I pray you may know….”his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms.” Ephesians 1:19-20
When I asked Jesus to “come into my heart” at age fifteen, I opened up to the Holy Spirit who came in His powerful presence; He entered my life and began to transform me.
But somewhere along the line, I succumbed to my own perfectionistic tendencies and the influence of other Christians, and began trying to be good.
After many years of living from this paradigm, I was intensely “weary and heavy laden” from my own efforts. (see Matthew 11:28-30) I was dried up, tired, powerless, and guilty for not doing or being enough.
To top it off, I was attending a church with others who lived the same way, but weren’t ready to admit it and, therefore, could offer no answers for my spiritual malaise.
Long story short, my family’s journey led us to a different place of worship where believers had rediscovered the power of the Holy Spirit.
We humans, especially middle-class Americans, tend toward an independent spirit; but that spirit lies to us subtly, whispering: “You can do it all on your own. If you are having trouble, just try harder!”
But I cannot just “gut it out”. Neither can you.
The fruit of the Holy Spirit in Galatians chapter 5, that many of us memorized as children in church, comes as a by-product of the dynamic working of a powerful God – not the outcome of our self-effort. “Power” shows up all over the Scripture; my favorite Bible translation (NIV) contains 135 references of the word in the New Testament.
I am definitely not making the claim that finding a new church is a magic answer for all who are spiritually heavy-laden.
The only two requirements to receive power are humility and willingness.
You are the only source of power, Lord.”
“I open my heart to the power of the Holy Spirit today to change me and bless others.”
Let ‘s pray this and see what happens:
“I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. “ Ephesians 3:16