Spirit lead will happen as a result of a hunger and thirst for the Spirit.  By recognizing how worthy, good, and satisfying God is.  When God brings us to a place of desperation for Him as though we are in a parched land thirsting for the water that only He can supply, we will begin to follow where that supply of water comes from.  Many times, we drink from the toilet instead of the purifying spring of life.  May we drink and be filled.

Teach me to do your will,
for you are my God!
Let your good Spirit lead me
on level ground!

Game Changer

I was reading this morning in the Gospel of John and came across the verse that really set me back.  I’ve read this verse several times, but it really hit me hard this morning.

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 16:7

This is mind-blowing to me.  This is on the heels of Jesus teaching that He was the true vine and we are the branches, that a disciple is not greater than his master, how the world will hate us if we follow after Him.  Jesus is telling His disciples once again, that in a short while, He will be gone, but that they shouldn’t worry or be sad because He’s sending us His Spirit…. and that’s to our advantage!

Now if you’re like me, you might be asking yourself, “what could be more advantageous than having Jesus with us?!”  Well, having His Spirit apparently is.  Many times, we treat the Holy Spirit like He’s the red headed step child of the Trinity.  The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of God.  I fail to comprehend that on so many levels.   Jesus was only able to walk with a limited number of people while He was here with us, but His Spirit is with each and every child of God.  He walks with us, changes, and empowers us on a daily basis.  He reaffirms and strengthens our faith by testifying of Jesus to us (John 15:26).   We can triumph over the sin in our life because we have the power of the Spirit.  The Holy Spirit is the game changer.  We will be able to do greater works than Jesus did (John 14:2), because every son and daughter of God has the power of the Holy Spirit living through them.  That’s incredible!

Stop quenching the Spirit and putting yourself back in the chains of sin and death and let the Spirit lead you in the everlasting way!