Dancing with the Holy Spirit

Yesterday (in 11:00 church) I spoke about the Holy Spirit.  I mentioned that in 2009 I spent a week with Ginghamsburg pastor Mike Slaughter for a seminary class – he told us to go home and find 10 people who wanted to dance with the Holy Spirit.  A few weeks after I returned from the week with Slaughter I preached a sermon in which I invited people to come to the front of the church to ‘dance with the Holy Spirit’.  About 20 people came forward and I think that was a turning point for many people in the church, and not just the ones who came forward.

But there were also people who came up to me afterwards and told me they wanted to come up, but they weren’t sure what all would be involved.  Therein lies the problem with giving way to God and ‘dancing with the Spirit’.  When you dance with the Spirit you do not lead, but instead you follow.  People who want to lead in the dance must find another dance partner.

Nobody who dances with the Holy Spirit knows what it’s going to involve.  Do you think the 20 people who came forward back in 2009 knew what it was going to lead to?  Jesus put it this way in John 3:8 – “The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit.”  When you say yes to Jesus, give yourself over to God, and let the Spirit have the lead– trust me, you don’t know where He will lead you.  We have a friend whom the Spirit led to be a long term missionary in Haiti.  The Spirit led Diane to go to college last year and she still doesn’t know why!!!  The Spirit led me to be a pastor.  The Spirit led our friend Ralph to get involved with youth prison ministries on a motorcycle and become chaplain of a Christian motorcycle group.  It led Francis Chan to leave the church he founded after 17 years as their pastor not knowing what he was going to do.  I could go on and on.

Every time our friend in Haiti worries about waning financial support for her ministry, she needs to remember it was the Holy Spirit who led her there and it will be fine.  (Here’s her awesome blog.)  Every time Diane frets over Algebra this semester, she needs to remember it was the Holy Spirit who led her back to school at the age of — well, at her age.  We have to remember it was the Spirit that led Jesus into the wilderness to be tempted by satan.  And most of us know that turned out OK.  It’s not that dancing with the Spirit is always easy.  Sometimes it’s unnerving and dangerous.  Sometimes it’s risky and scary.  But it’s never boring.  And it’s always for God’s glory, which makes it worthwhile.

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