Holy Spirit

A New Perspective

It’s interesting how something can just hit you, when you’re least expecting it, bringing a whole new perspective.  That’s what happened to me today, when God spoke to me unexpectedly through my Sabbath School Lesson.

Studying about the Holy Spirit has been extremely interesting to me so far, revealing new things about this element of the Godhead to me and how it impacts our lives.  However, today’s particular lesson spoke to me on another level, as it dwelt on the effect that the Holy Spirit has on our thoughts and actions, giving “evidence of God’s work in us”.

Reading through and taking in what the writer expressed about the Holy Spirit influencing some of the thoughts that we have and the acts of kindness we carry out, brought me back to my purpose and the mission God has set out for me.  It helped me to understand the overwhelming tugging on my heart, urging me to go out and make a difference in the world.   It allowed me to think about where my sense of good comes from.  In a way, it showed me why I view aspects of the world differently to others.

I’ve been asking God to speak to me and show me if I’m following the path He’s set out for me – I want to be sure that I’m doing the right thing and moving in step with Him, as I’ve made too many mistakes simply by being out of step with Him.  Getting an answer had been a struggle, but as soon as I studied today’s lesson, the answer was laid out clear to me.  A big smile lit up my face as I became exceedingly glad, thankful that God speaks to me in a variety of ways and that He will always give me an answer, even if it takes a little longer than I would like.

There are times when I wrestle with my purpose or find myself doubting the ability to embrace my calling, but I know that it is what God has set out for me and I trust Him.  He would never give me more than I can handle and with Him by my side I am more than a conqueror.  Now it’s up to me to keep on believing that.

Total Praise

There is a song that begins with the words: “Lord, I will lift mine eyes to the hills / Knowing my help is coming from You”.  This song is Total Praise, a well-known and frequently sung gospel song, which has a really powerful message that can relate to absolutely anyone in any lifetime.

“Your peace you give me in time of the storm” is then sung.  Whether this song is sung by a choir or a congregation during a worship service, it is always sung with heartfelt conviction.  The lyrics are a testimony for so many people and you can always feel the presence of God filling the room when it is sung.

Total Praise was sung during a concert I attended on Saturday and it was beautiful and dynamic.  You could see that the choir were giving their praises to God and you could feel the Holy Spirit moving in that hall.

Emotions were running high as people were touched and I was brought to tears as I also sang the words that mean so much to me: “You are the source of my strength / You are the strength of my life / I lift my hands in total praise to you”.

I am never more content than when I am praising my God, who really does deserve all my praise.  He is the source of my strength and the strength of my life, because I am nothing without Him.  My God has brought me to where I am today and I know that He is going to take me even further.  He holds me up when I am too weak to stand and He gives me courage when I am a fearful wreck.

My God is everything to me and after all He’s done, giving Him praise is the least I can do.  Singing the final words, “Amen, Amen, Amen, Amen”, allows me to give God that praise from the bottom of my heart with the simplest of terms as I lift my hands in total praise to Him…

Lovely Day

Yesterday I had a really lovely day; in fact, I had a really lovely Sabbath.  It was a good day full of various emotions, special moments and precious memories that will stay in my heart and my mind forever.

During divine service, I was truly blessed as the pastor preached another deep sermon that touched my heart.  Before beginning her sermon, she sang a powerful rendition of ‘He’s Been Faithful’, which was a beautiful and touching testimony.  She then opened up my mind again and helped me to see another story in the Bible in a way I’d never thought about.

As she preached about how Mary saw Jesus after He was resurrected and explained that Jesus was still on earth just because He knew that Mary could not be consoled until she had seen Him, it blew my mind.  Jesus was supposed to ascend to His father in Heaven immediately after His resurrection, but He stayed just because Mary needed Him.

Jesus was there for that one person who needed Him and He will be there for any of us, which is why it is essential for us to have a relationship with Him.  The pastor emphasised that Jesus loves every single one of us.  Jesus loves me and He wants to be my friend.  He wants to have a relationship with me.

By the end of the message, I was moved to tears and felt the Holy Spirit tugging on my heart, but something held me back.  I was happy to see many of my friends and my brother who usually doesn’t come to church go up for the altar call, stirring up more emotions for me, but I felt paralysed to move.  However, God wasn’t finished with me yet.

I was then excited to see an old friend who I’ve got a lot of love for and have really missed.  It was great to see him at church and I enjoyed having a nice catch-up with him.  I love friends that I can actually have good conversations with, it is something that always brings a smile to my face.

After spending time with my beautiful family and catching up with my cousins over lunch, I attended a baptism that will hold a special place in my heart forever.

It was emotional to watch three of my friends – three people who I love – get baptised, especially one of my closest friends who has a really special place in my heart.  I’ve watched him grow and mature into one of the most unique and amazing people I know, and I was so proud of him for taking this step in his life.  He has to know that I wouldn’t have missed it for the world.

But as I said, God wasn’t finished with me yet.  As the baptism drew to a close and the pastor made her final heartfelt appeal for the campaign, the Holy Spirit began tugging at my heart-strings again.  I didn’t want to get up because of the fear I was feeling and my heart was racing, but there was a voice telling me to go.

I’ve been making plans to get baptised ever since I went to camp meeting, but I’ve just been trying to figure out when I want it to happen.  Baptism is extremely important to me and it is one of the biggest events that will take place in my life, so I don’t want to rush into it.  I want to make sure that I get it right.

But God was telling me something, so my cousin held my hand and went up with me, as I made the decision to get baptised at the next baptism.  However, what made it more special was that my sister went up as well, which I was not expecting.  I’m glad she’s decided to take that step as well.

I know this is the right decision and I won’t look back, I’m only looking forward.  God knew it was meant to be already, as He gave a sign to the pastor of our church who saw the faces of me and my sister in his mind that morning.  As per usual, God knows what is right for me before I do and I appreciate that.

Yesterday really was a lovely day, but it was not only a lovely day; it was a special Sabbath.  It was a special Sabbath that I will treasure and will be in my thoughts forever…