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HOW CAN I BE FILLED WITH THE SPIRIT?

Preferably, find someone to pray with you.  Someone spiritually mature in Christ. Nonetheless, you may pray by yourself.  

Earnestly desire Him; Holy Spirit is not a thing or an it.  Holy Spirit is the third part in the Trinity of God, a most important aspect of Him who created us.  Throughout the Old Testament God's Holy Spirit fell on those who where called to do His will concerning an important task.  Christ promised that all who asked in His name will receive the Helper,  Holy Spirit, and His Gifts.  

How can you receive?  First, you must believe in Christ.  Second, repent, turning from any area in your life that you know is wrong, asking for forgiveness, naming anything that might hinder all the Gifts from manifesting in you.  Third, simply ask God to pour His Holy Spirit upon your whole existence.  Forth, pray earnestly, seeking continually the Gifts of the Spirit, that you will be used at will by Him, growing you up to maturity, that others may see the Fruits of the Spirit that dwells in you.  

Remember, being filled with the Spirit is not a one time event like being Baptized.  Seek a continual infilling of His Spirit. Picture yourself as a pipe, or vessel feeding the people you come in contact with the Fruits that come from the Gifts that made you useable by God to do ministry in and through Christ, that others such as yourself may also be saved into eternal life.

Want to know more?  Read on

 

HOW CAN I BE FILLED WITH THE SPIRIT?

Robbie L. Rogers

How many are apprehensive... let’s be real honest.... some are really apprehensive about seeing or much less receiving the fullness of Holy Spirit’s presence? Or for that matter God’s full presence in any room where you are?

Whether we’re able to publicly admit it or not, it makes us a little uneasy... and, if you’ve not been filled, or have not seen many Gifts being displayed it can be a little scary too. and if we’re really honest... sometimes it scares the pants off us.

I mean we have grown comfortable in our Christian walk... we’re not supposed to be excited anymore... we’re educated professionals who hide their emotions... We’re sedate conservatives in the utmost sense.

Oh sure sometimes things go on in our church that manifest Holy Spirit’s presence... God’s Holy Power... and some of us even raise our hands... but truth be known... we’re all even a little afraid to simply raise our hands... why is that?

We’re afraid God might call on us and say, "HEY YOU OVER IN THE CORNER... YEAH YOU WITH YOUR HAND RAISED... THAT’S RIGHT... YOU!  I’M GOING TO SEND YOU TO BORNEO... YOU EVER BEEN TO THE WILDS OF BORNEO? NO, IT’S NOT IN MISSISSIPPI... IT’S OFF THE COAST OF AFRICA, I THINK... NO, I KNOW WHERE I PUT IT... IT’S NEXT TO AUSTRALIA.

It could happen.

"Really," you say?

No... probably not...

But that sort of describes some of our fears doesn’t it?

Most churches are generally so bound up in the world that if Christ came back today we would call an emergency General Convention. We would form a committee to study it, wanting to report back next year about the findings.

Okay... enough of that. Think about this... Suppose you were a big boiler... forget these itty bitty heat pumps like we use around here and such. Or even one the size you might have grown up with... I mean a really big one.

I worked at a Saltwater Desalination Research Facility that used to be next door to Edgewater Condominiums on the Gulf. We had this gigantic monster of a boiler. When it went on the whole building sort of shook.

For a guy who lived mostly in the warmer regions of the South... it was a scary thing... and I had to light it sometimes... working on it occasionally when it wouldn’t. You should’ve seen the burners on that thing. Like a jet engine.

Anyway suppose you were that boiler.  Sometimes boilers just sit, looking big and strange... if you’ve never seen or heard one or watched it do what it does best... you would want to figure out what it was and how it worked.

That sucker I worked on was over 12 feet tall, with a smoke stack that went about 50 feet up. Anybody would be curious about what it was that it did... and a little fearful at the same time.

It depended on several things to produce its super-heated steam or its super powerful power. What would that be?

The thing it needed, besides water. The pilot light mostly. 

Such a big thing to need such a small thing.

What if it was not lit? The pilot light.

That’s the way we are isn’t it... a powerful force that God ordained and yet we sit dormant.

We are supposed to apply scriptures to our life; and to look for signs to know God’s guidance. 

Sometimes He gets our attention with a burning bush, but mostly we get our roots worked around and the load of manure plopped on us.

What is the Pilot light... in this boiler we’re talking about?

The Holy Spirit!!!  Not only the pilot light... also the burners that stoke the power that creates the steam... not just the burners and the pilot light but the timer, thermostat, and the electricity that enable it to activate the whole process they are ALL the Gifts.

When you were Baptized in Christ you were given what?

The Holy Spirit. It was part of the prayers and promises God made to you. The whole package, and in some case that may have been enough to get the entire boiler operation proceeding.

Yet most of us have left it the way we found it, keeping it polished and neat looking. Afraid of what it might do if it were to start up on it’s own.  We are simply a boiler without power... waiting to happen.

Some of us have the pilot light lit.  Some have the thermostat set, or even the timer.  Some have the power running to the timer and thermostat turning the burner on... waiting for the first burst of powerful steam to come forth.  Some even have seen some of the power used in their life at different instances.

Who in their right mind wouldn’t be a little fearful of unleashing the entire thing... not without studying the manual and carefully setting the switches and watching the gauges properly.

We all want power in our life... that is if we know how to handle it... 

"Whew... now you’re scaring me... Boilers blow up sometimes," you say.

Now... don’t be scared... who is in control of the controls... the Boiler Master... Jesus!!!  And, He knows what He’s doing!!! 

Okay... hold that picture. The Book of Acts... remember the Bible is made up of a bunch of books... they sometimes call Acts "Volume I in the history of the church."

Jesus let us know when He instructed the disciples to wait for the Helper, He was sending... Holy Spirit... that all could and should be filled. And we know Jesus is the same today as He was yesterday, and the same applies to Holy Spirit and God... doesn’t it?  All who have been Baptized in the name of Christ have what?

Okay... yes eternal life.... and salvation, and much more... right... but, remember you’re a boiler in the making... what did you get when you were Baptized with Christ... Holy Spirit... your pilot light! Plus you got all the extras that came with it... the full works... what you need next is letting God turn it on... right.

But most of us sit there with all the potential locked up... either not knowing or fearful to set the process in motion.

Hey! Remember who is in control... the Boiler Master... not only is He the Boiler Master He is the Son of the Boiler Maker and knows all there is to know about how it all works... Trust Him!  Christians receive Holy Spirit when they’re converted, right?

"Yeah... but," you say.

There are no buts to it. When Peter and John prayed for the Samaritans, Holy Spirit came. but Simon-the-Magician was left out. He was so impressed he tried to buy this power (Acts 8:14-18). But, you can’t... it’s only given, isn’t it?

Paul, who was called Saul at the time, watched, holding the garments while others stoned Stephen, the first Christian martyr (Acts 8:1). Afterward he began hunting down Christians in an attempt to destroy the church. Yet, later on he received an encounter and conversion with Jesus. He began teaching in the synagogues that "Jesus is the Son of God" (Acts 9).

How could he do that? Saul became Paul through Holy Spirit’s power, which came at the same time He received Jesus into his life.

At Ephesus, Paul placed his hands on people who never heard of Holy Spirit and they began prophesying and speaking in tongues (Acts 19:1-7).  With some that’s the way it is, the gifts fall on who they may... it’s God’s way of doing business isn’t it?

Peter went on a remarkable journey to the home of Cornelius. He was simply expecting to give a little talk to the Gentiles there... a real feat for Peter for Jews and Gentiles don’t mix and especially not into their homes. He would have to wash for a week!

Anyway, he barely got started... what happened?  Those Gentile dogs actually received Holy Spirit and they weren’t even circumcised (Acts 10:44-46). This was not what he expected... hey, they were conservatives too... and those people not only got their pilot lights turned on but their burners were going full blast too.

Zounds... what’s a good Jew to do??? He was so flabbergasted he couldn’t go on... he was speechless... literally; but, he was too busy being amazed.

How can these things happen?

Luke says in Acts 2, the day Holy Spirit officially opened up shop at Pentecost was like a heavy tropical storm had arrived.

We who live on the Gulf coast know what that’s like don’t we?  The power of Holy Spirit flooded the Apostles... or as one little kindergarten kid called them the "opossums."

When they were filled they heard a gale (Acts 2:2). No not a real one, but it resembled one... God’s invisible power, His Breath... RUAH!  A word meaning both wind and spirit.

Sometimes people who are filled shake... like from the effects of the wind.  For others it is difficult to breathe... like facing the force of a mighty wind.

They also saw what resembled fire (Acts 2:3). Some saw it on their hands some on parts of their body. Some felt they were glowing all over. Some felt liquid heat... "burning in my arms when I was not hot."

Was their boiler stoked or what???

The gift of tongues (often our prayer language) bless most people immeasurably... yet, it is not the only gift we receive... or deny having.  It’s not even the most important.

You may as yet not display this gift in your life; but your pilot is lit.  Many Christians, though,  do not even allow to have their pilot light lit. Some operate at the power level THEY allow Jesus to set their thermostats at, barely allowing that.

Remember, Jesus will not do what He is not invited to doIf you do not desire a gift... you will not receive it; or if you desire it for wrong reasons, like Simon-the-Magician, you will not.

"What is this speaking in tongues anyway," you say?

Primarily it’s a way of praying.

"Well I can do that now," you say. "Why do I need that stuff. It’s too weird. I don’t want Holy Spirit if that weird stuff comes with it. I’ve been a Christian a long time and I’ve done right nicely without it, thank you."

You don’t have to if you don’t want too. That’s the beauty of it all.  Holy Spirit will work with YOU however you need Him to... but whether you like it or not He already resides in your heart, if you received Christ into your life.  

It’s a form of prayer life that builds you up.  It transcends the limitations of the human language into that which God fully understands. 1 Corn 14:2 "For anyone who speaks in a tongues does not speak to men but to God."

Have you ever been at a lost for words? 1 Corn 14:4 "For if I pray in tongue, my spirit prays, but mind is unfruitful."

"Who needs it!" You say. "I want to be in control. I don’t need something I can’t see or understand.  I mean... it’s like being possessed, ‘er something."

There are three areas that being filled with the spirit will help you directly.  First in your praise and worship. A child runs out of words until they learn more. They get frustrated and cry because they can’t communicate. As an adult we have the same emotional problem. We long to express our love to God in our worship and praise.

When we’re filled with the spirit and allow the spiritual gifts to operate in our life, the boiler becomes stoked and the message springs forth, telling Jesus the loving Master where we stand... how we feel.

Second, when you need to pray under pressure praying in the spirit will help. There are times when it’s hard to know what to do next let alone what or how to pray. When such times happen the pressure, anxiety or grief can be unbearable.

Have you ever been in a situation that was so intense... so difficult you couldn’t pray... there were no emotions left... no words in you.   I have many times and without being able to pray in the spirit I doubt I would have made it.  At least not in the same way.

You do not have to utter a sound while praying in the spirit, if you do not want to. It’s a choice you yourself make. Holy Spirit will not take over your will, nor your mind, nor anything else if you don’t want Him to.

Holy Spirit enable us to express what we really feel to God. It is not mindless... the mind is unfruitful when you pray in the spirit because it’s not going through the processes, or filters you imbedded in your mind out of your worldly experiences.

The gift of tongues will enable you to pray all the way to the hospital, for yourself and others, bringing the situation to God’s throne, filling you with a hope and assurance that you could not know otherwise... giving you a peace that passes all understanding.

If you have not had this happen and felt such a peace during major troubles in your life you don’t know what it feels like... but I have and I do... I would not dream denying any Gift God wants to see operating in my life.

To me praying in the spirit is by far the most personal of all.

"I tried to pray in the spirit but nothing happens... nothing but my words anyway, or silence.  I guess He just doesn’t think I should have it," you say.

Hey!!!  No way.

If you ask God for a fish (Luke 11:11,12), what will He give youA SCARY SNAKE

NO!! What will He give you???

A NICE FRESH FISH (what you actually asked for)!!!  Yet, He will not force His gifts on you. You have to cooperate.  You must desire them... did you know that you can never win a race or accomplish anything with just the desire of it... you must have the will to work for it... the  determination to train diligently. To become disciplined... a disciple.

Bishop Turumanya, from Uganda said, "You in this country say you want revival. You have the desire for it but not the will."  I fear he is right... pray we all change our desire to will.

In Luke 11 Jesus invites us to open the door, six times He askes.  (1) He says, "ASK and it will be given to you." (2) Then He says, "SEEK and you will find." (3) Then He says, "KNOCK and the door will open to you." (4) Then He tell us, "For everyone who ASKs receives." (5) We are not convinced so He tell us again, "He who SEEKs finds."  (6) Then finally He tell us, "To him who KNOCKs, the door will be opened.."

If we ask for His gifts that’s exactly what we shall receive.

Jesus doesn’t say, "How much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who are advanced Christians."  He says, "TO THOSE WHO ASK." (Luke 11:13)

If you want to be filled with the Spirit you should ask for it NOW.  If you have already been filled but lack some of the gifts ask.

To receive the gift of tongues you must cooperate by opening your mouth and starting to speak... as you would if you were a child again make a sound... it will not make any sense to you and may even embarrass you.  Not that praying and praising God in the spirit is not sometimes done in English or your normal language, it is often.

Praying in tongues will be instantly manifested in some... others require considerable effort... why? Who knows for sure.  If you find it does not come easy to you, please don’t give up. If you must, get alone, go outside, in a room, and utter a sound.  If you make a sound practice it... your new spiritual language. And if you feel you can’t make a sound, silently pray in your new spiritual language.  Most likely though unless you make a sound, you will find your spiritual prayers less effective.

When you begin you will find yourself praying in silence more often than out loud... just like with your natural voice, as you were when a child learning to speak. The biggest advantage to a prayer language is that you can easily pray in tongues without ceasing.

Is it something you desire... it will change your life for the better, I can promise you. Yet again I say, being Filled in the Spirit may not be just a one-time event like being Baptized in Christ. That is scripturally correct only one time... even if you fall away... you simply ask for forgiveness and He forgives you. And remember the amount of water you were Baptized with is only symbolic, it represents Christ... the Living Water... the power is in His Name. He is the important part. receiving Him into your life is the most important aspect of your life.

Peter was filled in the spirit three times (Acts 2:4; 4:8,31).  You can use the analogy of a partially filled balloon. it’s a process... being filled. Like being a Christian... sometimes it takes time

Okay visualize a clear glass pitcher of potatoes.  It represents a person.  Not like some of us... this person is very transparent The potatoes represent sinful areas in his life.  You notice I called it a him.  Did you know if you bring the father in a family to Christ that you get a 75% chance of getting the whole family.  But if you bring the mother to Christ, you only have a 35% chance. Why is that... we don’t know for sure... I suspect though it’s because he causes most of problems in the family, and the rest of the family is so grateful.

We’ve talked about how being a Christian is a process, one we can’t expect to fully accomplish over night. Yet, because this person is so transparent you know this person is saved, it’s apparent in their life... isn’t it.

What happens when we receive Christ?  Holy Spirit comes doesn’t He? 

What else can we see here? This person is operating in some of the gifts because we can see the Christ in them... right.

"Yeah," you say. "But what about all those ugly potatoes in their life... don’t they effect them."

Now you’re getting the picture. That’s the reason the boiler we talked about sits dormant, ready to do something powerful... but, we’re not willing to let much happen. We’re afraid.

Okay... this person just went through prayer counseling... lets take out some of these sinful potatoes and throw them into the abyss.

Do you see what is happening to the water. There’s a lot more room for water... Holy Spirit

We have an opportunity here, don’t we? This guy looks really well... so spiritually healthy.  My guess is he thinks he finally arrived... he’s a mature Christian.

What do you think???

What happens when we sweep out our spiritual house, leaving the door open?  Oh oh, this Christian didn’t really get rid of his sins... the ones here these potatoes.

He couldn’t quite do it... they seemed so innocent. "Everybody else does it... it doesn’t effect my walk with the Lord," we all say don’t we?

Turn to Matthew 12:43-45 "Now When the unclean spirit goes out of a man, it passes through waterless places, seeking rest, but it finds none. It then says, `I will return to my house from which I came;’ and when it comes, it finds it unoccupied, swept and put in order. Then it goes and takes along with it seven other spirits more wicked than itself, and they go in and live there; and the last state of the man shall be worse than the first."

We could keep this up all night... putting in potatoes... Taking out potatoes and so on; but we won’t. 

So where are you?  Are you a boiler in progress?  Or still full of potatoes?

What do you want for your life...  Spiritual gifts?  Ask and ye shall receive.  You can do that... or you can refuse and put it off...  It’s your choice.

I myself want to continue to be filled to the top.

 

Want to know more about Holy Spirit click here?

More: Who is Holy Spirit?

          What Are the Gifts of Holy Spirit?

          What is Tongues?   

 

If you desire to know more about this Jesus Christ who loves you, and you want to ask Him  into your heart, receiving His Saving Grace please click on this Salvation Prayer

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