35: 50 Days of 3:16

For the last couple of days, I have been off grid or at least separated from the electronic devices that tend to keep us connected. Working as a counsellor at a Camp for Children. I really enjoy taking these times to pour into the lives of the next generation and although it wears me out I know that these times are vital to the growth of these kids. The kids learned about being empowered with Jesus. He is their hero they are looking for. He gives them Super Purpose, a Super Mission and Super Power through the Holy Spirit. This power is available to anyone who has turned to the Lord.


But whenever someone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away

2 Corinthians 3:16


Back in the Old Testament, before Jesus had made the scene, God had provided the people with an earthy way for them to distinguish His presence. He had first given them a portable tabernacle and then they build the temple. The ark of the covenant was created not as an idol to be worshipped but as a seat where God’s presence rested. The power of God’s presence was revered and separated by a curtain and eventually a large veil. No one but the highest priest was able to go inside this veil and see the ark. This task was performed not very often and when it was the priest assigned went in with a rope around his ankle and bells so that if the presence of God overwhelmed him or he fell over dead that the other priests could pull him out. That is how serious they took the presence of God in their midst.


Jesus came along and turned everything upside down. He when talking promised to shake things up, he promised that every believer would have access to God’s presence, no veil required. He would take the place of the veil and ensure that those who needed to see God would and could experience His presence without fear of falling over dead. Not only that but He promised that each and every follower would have Gods presence inside them through the Holy Spirit, who will live within every believer. He even proved his power and authority in this by ripping the veil in two, when he died on the cross. This was no accident that the veil was torn, no Jesus didn’t sneak into the temple and cut the veil, he was hanging on the cross. The veil was no longer required Jesus displayed his power by removing the veil as a symbol that we could now enter into God’s presence.


Do you feel unworthy to be seen by God? That may be the sin that is shaming you. Sin separates us from God, Jesus on the cross provided a way for us to be free from the sin that causes this shame. This sin cleansing is offered freely to anyone alive that makes the step of faith and chooses Jesus. He may have died on the cross but displaying the awesome power of God, He rose again bringing life and forgiveness. Providing a way for us to remove the sin that separates us and removing the veil that divides us from Gods presence, and even goes one step further sending the Holy Spirit (which is part of God) to live in us. We are empowered by God, what is holding you back from receiving this power?


Father, many who will read this may not know you, I pray today that they will find the truth they need and finally make that giant leap into your arms asking Jesus to forgive them of their sins. They say the first step is admitting that we have a problem. Until they realize this they will fight the help Jesus offers. Give us wisdom and boldness to show the world that they need help, in my family, my friends, my community, and my world. Let me be the light you are asking me to be so that those around me can see what you have done for them and the power you want to give them. That following Jesus isn’t about losing everything but gaining everything.   Amen

30: 50 Days of 3:16

On day 28 we talked about Jesus receiving the baptism from John, how John did not feel worthy to provide this task, feeling it should be the other way around. Today we see how John felt about the coming Messiah and why he felt humbled in Jesus presence. John was a man like us, he had his doubts as well, even after making a strong statement like the one today or recognizing Jesus and baptising him we see that after he was imprisoned only months later, he sent his disciples to ask Jesus if he really was the Messiah. 


John answered them all, “I baptize you with[a] water. But one who is more powerful than I will come, the straps of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie. He will baptize you with[b] the Holy Spirit and fire.

Luke 3:16


The baptism in water is an important step in any believer’s life. But John here tells the reader of another important baptism that is available through the Messiah. This part of being a Christ follower is often ignored because people do not take the time to understand the role of the Holy Spirit. Some groups of believers have taken this to far and place a higher importance on it to the point where those who do not agree are ostracized.  The Holy Spirit is God. Just the same as Jesus is God, the Holy Spirit has been given to meet with us where we are. Many put the Holy Spirit on another level just a little lower than Jesus, all because Jesus promised to send another to help us. The Holy Spirit is not like a worker who has been sent but as an ally sent to assist. He was there with Jesus empowering Him in miracles, giving Him strength on earth.


If we were already baptised in water why would Jesus come and there be a promise to baptize with fire? Fire consumes us, fire is used to refine us. Just like gold when found is unpure, refinement with fire removes impurities and creates something beautiful. This process is not always a fast one as we resist the process, afraid that we will lose who we are and become something else. God created you the way you are for a reason, your personality and talents are what He wants to use. Refinement will not destroy who you are but enhance you for the better removing the bad traits and solidify the positive ones. Holding on to the past and things of this world keep us from refinement. Many have been attributed to the statement ‘Let go and let God’, it is what we need to do to allow God through the Holy Spirit to work in our lives.


Maybe today you feel like I have in the past, a stale Christian faith that doesn’t seem to be going anywhere. Church on Sundays, maybe a study during the week, casual prayer and devotions. But life is just blah, you want to feel excited about your faith but you just don’t. When was the last time you let the Holy Spirit work in your life? When have you asked Him to baptise you with fire revealing things that need to be removed?  This can be done alone or in church. Many a Sunday I see the altar empty and people rushing out of the church as soon as the pastor says his closing prayer. What if the church was to take time praying for the Holy Spirit to refine them? Give them purpose? Praying for more than being a seat warmer, holding a place for entrance to heaven? We are called for so much more, but until we are ready to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit and fire we wander through life. We can’t expect change to just happen, most times we have to make the first step, it may be that first step that carries you into a new chapter in your faith.


Father, I pray today that everyone who takes the time to read this knows you, if they don’t I ask that today you will show them the relationship you have for them and the forgiveness that Jesus has for them.  Use us to reach our families, neighbours, coworkers and our world. Holy Spirit refines us in your fire, not to burn us up but to remove impurities that hinder us from growing with God. Use our personalities and abilities to be effective in the mission of sharing the love of Jesus to this world. We need strength and wisdom to be effective, Holy Spirit we ask for these things. Use us. Amen

16: 50 Days of 3:16

We are about halfway through the Old Testament and we find this Proverb about loving the Lord. As I had stated in Day 12, King Solomon had requested wisdom over and earthly riches or power. He with this wisdom wrote many of the proverbs to share his insights that God had given him.


Long life is in her right hand;
in her left hand are riches and honour.

Proverbs 3:16


Whenever I read the Proverbs and it is speaking of wisdom I try to change the word to the Holy Spirit. Ultimately the Holy Spirit is the one who provides the wisdom we need and guides us in our walk with Christ. When you do this, we see a description of the Holy Spirit like never before. Like a friend who will never leave you, knows what to say at the right times and pushes you to succeed.  Trusting in the Holy Spirit makes us much wiser believers as she is God.

Verse 13 tells us that blessed is a man who finds the Holy Spirit(wisdom). The amazing thing we as believer know is that we don’t have to look for the Holy Spirit. Jesus promised that he would send the Holy Spirit to us when we accept his salvation. We have the Holy Spirit with us as soon as we turn our lives over to him. That means we have access to wisdom, many do not realize this and walk around lost in their faith. We must empower new believers and old that to experience faith and to share the love they have found with others they need to make a deeper connection with the Holy Spirit. She is part of the Holy Trinity and is God, praying and conversing with her is the same as talking to God. She will give you guidance when you need it, even when you think you don’t.

Listening and following her promptings will give you long life. It will not always be how you plan it, but it will be fresh and exciting. Living in tune with the Holy Spirit will change how we walk daily. It may take you off the beaten path to places you never expected to go, but life was supposed to be an adventure, challenges and new opportunities. How can one expect a reward if no risks are ever taken? A man reaps what he sows is not always about bad things happening for doing bad things. What about good being reaped for good things you do in God’s name?

Are you walking with wisdom? Have you taken the time to ask the Holy Spirit to walk with you, guide you and show you the next step in your life? I pray today that your eyes are open to the third part of God that is the closest part to us. She is the one living inside of us, giving us the wisdom to become who we were meant to be.


Father, thank you for sending the Holy Spirit to guide us and watch over us. We don’t always listen to her guidance, but we ask today that we would start. Open our ears to listen more clearly, let us walk with her in everything we do. Today we want to show your love to others, we want to fulfil the mission we are called to do. Amen



Day 35: 50 Days All In

As we earnestly work towards an all in relationship with God we must understand that this relationship incorporates all three sides of God. God the Son, who frees us from Sin. God the Father who loves us and watches over us. God the Spirit who works in us, without the Holy Spirit our relationship would be empty. He has been working in the world right from the start we see his debut in Genesis 1:2 where it tells us ‘ the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the water’. In the Old Testament, his role was miraculous, working in times and place with one individual or group. Jesus, it seems to have changed his direction to dwell in all of those who have accepted salvation.
“Purify me from my sins, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow. Oh, give me back my joy again; you have broken me— now let me rejoice. Don’t keep looking at my sins. Remove the stain of my guilt. Create in me a clean heart, O God. Renew a loyal spirit within me. Do not banish me from your presence, and don’t take your Holy Spirit from me.”
Psalms 51:7-11 NLT
It’s amazing how Jesus is revealed in so many ways in the Old Testament. In the middle of the Psalms is a cry for salvation and repentance, David cried out to God because he was troubled and needed Gods forgiveness. To me, it is an example of brokenness and realizing that we can’t do it alone.
Now the Holy Spirit wasn’t known by that name in the Psalms and probably should read holiness, but none the less it is the same thing. The Holy Spirit has always been there comforting those who call on God. He wants to comfort you. As a believer, the Holy Spirit lives in you
David cries for a loyal spirit. I wonder how many of us can honestly say when we last prayed for a loyal spirit to reside in our hearts. Jesus promised that even though he was leaving to prepare a place for us in heaven that he would send another, just like him, to comfort us and give us power. Today if you have accepted Jesus and want an all in relationship with God then you need to know that the Holy Spirit lives in you. He is not there to control you but to guide you, strengthen you, encourage you and give you wisdom. We need to embrace the power he has for us. We need to ask him for a loyal spirit, a relationship where we trust in the one Jesus sent to help us. He does not impose anything on us, but I think it is the time we as a church start listening to his voice.
Father, today we pray alongside David. Create in me a clean heart. Wash away all my sins. Holy Spirit work in my life, feel free to take over and change anything or guide me to make changes to improve who I am in Christ. God, renew a loyal spirit in me. I want to be continually faithful to you and your call to reach the lost and make disciples. I want my all in relationship to include not only the Father and Son but the Holy Spirit who strengthens me. Amen