Follow or Unfollow

Recently I did an article where I shared the scriptures in Ephesians 4:29-30 that talks about not letting any foul language come out of your mouth, but only what is good for building others up according to their needs and not grieving the Holy Spirit. I shared this, not because I want to be like a spiritual police woman trying to control what everyone says, but because the Holy Spirit is very precious to me and when I hear people using really foul language or I see it posted on Facebook or somewhere else I feel kind of shocked and grieved inside. That’s because the Holy Spirit, who lives inside me is grieved.  I realize that not everyone has this same level of sensitivity to the Holy Spirit and I am not saying that makes me any better than anyone else, but I don’t wish to lose that sensitivity and conviction and I would love for everyone to have that same kind of relationship with God. The Bible says to “Guard your heart above all things, because out of it flow the issues of life.” (Proverbs 4:23). The word of God also tells us that if we go against our conscience long enough and continue to do things that we know are wrong, our hearts can become hard and calloused and we can lose the conviction we once had (see Romans Ch. 1 and Ephesians 4:17-19).

Let me just say again, God knows each of our hearts, He knows if we are trying to do what is right or not and I’m not trying to make anyone feel condemned.  The Bible also says that a righteous man may fall seven times, but every time He will rise again, so don’t beat yourself up if you’re still struggling, trying to overcome something and you just haven’t won the battle yet.  If you’re trying to overcome, you’re pleasing the Lord.  It shows you have a repentant attitude towards sin.

In the Old Testament, the temple had an outer court, an inner court and a holy of holies. Today, the Bible says that our bodies are the temple of the Holy Spirit. I believe the outer court represents our flesh and blood bodies, the inner court our souls (mind, will and emotions) and the holy of holies our spirit (conscience and intuition, where the Holy Spirit resides, once we are born again). Although the temple veil that separated the inner court from the holy of holies was ripped into when Christ died on the cross, showing that the way was open for all who would receive Him to be able to go into the holy of holies and enjoy intimate fellowship with the Lord, I think many choose to have an outer court experience or relationship with God, because they would rather live carnal lives, following their own desires rather than being obedient to God or because they don’t know any better. They don’t know what’s available to them.

I am sure that some of you have had to unfollow someone on Facebook or turn the TV or radio station to another channel because the language or content got too rough.  I don’t want the Holy Spirit to ever unfollow me because I make Him feel grieved (by continuing to choose willful disobedience, not because I slipped up and then afterwards repented). I started thinking of what the scriptures say about following. The Apostle Paul said “Follow me (my example) as I follow Christ. In Mark 16:17-18, Jesus said “These signs will follow them that believe:  In my name, they will cast out demons, they will speak with new tongues (or other languages)…they will lay hands on the sick and they will get well.” Verse 20 says:  “And then they went out and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them and confirming the word through the accompanying signs.” (The New King James Version). I did a word study on what signs means and found that it referred to God’s signature of authenticity and it talked about how the Holy Spirit was like a constant companion that accompanied the disciples and was present to heal, perform miracles, etc., so that people would know the message they were preaching was from God.

A few months ago on a Sunday morning, my sister-in-law was having problems with her car, so my husband missed church and went over to see what was wrong with it.  As I was driving in to church by myself, I began praying and I sensed the Holy Spirit really flowing through me very strongly all the way to church.  When we came to the portion of the service where the Pastor calls for the Elders and intercessors to come forward and pray for those who have needs, I went up to pray. A lady and her daughter came up to request prayer for the Dad who was at home and had been sick for a couple of weeks and didn’t seem to be getting any better. As soon as I touched the Mom, I saw in my mind a mental picture of the sky over us with clouds, but there was a good-sized hole in the cloud that was directly over us. I knew the Lord was showing me that I had prayed through and as a result there was an opening for the Holy Spirit to flow freely (I believe the clouds represented the spiritual atmosphere or opposition of the enemy). I prayed for the Dad (who came to church the next week feeling better), next another lady came up for prayer for migraine headaches which she had been having frequently (like on a weekly basis) for many years and was having one at the time. I put my hands on her head and prayed for healing. Afterwards I said, I really sensed the Holy Spirit when I was praying for you and she said yes, it felt like electricity flowing into my head and she said she felt much better. I didn’t get a chance to talk to her again until about 2 or 3 weeks later, when I did I asked her if she had been having any more headaches since we prayed and she said no. Now I know that it was God who did that and not me, I give Him all the glory and praise.  I was merely the vessel or conduit that He used. My point in sharing this is that if I had not been following the leading of the Holy Spirit and allowing Him to flow through me that day, I don’t think that would have happened. If we want to be channels for the Holy Spirit to flow through, we need to be sensitive to His leading and direction and if we want to be able to sense those gentle nudges we feel inside that keep us on His path for us and help keep us under His protection and in line to receive His blessings, then we need to honor Him by trying to obey Him and making Him feel welcome and at home in our hearts. Be blessed everyone. Kelly Rowe