In 1992, Hurricane Andrew stormed the shores of Southern Florida. An elderly woman named Norena lost everything, as her home was severely damaged from the storm. Like many southern Floridians, Norena received an insurance settlement to repair her home, but the settlement was minimal; and when the money ran out, so did the contractor, leaving Norena in a home without electricity.
For fifteen years, Norena lived without power. She didn’t have any air conditioning for the humidity of Florida’s summer, or any heat for the occasional winter chills. She didn’t enjoy one hot shower, or one home cooked meal. It wasn’t until the mayor from the Miami area heard of the situation, that he hired an electrical contractor to get power restored in Norena’s home. When her home was finally repaired, CBS interviewed Norena and asked her the first thing she would do with electricity. She responded, “I’m going to take a really hot, long bubble bath.” Can you blame her?
How many baptized believers have lived decades, or maybe even their entire lives, without fully understanding the power of the Holy Spirit? The Holy Spirit, though it might be theologically obscure and confusing, gives us power as God’s people. Without it, we cannot do what God has called us to do. And if we aren’t very careful, we can “turn off” the Spirit’s power for so long, we won’t recognize it when it comes back on.
Paul told the church at Ephesus, “So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature.” (Ephesians 5:16) Are you living with power or without power? Live by the Spirit, and you’ll immediately know!