Have You Made The Wonderful Discovery?

Have you made the wonderful discovery of the Spirit-filled life? This is the question that was used to introduce a small blue tract produced by Campus Crusade for Christ (aka CRU today) in the 1970’s. It was this tract that helped me understand that not only did the Holy Spirit play a key role in my conversion to Christ, but He also played and plays an essential role in my ability to live in victory and walk in Christ’s power each day.

One of the more humorous quirks of scientific history is the debate over who should get the credit for discovering oxygen. An article titled, “Discovery of Oxygen” tells how Joseph Priestley, an English scientist, and clergyman, is often given that honor because he was the first to publish his findings, doing so in 1774. Interestingly, Priestley originally called the gas, "dephlogisticated air."

However, in 1772, two years prior to Priestley’s find, a Swedish chemist named Carl Scheele independently discovered the gas that is vital to human existence. Strangely enough, the term oxygen didn't actually come into use until 1775, when yet another chemist, Frenchman Antoine Lavoisier, discovered and named the gas we breathe. Lavoisier was the first to recognize oxygen as one of our natural elements.

Regardless of who gets the credit, it's odd to think of a human being "discovering" oxygen. Does a fish discover water? The truth is that oxygen literally surrounds us every day, and even if we choose to call it "dephlogisticated air," we can't live without it. The same is true of the Holy Spirit. The Christian is dependent on the Holy Spirit operating within to live effectively and experience victory over the world, the flesh, and the devil.

Have you ever seen the moving sidewalks in many of the large airports? Some years ago, when I traveled frequently out of Atlanta, which is filled with terminal connecting moving sidewalks, I decided to try an experiment… I wanted to see if I could walk to the next terminal beside the moving sidewalk but without using it. My goal was to see if I could get to the next terminal at the same time as the people on the moving sidewalk. In other words, could I get there in my on power without relying on the additional help of the sidewalk. The answer quickly became obvious, no! I tried, but even walking at a very fast pace, without looking like a complete nutcase, I could not. In fact, I fell further and further behind, even to people that were just standing on the moving sidewalk. Experiment concluded and lesson learned!

On the other hand, when I’ve used the sidewalk, it gives the sensation of almost gliding and walking without effort or fatigue. That’s a fitting illustration of the difference between walking in the power of our flesh and walking in the power of God’s Holy Spirit. When we walk in the Spirit, He becomes the power beneath us to carry us forward… we are the ones doing the walking, but we are dependent on His power to enable our walk.

With that in mind, I hope you will listen carefully Sunday as I conclude our series “All Things New In the New Year” with my message titled Walk In A New Power. If you are weary, you’ll find help. If you need victory over sin, you’ll discover the secret. And if you simply need a reminder on the source of your strength, this message will encourage your heart.

I am glad you are here. I pray that you will be blessed immensely.

And remember, God is always trying to take you someplace new. I love being your Pastor!

For God’s Glory Alone,
Pastor Ray
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