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Posted by Paul Edwards (Fr. Paul) on May 16, 2013 | Comments (0)


Trinity Sunday

Bottom Line Spirituality: Worldly and Godly Thinking

Click here to go to the Bottom Line Meditations for Trinity Sunday

Godly Abiding Spiritually in Jesus Changes the Meaning of What we See Worldly When Not Abiding in Jesus.

Spirituality is our innate ability to feel the difference worldly or godly thinking makes to the way scripture translates to our daily life and relationships.

 

Remember: The DISCIPLE-SHIFT

(see Pentecost Sunday Meditation by Clicking Here)

The Virtual Small Group

Members share once a week with their group through the internet when a shift from being out to being in the Presence made a difference.

 

Jesus took common words and gave them the spiritual meaning of being in the Presence of the Spirit.  Here the word “truth” means experiencing the Presence rather than a theological belief.

Some who have received the Spirit by grace turn to legalism. To be able to make the shift from legalism to grace is to be able to taste, touch and feel legalism in order to know the difference between the two.

“When the Spirit of truth comes, He will guide you into all the truth” John 16:13

Most people have a better knowledge and experience with God the Creator and Jesus the Savior than the Holy Spirit the giver of Truth. Trinity Sunday is a time to emphasize the Spirit. St. Augustine wrote that the first two thousand years were the years of the Father. The next two thousand years were the years of The Son. He then prophesied that the third two thousand years will be the years of the Holy Spirit. We are now at the very start of the coming Age of the Holy Spirit.

There was a recent time when more people knew about the Power of the Holy Spirit than perhaps today. It started in the early 1960’s when Dennis Bennett lit a charismatic spark that created a fire of the Sprit. The Spirit went through most of the mainline churches. 

I know this from a personal view. Our parish was deeply involved in this movement. The signs were all around us. There was an excitement of building a community centered on a common experience of the Love of the Spirit of Jesus. We grew from a community of 60 Sunday worshippers to over 350. Walls were broken down and a large parish hall was built. Scripture was read, shared and used. The freedom to give out of gratitude and love opened up stewardship and outreach for others in need.  The signs of the gifts of the Holy Spirit were all about. The Parish became well known by the West Coast Episcopal Charismatic Fellowship. We helped sponsor yearly conferences where, at one session, there were over 1,500 participants.

A strange thing happened between the early sixties and the late eighties. It was sudden. It seemed as if the Spirit left the mainline Church. Today few new members have ever heard of those days.

I write this not to tell tales of times gone by. I write as one who was there as rector of a major charismatic parish from the beginning to the end. I have stayed on in the mainline Episcopal Church. I know firsthand what happened. The Spirit did not leave the Church. It went deeper by moving from legalism to grace. Many times those in a renewal movement are the ones most opposed when a new renewal starts up. It is because we lose contact of what Jesus said. It is the Holy Spirit that is to lead us into all truth. We are not the light. We are called to witness to the Light. Apart from Jesus we can do nothing.

If we are to follow the Spirit we need to understand how to live and walk in the Spirit. It does not take years of research or study. It is here in plain view. To enter the age of the Spirit we need to know how to do it. The polluted baggage of “do to be” legalism is too heavy to carry into the fresh air of “be to do” grace. It does not take a rocket scientist to know how to access the Spirit of Jesus that God has poured into our hearts. Physical things that exist are rationally seen while spiritual things that exist are consciously sensed.

In the age of the Spirit, Bible Study will be based on Jesus as the Word of God. His Love commandments changed all the Law and the Prophets. His New Commandment was how to Love others by being in the Presence of His Love.

We have first been given the season of the Law, then the season of the New Covenant. “The law came through Moses, Grace and truth came through Jesus Christ, John 1:14. We are now in the season of grace. We cannot know grace unless we can taste, touch, feel and smell legalism. We can start by daily wondering what difference it makes to be living under the law or in the grace. Our choice in this Age of Grace is to live under the law or by the fruit of the Spirit. The Law creates our dissatisfaction, stress, hurt anger and loneliness out of the Presence of God. In His Presence, we spiritually live in His Love that nothing can separate us from, His Peace that passes our understanding and His Joy that no one a can take from us. Galatians 5:18  In His Presence, the Holy Spirit will lead us all into a Truth and Wisdom we could never have when trying to control our life out of His Presence. The Season of the Spirit is the season of choice; not God’s choice, but our choice. We choose to live where we want to live by being able to make the shift from being led by the law of legalism to living in the Spirit of Grace.


THE DISCIPLE-SHIFT: The Virtual Small Group:  Members share once a week with their group through the internet when a shift from being out to being in the Presence made a difference.

 

 


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