1 Thessalonians 5:19
Don't stifle the Holy Spirit.
If you are new to this blog, for the past several days I have been writing over ways to be an encourager. All of these ways are found in 1 Thessalonians 5:11-23. So far we have learned about:
Build each other up.
Honor/Respect Spiritual Leaders.
Live in Peace
Warn the Lazy
Encourage the shy/timid
Help the Weak
And today's is......
Don't stifle the Holy Spirit.
Right now, I figure you are having one of two emotions. 1) I already know all about this or 2) What in the world does 'stifle' mean?
To 'stifle' the Holy Spirit (or Ghost if you are so inclined to call him that), means that you ignore the it in your life. You basically squander your spiritual gifts (ie the gifts given to you by the Holy Spirit).
Do you know what your spiritial gift is? If you do, I'd love for you to share because I'm not entirely sure what mine is yet. I took a test once (yes, I did) and it said that mine were encouraging and teaching. I had a lady the other night tell me that mine was giving hope (which I'm not sure I see-- but it was a nice thought). While online tests are fun, I believe that the real answer of what your gift(s) is comes from God and your prayers with Him--- and what He puts in your heart.
So, what are some of the spiritual gifts? Well, I had to google it because I wasn't entirely sure.
I found this site (http://bible.org/article/gifts-spirit ) that talks about it. I'm not going give the scriptures (you can find it there), but I am going to list the 20 things it has in bold type (it also lists 7 other gifts at the bottom).
Here are the ones that are listed: prophesy, service, teaching, exhortation, giving, leadership, mercy, wisdom, knowledge, faith, healing, miracles, distinguishing spirits, speaking in tongues, intrepretation of tongues, apostleship, helps, administration, evangelism, pastor.
I'm going to add that I believe that anything you do well (and or do it for God) is your gift.
The Holy Spirit gives us these gifts (and not everyone has the same one-- and none are more awesome than the other) so we can encourage others and lead them to God. If we didn't have the Holy Spirit with us, we'd fall back into the world. He gives us boldness to talk to others and helps us realize our gifts and use them to glorify God and to win people to Him.
if you stifle your gift (ie don't think it's "good" enough, too shy to do it, question it.... for a long time, tell God he's nuts and you aren't going to do it, etc) then you will hurt the entire body of God. Even if your pinky finger hurts-- your whole finger hurts. Same with the whole spiritual body. If the pinky falls by the way, everyone suffers and feels defeated. You not doing what you are supposed to do can DISCOURAGE someone from doing what they are supposed to do (and we definitely don't want that).
So, pray about your gift. What has God called you to do for Him? Are you going at it full force, or are you fighting it?
God Bless You.