Confident in Waiting
I feel pretty confident saying, as I look around at the beautiful landscape God created, that April Showers do indeed bring May flowers. Spring brings such renewal to the earth and sometimes that carries over into life itself. The wonder of spring seems to come deep within the earth and then burst forth working from the inside out. This week we celebrate Pentecost Sunday where God sent the Holy Spirit to live within each of us, on the inside.
No matter our confidence level the inside is where most things come to life and function as they should. A lesson that Annie learned in her Grandmother’s garden. She was visiting her grandmother one beautiful spring morning such as the ones we have experienced lately. The two strolled out into grandmother’s flower garden hand in hand. While grandmother stopped to inspect the progress of her flowers Annie rushed on into the garden and tried with her own two hands to open up a rosebud that was just beginning to bloom. But she was not successful! As she would pull the petals open, they would tear, bruise, wilt, or fall completely to the ground below. Finally, in frustration she cried out, ”Grammie, I just don’t understand it. When God opens a flower, it looks beautiful but when I try, it just falls apart.” ”Well, honey,” Grandmother answered, ”There’s a good reason for that. God is able to do it because He works from the inside out.” God sent the Holy Spirit to work from the inside out too. Jesus told the disciples they must wait for the Holy Spirit to come. Once the Spirit dwelled within them they would then function as they should and could move forward with their mission.
The disciples recognized two things; they had to wait, and they needed to do so with confidence. Isn’t that the way we must go forward in life too? We must look at the storms or problems in our life in the confident light of God’s power instead of looking at the darkness of the cloud. Sometimes the cloud’s darkness looms and presses in on us and we do not see any lighter rays in the distance. It is then we must remember with confidence that God hears all prayers and will certainly seek the best solution for His purpose for the good of those who love and believe in Him. (Romans 8:28) This is where our misery can turn to hope. But we must know that it is God that we must turn to first for help and then like the disciples we must wait with confidence. It is this trust and then the willingness to act upon that faith that God grants His help. The Holy Spirit is our helpmate through the storms and the Spirit starts inside the heart of each of us.
When the Holy Spirit is working inside of you it is often not realized but just accepted. Author, James Packer, gave a wonderful illustration regarding this through picturing flood lights. He was walking to the church one winter evening and saw the building’s floodlights as he turned the corner. When floodlightsÂ are well placedÂ the lights are so that you do not see them and in fact you are not supposed to see where the light is coming from, just the building on which the floodlights are properly trained. ThisÂ makes the building visible that would otherwise not be seen for the darkness. It maximizes its dignity by throwing all the details into relief so it is seen properly.
The Spirit is like the hidden floodlights shining on the Savior. When the light of the Spirit is cast from the inside He lights up the Savior on the outside so you can confidently know Him, go to Him, and receive the gifts of joy and peace. Whether life holds storms or sunny days the Holy Spirit is inside you casting the light to the Savior so you can wait confidently for the Lord to work everything for the good of His purpose.
As for me, I look to the Lord for help. I wait confidently for God to save me, and my God will certainly hear me. Micah 7:7 (NLT)
Confident in Knowing
It is important that we show great faith and wait knowing that it is God to whom we must turn to first instead of trying to run out head first into the storm. This type of confidence would look like this; prayer, waiting, and then last acting. Too often in a storm we tend to reverse those steps by running out and acting, then sitting and waiting for the storm to pass, and when it doesn’t turn to prayer. Instead we should recognize the power of the Holy Spirit and know that He is with us always on the inside casting the light to the Savior so we can see. We should know the first place to begin is with prayer.
Faith in something you can’t see can be scary in a world that insists that you must solve your own problems and be self-sufficient. But with the Holy Spirit you can find the confidence you need to allow your fear to disappear and be replaced by confident peace. When you allow the Holy Spirit to take control, you, like the disciples, will be able to find courage and strength. For it is with this leap of faith that you will find the confidence you need for inner peace.
There are many symbols that are in the Bible that represent the Holy Spirit. But the three classic symbols are the wind, fire, and the dove. The wind represents the breadth of life, the fire is the power of God, and the dove descending is the peace sent to the earth. When God sent the Holy Spirit to take His place in the believers it began with a might wind, followed by images of fire, that released their fear and replaced it with peace. (Acts 2: 1- 4)
You, as a believer, can draw upon the Holy Spirit in your life too in all kinds of weather.Â There was a submarine several years ago that was undergoing testing and had to remain submerged for many hours. When it returned to the harbor, the captain was quickly asked, ”How did the terrible storm last night affect you?” The officer looked in surprise and exclaimed, ”Storm? We didn’t even know there was one!” The sub was so far beneath the surface that it had reached the area known to sailors as ”the cushion of the sea.” So even though the ocean whipped up huge waves by the high winds the waters below never even stirred. This is the picture of the peace that comes with the Holy Spirit. The storm waves of fear, worry, and heartbreak will not touch those resting in the arms of Christ. You can choose to be sheltered by His grace and find confident encouragement by His Spirit.
You are challenged to go in faith to God first with life and its impending storms. You can then find the conviction to trust the Holy Spirit. Be like the little girl lost in the big city. She sits crying on the curb, a police officer finds her, and places her in his car. He drives up and down the street, hoping she’ll recognize something familiar. At last she does as she sees a steeple with a cross on it. Her tears vanish and her voice returns as she exclaims, ”That’s my church! I can find my way from here.” She is not the only one.
Be motivated in knowing that God cares about your life and your problems and He asks nothing more than your faith. Be very confident in the comfort of knowing that the great and powerful creator of the universe and beyond loves and cares about little, tiny, individual, you.
Love in Christ,
May not a single moment of my life be spent outside the light, love and joy of God’s presence and not a moment without the entire surrender of myself as a vessel for Him to fill full of His Spirit and His love. Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â
Credits Packer, J. (1986). Your Father Love You,. Wheaton: Harold Shaw Publishers.
What are your thoughts? Join Us in Discussion
Have you found the confidence in the power of the Holy Spirit? Do you recognize that the Spirit begins within you? Have you weathered the storms of life with the Spirit casting the light upon the Savior? Join us in discussion on being confident with the Holy Spirit.