HAVING THE HOLY SPIRIT IS AN ADVANTAGE

It is surprising that many Christians I know are unreceptive to the idea that they can have an advantage in whatever they do. They find having the Holy Spirit as an advantage, is more wishful thinking instead of actual fact. Their skepticism sounds like: “Yeah, yeah, I’m saved and go to church, but how can this Godly advantage you talk about help me deal with others and in facing life’s problems”? The Christian advantage is similar to salvation—it is not earned; it is a gift. And though the Christian advantage is a gift, its application requires some effort.

Let’s define advantage as having beneficial circumstances, being in a favorable position, or prosperity. It gives you the confidence and ability to deal wisely with everything thrown at you and to come out on top, knowing God has a purpose in it all. It enables you to turn hopeless-looking situations into favorable ones.

The word “advantage” must not be confused with the word “guarantee”. People who enjoy an advantage are more likely to succeed than fail, but they have no guarantees. For example, if a person possesses the characteristics of a marathon runner (large strong heart, muscle cells with large and abundant mitochondria; and long slender legs) they have an advantage over those who do not share these characteristics. They have beneficial circumstances, but simply having this physical advantage (ability) is no guarantee they will win any or all marathons.

Once we recognize: Our advantage is the gift of the Holy Spirit, secured by an all-out commitment to serve Christ and trusting Him to guide every aspect of our life. Unfortunately, for various reasons, we must convince Christians to believe in and learn how to obtain the advantage Scripture tells us we can have and also how we get it.

Acts 2:36–38 “So let everyone in Israel know for certain that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, to be both Lord and Messiah!” Peter’s words pierced their hearts, and they said to him and to the other apostles, “Brothers, what should we do?” Peter replied, “Each of you must repent of your sins and turn to God, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. Then you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”

Once an individual has done the above, the Holy Spirit becomes our partner, making available to us that advantage every minute of every day. So we must ask this question: Does the Holy Spirit want each of us, having the Holy Spirit, to become successful? Is He with us to meet our needs? We then must realize that we must ask Him for help and guidance.

How often have you heard a Christian say: “I don’t feel worthy or good enough?” This is normal because we will never be good enough on our own and we don’t feel worthy because we aren’t. Scripture tells us that when we receive the Holy Spirit, He makes us worthy—something that is impossible for most normal Christians to do without Him. So what is the problem that you still don’t believe you have an advantage? More often than not, it is an issue of faith and trusting God. But until we begin trusting God and His Word, we can miss the advantage that is available to us.

We have established that the Holy Spirit comes into our lives when we receive Jesus. He helps us make wise, moral and ethical decisions. He guides, supports and directs as we learn to live as Christ lived. Do we consult Him as we would a flesh and blood partner? Or do we relegate Him to silent partner status? If I had a business partner who never consulted with me and did whatever he wanted, whenever he chose, I would think he didn’t want nor need my input and as soon as possible I would get out of the partnership. These Christians do not tend to miss His valuable assistance. Thankfully, the Holy Spirit doesn’t give up on people who continually ignore Him.

When the Holy Spirit takes up residence within us, He gives us faith to believe God’s promises and to depend on Him for everything we need. When we use faith, like muscles that are exercised, it grows, allowing us to believe and trust God ever more fully.

The Holy Spirit brings to us a supernatural life. He brings truth to light to guard against deception and provides heavenly wisdom to discern right from wrong. He empowers and counsels us so we may not become discouraged. He gives us grace that we might live a happy, abundant life and holiness so that we may overcome our self-centered natures. He gives us love so that we can be content.

Not everyone claiming to be a Christian has the advantage. Many believers desire to live as the world does and reject the work of the Holy Spirit in every facet of their lives. As a result, they deny the advantage they could have. Living a Holy Spirit—led life does not mean we can’t enjoy nice things, have nice homes, drive good cars and treat our families to luxuries. It does mean allowing the Holy Spirit free reign to check our decisions and we are to pray continually for guidance. Our self-centered natures and pride will always fight for control of our lives; therefore, we must decide: How much control are we willing to give the Holy Spirit? This will depend on how much advantage you will obtain and how much success in life you will have.

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