I first encountered to the power and presence of the Holy Spirit a few years ago when I joined a monthly charismatic prayer group. The profound awareness of the presence of the Holy Spirit within me never left me.
The Third Person of the Trinity
We develop a relationship with God the Father, and Jesus the Son, but what about the third person of the Trinity—the Holy Spirit? At our Baptism we received the Holy Spirit. At our Confirmation this same Spirit is stirred up anew. He is in us. We know of the gifts or charisms of the Holy Spirit, and every Christian should ask to receive these gifts and inspirations. The Holy Spirit works differently in each of us as our personalities are different. You may think of someone very expressively proclaiming praise and thanksgiving while another is quietly expressing the same prayer. In both, the Holy Spirit is manifesting gifts and inspirations.
Practicing praise and thanksgiving opens the soul to God. One of the first preparatory steps of mental prayer is acknowledging the presence of God, which is nothing more than an act of faith, hope, and love.
Acknowledging who God is opens our belief in Him, and raises hope in what He wants to give to us. With our desire God prepares us to receive more of the action of the Holy Spirit in our lives.
“What most attracts the graces of our Lord is thanksgiving. When we are thankful for the gift He gives, His heart is moved. He sends us ten times more” ~ St. Teresa of the Child Jesus.
When God sees that we are grateful for the gifts He has given us, He wants to give us more!
Invite the Holy Spirit
How can I increase the action of the Holy Spirit in my life? Here are a few ways to get started:
1. Praise and thanksgiving. Begin your daily meditation with praise and thanksgiving, and continue to thank and praise God throughout the day.
2. Ask for it! Come, Holy Spirit. Come fill the hearts of your faithful. We are petitioning and asking. Like the three-year-old child who keeps asking mom and dad over and over, or the insistent widow in the Gospel.
3. Resolve not to deny God anything. Yes, this is a tough one. Prayer of abandonment is ongoing. Note the keyword is resolve. This doesn’t mean wait until you are 100% capable of living this out in every decision of your day. No, it is a desire of our heart, even when that desire is still gaining ground it effectively becomes part of our will and choices during the day. This surrender is ongoing and a comfortable abandonment of childlike simplicity. When I see inspirations, I will follow with them confidence and trust. They can be big or small.
- A thought to text a friend to check in with them.
- A word of encouragement for a friend, child, or spouse.
- Knowing when to forgive.
Caution: In your desire to surrender to the Lord, the devil can work to encourage scrupulosity in your life. Being overly sensitive, or the constant lookout for denying Him in anything, can create a certain tension or anxiety. This isn’t where the Lord is. The Holy Spirit brings peace and openness. “God has revealed to us through the Spirit, for the Spirit searches everything, even the depths of God.” 1 Corinthians 2:10.
4. Practice and trust with filial, childlike obedience. It is important to obey His voice. “The sheep know my voice” John 10:27. Simply begin with the Ten Commandments and the Beatitudes. In doing so, we are conforming our will to the will of God. This is the beginning of many more inspirations. “And we are witnesses to these things and so is the Holy Spirit whom God has given to those who obey Him” Acts 5:32.
5. Accept God’s will. Accept the events of life. Mother Angelica said, “If it’s happening, it’s God’s will”. God permits many things, and maybe it’s not always His desire. Accept the events of your life and things beyond your control. The peaceful acceptance of what God is doing and permitting opens the soul to the action of the Holy Spirit. Lean into it, relax, allow the peace and calm to unfold the beauty of it. “We know that in everything God works for good with those who love him who are called to his purpose.” Romans 8:28.
And if this all seems daunting and impossible, I leave you with this passage to ponder from Romans 8:11 “If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will give life to your mortal bodies also through his Spirit who dwells in you.”
The same spirit that raised Jesus from the dead is the same spirit that lives in you. Wow! Think of what the Holy Spirit can do in you!!! Come, Holy Spirit, Come!
Copyright 2020 Julie Nelson
|Julie Nelson is a self described ambient introvert and Catholic “passionista.” Loving God’s sense of humor, Julie is a former nurse who now is Co-Host of Catholic Women Now weekly radio program. Speaking at the 2017 summer Well gathering, Julie is now building a speaking ministry. Her happy place is being surrounded with her family, especially by a beach or a lake. Julie lives out her childhood dream of being a fashion designer in her sewing room while binging on Fashion Runway. Julie is a member of Sacred Heart Catholic Church in West Des Moines, Iowa.|