Christians were never meant to follow Jesus in their own might. I say this because a Christian’s life is supposed to produce superior results which we can’t attain on our own. Additionally, the results we produce ought to be so spectacular that those who witness them glorify God [Matthew 5:16]. Furthermore, Paul explains that we’re jars of clay carrying the extraordinary power of God [2 Corinthians 4:7]. Therefore, the results we produce validates our walk with God. They manifest His power at work in us. One of the tragedies of our times is that Christians are often indistinguishable from non-Christians because those superior results are lacking.
Jesus knew we couldn’t carry on His ministry without supernatural help. So, just before returning to heaven, He commanded His disciples to wait for the Holy Spirit. He told them that when the Holy Spirit came upon them, they would receive power. Then they would become His witnesses throughout the world [Acts 1:4-8]. The book of Acts in the Bible is the historical account of what happened after those disciples received that power. The transforming presence of the Holy Spirit was undeniable in those disciples. The once timorous disciples stood boldly before kings, councils and vicious mobs to proclaim Jesus Christ. They converted thousands as they preached the gospel with power, signs and wonders. As the Holy Spirit empowered their witness of Jesus, they raised the dead, exorcised demons, experienced supernatural prison breaks, and even their shadows healed the sick. Consequently, not even their enemies could deny their results.
Apparently, there are about two billion Christians in the world today. Incredibly, the same power that raised Jesus from the dead already resides in each of them [Romans 8:11]. But where are the results? Could it be that the power of the Holy Spirit is lying dormant and unfruitful within us? It doesn’t add up that such power lies within us and there’s no tangible evidence, does it? Jesus said that what He did was evidence that the Father was in Him, and anyone who believes in Him would do what He did and even greater things [John 14:11-12]. Did He mean what He said or was He mocking us? If you believe He meant it, is it your lived experience? That’s a question that haunts me because I fall short of the supernatural results Jesus and the disciples in Acts produced.
Many Christians may ignore this reality but honestly, I don’t want to get to heaven and realise that I could have lived a far superior life compared to my current experience. Ignorance, unbelief and pride are some of the reasons we fall short of experiencing all God has in store for us. Sadly, many Christians are unaware of who we are in Christ and its implications [Ephesians 2:1-10]. As Hosea said, God’s people perish for lack of knowledge [Hosea 4:6]. Just imagine an heir to a wealthy estate living as a homeless beggar because he’s unaware of his inheritance, and it will begin to paint a picture of the consequences of our ignorance as children of God. Our Father never intended for us to be ignorant of who we are and the power we possess, but we will suffer the consequences if we’re wilfully ignorant of His word.
Unbelief is such a powerful obstacle to experiencing God’s power in our life. The truth is what God can accomplish through us is limited by our faith, not God’s ability. I struggle with this because you can’t fake faith since faith is a product of convictions, and those convictions are attained through revelation. We can accumulate knowledge i.e. know of God but that’s different from knowing God. Truly knowing God happens through revelation [Matthew 16:13-17]. However, revelation comes through abiding in Jesus [John 15:1-8]. This requires discipline, but many of us shun the sacrifice this necessitates. Therefore, we produce unremarkable results. Why try to fake what can be real and infinitely more spectacular?
The Bible has nothing good to say about pride. Actually, a proud man makes God his enemy [James 4:6]. Moreover, God doesn’t share His glory with anyone [Isaiah 42:8], we wouldn’t be able to handle it without falling victim to pride. As such, pride will certainly prevent the manifestation of God’s power in our lives. The truth is we are entirely powerless [John 15:5]. Powerless to live right, fight sin, love God and others, etc. But often our pride prevents us from admitting our weaknesses. On the contrary, a humble person has no issues admitting weakness and asking for help. As Paul teaches us, our weakness is a prerequisite for manifesting God’s power [2 Corinthians 12:9-10].
It’s time to analyse our lives and ask serious questions. Questions like “am I experiencing God’s power in my life? Is my life all that God intends it to be?” The phrase “filled with the Holy Spirit” is used often in the book of Acts. The word filled denotes operating under the influence of the Holy Spirit. We become His bond-slaves, completely yielding our lives to the purposes of the Holy Spirit. This requires a total surrender of our ego [Philippians 1:21-22]. It also implies that we say what the Holy Spirit instructs us to say, do what He instructs us to do and live how He instructs us to live. When this happens, the transformation in us will be undeniable and the results, utterly spectacular.
I don’t write as someone who has experienced spectacular results yet. Nevertheless, I earnestly desire them. Moreover, Jesus said we could and should have spectacular results. That said, am I doing the things that necessitate the manifestation of God’s power in my life? Do I know what those things are? My life will either be ordinary or spectacular. Evidently, I get to decide which. The results will reveal my choice.