The Gospels record Jesus saying several times to the disciples that “if you have seen me you have seen the Father.” To see the Son of God, the fleshly Jesus standing before them, to see how he acted, lived, served, and loved — was to see the Father and to know his loving, giving, healing, powerful character.
I’ve had people ask me before “How do you see Jesus at work right now?” Sometimes I’ve kind of fumbled my way through that question… err, I don’t know, I guess technically Jesus was a man so I haven’t seen HIM in the flesh outside of what I see of him in the Scriptures… It’s a minor difference, but this weekend as Dave taught through who the Holy Spirit is I found myself reflecting on the fact that it is more accurate to say that to see Jesus at work in the present, is to know the Spirit.
Much like Dave shared, I lived a lot of my life holding the Holy Spirit at an arm’s length. The churches I found myself in either didn’t talk about him or talked about it in a way that felt like I was either going to become a crazy person or believe in some voodoo magical entity. But a few years ago, I had an experience where I realized I’d totally missed the Spirit and that it’s actually pretty difficult to go about the Christian life without him.
So often what I think we need to hear, in this present day where we’ve all either heard a little too much crazy Holy Spirit talk or have heard nothing at all… is that there is nothing to fear in the Holy Spirit. He will not hurt you. He is the very essence and experience of love. He is the one that quiets us so that we may hear his voice. He is the one who orders our lives. He is the one who sets our broken, hurt, unsure, fearful places within us right. He is the one who proclaims us as beloved sons and daughters. He is the one who sets us free. He is the one who gives us dreams and like wind fans those dreams into actual flame. He is the one who readily offers more and more and more of himself, never running out of what he can give. He is the one who gives us breath and words in prayer. He is the one who allows us to cry, “Jesus is Lord!” He is the one that fills us with the very power that raised Jesus from the dead, and says “you will do even more works than these…” healing every disease, casting out demons, curing the sick, raising the dead… Sure, sometimes it might look a little crazy to the rest of the world but the Spirit is good and kind. If you’re like me and are holding him at an arm’s length may I just offer that you can put the fear down, because it truly has no place in this life with God. He wants only to love you! I promise, promise, promise.
Bloom, to know the Spirit… is to see Jesus alive in the world… which is to proclaim the Father’s heart to the world. My prayer for us all is that we would become a people humbled to receive God, and continually filled and alive to the Spirit. This Pentecost, may you open yourself to the Spirit afresh and may we journey together into the heart of the Father, becoming more and more like Jesus in the world. You are loved, Bloom.