Saturday, July 4, 2009

The Spirit Intercedes for Us

The Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God. (Romans 8:26-27)

I’ve been somewhat less than diligent of late in posting blogs due to a wave of busyness in my life in these days – some of it personal, most of it in the church. During seasons such as this I have found that the normal rhythm of my personal devotional time with God tends to more difficult; the physical and emotional strain of ministry can easily cause our personal spiritual walk to drift from one’s normal path. Left unchecked, such spiritual drifting can ultimately lead to moral failure both in ministry and in life. Yet in feeling that tension of early drifting in my own spirit of late, I come again to sense and know the reality of the power of the Spirit of God fighting for me – and I am deeply humbled that by His sovereign grace God does not allow me to drift too far, and exceedingly grateful that He once again faithfully called me “back home” in my walk with him. Clearly there are times during physical, emotional and spiritual stress we can sense and see and feel the blessing of Jesus’ promise: "Behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age" (Matthew 28:20).

In all of this I was reminded of the words of Robert Benson in his book Between the Dreaming and the Coming True where he writes:

Once we start home toward God – which happens the minute we start, actually – we simply do not ever turn around and head in another direction. There is no other direction. And in the moments when we feel as if we are so turned around that we will never get home, somebody turns up and nudges us a couple of points to starboard, whichever direction that is. Suddenly, without being particularly conscious of it or faithful about it, we sense that we are headed toward God again full blast. . . .

We do not always see that we should be moving about our days and lives and places with awe and reverence and wonder, with the same soft steps with which we enter the room of a sleeping child or the mysterious silence of a cathedral. There is no ground that is not holy ground. All of the places of our lives are sanctuaries; some of them just happen to have steeples.
From the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God. May you be strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy, giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light. (Colossians 1:9-12)

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