In writing for my wife’s devotional list and my Running Toward the Goal podcast this week, I have been focusing on the work of the Holy Spirit and the gifts. Since I’m also focusing on gifts here, I’d like to link to a number of these posts.
- Love is Greater than Faith discusses how love is the controlling element. Faith is good, but love is what holds us together and provides the goal.
- Hurry Up and Wait II asks whether you really want the Holy Spirit. Are you ready to wait?
- Everything by his Will discusses how God is in control of everything. The Holy Spirit provides the gifts, and they are to be used in unity with the one Spirit
- Making Many One discusses Paul’s purpose in 1 Corinthians 12. He is not enumerating the gifts. Rather, he is using the gifts as an illustration of Christian unity. Just as everything is by God’s will, many are made one through the work of the one Spirit within them.
- Many Gifts, but how Many? continues the discussion of unity and enumerating gifts.
- The Spirit Moves and . . . asks what you do when the Spirit starts to move. Are you going to move too?
- Finally, Breathe In! discusses receiving the Holy Spirit and doing so in a Christ centered way. Jesus is the center and the test.
For studying the gifts in the church, Energion Publications offers two books, Identifying Your Gifts and Service, a workbook designed to be used by a teacher giving a class to a large group, and Identifying Your Gifts and Service: Small Group Edition, which is designed for small groups working on their own within the church structure.
For those who want to know how to understand, enable, and manage the apparent work of the Holy Spirit (managing the Holy Spirit would be too large a task, but there will be people with claims who need to be managed), we have Holy Smoke! Unholy Fire! by Dr. Bob McKibben. This book is written at a practical level to help pastors and church leaders especially understand how to deal with claims. Very often the work of the Holy Spirit is attacked by those who claim to be Spirit led, but who are in fact disrupting the congregation and threatening the spiritual life of other church members.