There are many of you who greatly desire to move in the spiritual gifts. You long to have the Holy Spirit empower you to prophesy, or to heal the sick, or even to drive out demons. You look on those around us who are suffering with sickness or disease and it just breaks your heart! Some of you are even thinking, if I could just have the gift of healing, so many could be healed from their pain!
This is a good and godly desire. It is the actual purpose for why Jesus gave gifts to the human race. The Bible tells us that Jesus was often moved with compassion before He healed the sick or drove out demons.
[Matthew 9:36, 14:14, 15:32; Luke 7:13, 10:33]. It also teaches us that prophecy is meant to build us up, or to comfort us or encourage us. [1 Corinthians 14:3] The reason for the gifts, therefore, is to love on God’s people and give God the glory as we minister in Jesus’ Name.
I’m not going to digress and talk about whether the gifts of the Spirit are available today.
They are, and there’s no cogent biblical argument to the contrary. No, what I want to talk to you about today is the path to obtaining and moving in the spiritual gifts.
The first thing you have to do, of course, is ask. We all know that Jesus said to “Ask and it will be given to you” [Luke 11:9] but how many of you know that Jesus told us that specifically in the context of receiving gifts from the Holy Spirit?[Luke 11:11. See also 1 Corinthians 12:31, 1 Corinthians 14:1,39.] We also know from the book of James that we have not because we ask not. [James 4:2]
But what more must we do besides ask? I believe we must aspire to have two essential qualities of character before we will be prepared to properly receive and operate in the gifts of the Holy Spirit.
The first one is patience. God distributes His gifts to us as and when He wants. The book of Hebrews says He distributes “gifts of the Holy Spirit … according to his will.”[ Hebrews 2:4. See also 1 Corinthians 12:7.]
We know that patience is a fruit of the Spirit:
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; … [Galatians 5:22-23]
To bear the fruit of the Spirit requires spending time in intimate fellowship with Jesus. So we can say that patience and the other fruits of the Spirit require time spent in the Word, in conversational prayer, and, frankly, by persevering through trials and tribulations.
The other attribute we need is meekness. This is another of the fruit of the Spirit which is often translated ‘gentleness’ as it is in this passage but is often translated as meekness in other places. Ultimately, meekness comes from full submission to the will of God for your life. Obedience flows from the realization that in spite of all your power and giftings God knows better how and when to do something than you do.
The meek person is skilled at quieting his own heart. He doesn’t look to do anything to make himself look good in other people’s eyes. He or she simply wants to bless someone else with their gift as the Lord has called them to do.
God desires that His people be patient and meek in the use of His supernatural grace, not abrupt and self-promoting. And this should not surprise us. Everything in Christianity is about denying ourselves and our desires, taking up our crosses and following Jesus in His lifestyle of sacrificial service to others in obedience to the Father. [See Matthew 16:24-25, Luke 9:23, Luke 14:33.]
May the Lord give us the grace to walk as He walked in all humility, weakness and power!
©2021 Heart of Titus Ministries, Inc.