Ever since we were born, our brains have taught us how to determine harmful from beneficial. From the food we eat, to the comfort of an embrace, we grow up to follow and accept the things that are pleasing to us. But how do we actually measure the benefits that certain things or people can give us, by what these things or people present before us?
How highly we consider a person, or how valuable we think an object is in our lives depends on what it is offering us in return, even if it is not evident. A person’s company, for example can be considered beneficial, even though this person isn’t really doing anything. But you want them to stay there, because the contrary would mean having to be alone. A smile, a small favour, a great friendship and even love are all founded on the basis that it brings us a benefit. As hard as it is to accept this truth, it is the nature of all living things. When we think about how our image is perceived by others, the same idea applies. What we present to others will determine how acceptable we are.
When God created man, He allowed us to have free will and determine how our lives would play out. Thousands of years later, He poured down His Spirit and promised to baptise all those who would seek Him wholeheartedly. But what does that really mean?
When we understand that everything we do in our lives is a series of presentations of offerings to God, then we also find out what God’s opinion is of us. From the small things to the big things, all of our actions can be considered good or bad before God. They are all offerings to Him. That is why many people fail to have a true experience with God and receive His Spirit. They offer bad offerings in their day to day lives. They fail to understand that even the small things they do can affect their lives, be it negative or positive.
We see evidence of this in the Bible, when Elijah challenged the followers of Baal to call upon their god to answer their prayers in order to prove the he was real. When they failed to do so after hours of chants and sacrifices, Elijah prepared his own altar, presented a sacrifice to God and watered the area around the altar. Notice that he did this in a time of terrible drought. Having prayed for just a few seconds, God answered and poured down fire upon the sacrifice. Elijah proved to everyone present that God was true and powerful. But we must be aware that God didn’t answer Elijah because of the sacrifice itself. He answered him because of his continuous presentation of good offerings. In other words, his behaviour, courage and daily actions pleased God so much that it provoked immediate responses whenever Elijah called upon Him. God honoured him because of the person that he was and the faith that he maintained in Him, even when faced with death.
That is why, in order to receive the purest and most perfect Personin all the universe, we have to present to Him the purest and most perfect version of ourselves. People who allow themselves to have certain liberties, are not presenting good enough offerings in order to receive God’s fire, which in present times means His Spirit. They believe in God, but there is a difference between acknowledging His existence and giving your entire life to Him by deciding to obey and serve Him. Many people say they believe in God but that is not enough to receive His most precious gift, which is the Holy Spirit. In order to receive Him, you have to offer your life. When you let go of grudges, badmouthing, hatred, jealousy, lust and everything that is damaging to you, and start presenting good fruits to God, only then will He make you an extension of Himself here on earth.
The secret of those who overcome in His name, is that they have the Spirit of God inside them. They don’t succumb to depression, sadness nor the ire that consumes people nowadays. Those who follow Christ for decades and are still standing, owe their strength to the Spirit that lives in them. And they only received and maintained the Spirit because of the continuous good offerings that they present to God. Their behaviour, resilience and courage are a testament that they belong to Him, and that is why He empowers them.
The Holy Spirit will only come upon those who are truly determined to deny their own desires and obey God. He is a gift reserved only for those who challenge their own carnal instincts in order to obtain a heavenly nature, regardless of everything else that is going on in their lives. It is a continuous daily challenge to our own human nature, but when it is done honestly and wholeheartedly, God gives you strength to overcome. If you make the decision to take on this challenge, then nothing will stand in your way because He will give you victory. He will surely pour down His fire upon you.