Wednesday, May 14, 2014

You Don't Have to Work for a Gift

By Allen White

God has poured out his love into our hearts by means of the Holy Spirit, who is God’s gift to us Romans 5:5 (GN).

Spiritual growth is hard to measure. Is it how much I know? Is it how much I do? Is it what I think about? Often, I’m left feeling like I just don’t measure up. Then, trouble comes. When the pressure is on, I become more convinced than ever that I must not be “right with God.”

But look at the verse again. Does the verse say that I need to work harder at loving people or that I need to try harder to have God’s Spirit in my life? No, “God has poured His love in our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who is God’s gift.” I don’t have to work for a gift.

Let’s get practical though: if all of this has already happened, then why don’t I feel more loving? God’s Spirit is present in my life, so can I just be open to the Spirit in order for God to work? If I am open, then the Spirit produces the Fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23) and the Gifts of the Spirit (Romans 12; 1 Corinthians 12 & Ephesians 4) in my life. I don’t need to work harder at being self-controlled or at being more discerning. I just need to be open to God’s Spirit. It’s God’s gift to you and me.

What do you need to invite God to do in your life today? What character quality is lacking? What growth needs to happen? Ask God to work in one specific area starting today, then watch what happens.

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