(John 15:26.) 3. This is what he says in the Spiritual Canticle: This daring expression about the power that our love and trust can exercise over God's heart contains a beautiful and very deep truth. Let’s consider four key truths about the leadership of the Holy Spirit: 1. It was thought that in this life Christians could reach a level of personal holiness in which they could stop sinning. “Now Scot,” she said with grandmotherly warmth and her customary twinkle in the eye, “gossiping is a mistake, not a sin, and God looks over mistakes.” Enough said. Here’s another way to say it: anything that is not loving—of God and of others and of self and of all God’s creation—is unholy. Letter 2074 in the Annecy edition. Jesus doesn't promise that the Holy Spirit will control us. Subscribers receive full access to the archives. St. John of the Cross, Spiritual Canticle B, strophe 32, I. Father Jacques Philippe. It is the love of God and the love of one’s neighbor which points out … But the Bible Brings Hope. 13. It gives us the power to produce spiritual fruit that we could not produce on our own. Hebrews 12:14 God is perfect; he lacks nothing. Why? We must have the Holy Spirit indwelling us and filling us with His holiness. For these disciplines to do their proper work, we need to practice them as we are open to God’s Spirit. The Bible says, "No man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost" (1 Corinthians 12:3). The Holy Spirit does not work on us; He lives in us. The Holy Spirit makes the truth clear to us, reminding us of Jesus' teachings, helping us to understand Gods word, and helping us to do good and to avoid sin Essay: How … 1. This happens even when their object is something unimportant; because these touches proceed from the Holy Spirit they share in God's power to console and fulfill us. The Restorationists stress the courage to return to the Bible and start all over again. Finally, there is a consideration of capital importance that can motivate us to want to be faithful to these inspirations. Holiness is putting God first and obeying Him even when we do not feel like it. We have to surrender and allow the Holy Spirit to open our eyes. We may journey without constraint, our hearts not confined but expanded. " The saints themselves witness to this. Palmer was not known in her day for being a reclusive person of prayer given over wholly to the contemplation of God. When the touches of the Spirit, enlightening us and impelling us to act, are well received, they pour into our hearts not just light and strength but solace and peace, that often fills us with consolation. There are three dimensions to growing into holiness. Idealistic? In His famous “sermon on the mount” (Matthew 5-7), Jesus drew the lines which distinguished His teaching from that of contemporary Judaism. This text illustrates some of the things we have just looked at. 2 Corinthians 3:16-18 “But whenever a person turns to the Lord the veil is removed. And it isn't always what we may think. God wants our devotion most of all, and that devotion will turn us away from sins. The soul is drawn steadily on to greater faithfulness to God, a clearer perception of his will, and greater ease in accomplishing it. The whole of Scripture teaches us that it can only be the fruit of God's grace. The Spirit will never lead us into sin. St. Louis Marie Grignon de Montfort, The Secret of Mary, beginning of the first part. Her prose is a bit old-fashioned, but this is the gist of it: Palmer knew that the Spirit was prompting her to surrender to God in utter allegiance and love for God and others. God calls us to perfection, but he is not a perfectionist. That meant—among many wonderful things—that they believed in entire sanctification. I was there when my grandma listened in on such a conversation, then watched as she later called a friend and repeated the overheard conversation. But it is only at the resurrection—or at some divine moment of creation after death and prior to entering heaven—that we become finally holy. To be with God, to be devoted to God, and to walk with God mean that the companion of God is separate from the world. They inhabit both Greek and barbarian cities, according to the lot assigned to each. Yes, sexual sins and indulgence sins and greed sins and hatred sins are high on the Bible’s lists. I Was Filming a Dangerous Action Scene When I Gave My Life to Christ, Polarized Americans Still Support Religious Freedom, Complete access to articles on ChristianityToday.com, Over 120 years of magazine archives plus full access to all of CT’s online archives. There is a widespread but mistaken idea that holiness is the work of human beings: that what we need is to have a clear program of perfection, set to work with courage and patience, and achieve it little by little. This is what St. Louis Grignon de Montfort says, speaking this sanctification that is God's plan for us: However great our efforts, we cannot change ourselves. Open to the Spirit: God in Us, God with Us, God Transforming Us, When A Word Is Worth A Thousand Complaints (and When It Isn’t), Why There Are So Many ‘Miraculous’ Stories of Bibles Surviving Disaster, Ravi Zacharias’s Ministry Investigates Claims of Sexual Misconduct at Spas. The answer is repeated so often by so many that nearly everyone raises his hand with the same answer: to be holy means to be separate or different. This could be seen as one application of the promise made by Jesus in the Gospel: "Well done, good and faithful servant; you have been faithful over a little, I will set you over much. Being a person, the Holy Spirit has feelings. Here is how it went: “Grandma, do you believe in entire sanctification?”, “Grandma, I just heard you gossiping, and gossiping is sin. Holiness is first and foremost devotion to God. All we have to do is peacefully recognize and admit the fact of our weakness, and place all our trust and hope in God alone. Basically, it's very simple; but like all simple things it takes years for us to understand and, above all, to practice. How can we recognize and distinguish these motions of the Spirit?  St. Thérèse of Lisieux also witnesses to this "dynamism of faithfulness" that makes accomplishing God's will progressively easier: It should be added that this process is accompanied by the grace of joy: even though obeying the Holy Spirit is often hard for us at the start, because it conflicts with our fears, our attachments, and so forth, that obedience is always, in the end, a source of joy and happiness. For God, each person is absolutely unique. The presence of the Holy Spirit makes our hearts clean, our minds pure, our faculties to work at their full capacity, and our lives thereby fruitful to the glory of God. It underlines a central point: each act of fidelity to an inspiration is rewarded by more abundant graces, especially by more frequent and stronger inspirations. That strength can then be applied to other areas and may make us capable of one day practicing the commandments that up until then we had not been capable of fulfilling entirely. But rejecting the world is not the primary emphasis. The Holy Spirit is the third Person of the Triune God: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. Therefore, anyone who rejects this instruction does not reject a human being but God, the very God who gives you his HolySpirit. They live in their respective countries, but only as resident aliens; they participate in all things as citizens, and they endure all things as foreigners. When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come. . St. John of the Cross expresses it elsewhere in other terms: "What touches God's heart, and triumphs over it, is firm hope. We will get to see ourselves, what dwells in our flesh, through the Spirit in the light of God’s Word. Even though we know that God's will and commandments apply to everyone, we do not always have the strength to fulfill them. He treats us as only God can. " One can deduce a fundamental "spiritual law" from it: We will obtain the grace to be faithful in the important things that at present we find impossible, by dint of being faithful in the little things within our grasp, especially when those little things are the ones that the Holy spins asks of us by calling to our hearts with his inspirations. . He gives us the right words to speak about God (Acts 1:8). “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit … The spiritual disciplines don’t make us holy, nor do they make us loving. It is accompanied by an outpouring of grace that enlarges our hearts and makes our souls feel free and happy to travel along the Lord's paths: "I will run in the way of thy commandments, when thou enlargest my understanding! This does not mean that all is lost if at any time we are unfaithful to them. First, we need to practice the spiritual disciplines that promote presence with God, because contact with God is transformative. The Holy Spirit will guide us. What the Holy Spirit is up to is bringing the whole life of Jesus Christ into the whole of our personalities so that the whole love of God can be relayed to the whole world. That does not mean, of course, that we don't have to make any effort; but if our efforts are not to remain fruitless, they must be directed to the right end. The Holy Spirit also helps Christians in their weakness and intercedes for them. Jesus’ definition of holiness was one of the bones of contention between Jesus and the Jewish religious leaders of His day. He is the author of The Eight Doors of the Kingdom: Meditations on the Beatitudes, Called to Life, Real Mercy: Mary, Forgiveness and Trust, Searching for and Maintaining Peace: A Small Treatise on Peace of Heart, Interior Freedom, Fire & Light, Time for God, Thirsting for Prayer, and In the School of the Holy Spirit. Another spiritual law, which is worth taking note of and that is confirmed by experience, is this: this path of docility to the motions of the Holy Spirit may be very demanding, because "the Spirit breathes where he will," but it is a path of freedom and happiness. 11:44) and “It is God’s will that you should be holy [or sanctified]” (1 Thess. And this unction of the Spirit is unfailingly spread in the souls of those who do the good that the Holy Spirit inspires in them. The Church is holy because Jesus, who founded her, and the Holy Spirit, who dwells in and guides her, are holy. We should fight, not to attain holiness as a result of our own efforts, but to let God act in us without our putting up any resistance against him; we should fight to open ourselves as fully as possible to his grace, which sanctifies us. . Survey sets benchmarks to measure US commitment to First Amendment rights. Faithfulness to grace draws down further graces. Three Ways the Holy Spirit Guides Us into All Truth. It can happen that we make superhuman efforts to improve on one point, while God is asking us for something else. 2:13). Various questions arise from this. Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. Her response was priceless. We don’t become holy because we spend 15 minutes in the Psalms every day. He says He will guide us. by Ann Spangler. 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