"If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us." 1 John 1:8
Today we examine what happens when seeds begin to sprout, bursting forth from the dirt. This is a time to remember that mixed with those good plants bursting forth, there will also be weeds or tares right beside them. At this early stage, it can be difficult to tell what is a weed and what is a plant. It’s much easier for the experienced gardener to identify these different plant types. But for the early gardener, the young believer in Jesus, there is simply excitement about the plants which come up from the ground.
There is actually great value in differentiating early which are weeds and which are good plants. You might even need some help to do that. What if you had a manual with pictures of what good and bad plants looked like, or even a textual description? Imagine again if you could look early and see what plants are seedlings from the garden planted and what are weeds that are growing up beside. Now, imagine that you had someone with you all the time through this process; a helper.
First of all, we need to be aware that we do have a guide. That guide is God’s truth; the Bible. It is a way to see what is good and what is bad. But this is not the only way, nor is it the fastest. Do you remember the idea of a helper in the garden who would reveal to us what is bad and what is good? We have that Helper. I am referring of course to the Holy Spirit. He is the Helper or, as Jesus called Him, the comforter. His job is to reveal to us what is right and wrong and to teach us to love and serve God and others.
I’m not sure this amazing truth is emphasized in the church enough today. So often people shy away from what they cannot see or don’t fully understand. The Holy Spirit is a person. This person of God, known as His Spirit, lives within us.
He guides and He teaches.
He directs and He encourages.
He convicts and He regenerates.
He has also been misunderstood and quenched horrifically over the years. How could a sovereign God allow this? Quite simply, God allows us to make choices.
When we choose to ignore Him and sin, we are quenching Him. It is as if we are placing a bottle of cold water on a hot fire. Shouldn’t we rather see the Holy Spirit, for who He is? We can, instead seek to understand the Holy Spirit and seek from a Biblical perspective to find what He has for us.
Ask yourself, how well do you know the Spirit of God? Do you seek after what He seeks after? The Word says that the Spirit will always point you to Christ. Do you sense Him leading you and guiding you? Do you sense Him directing you when you do things that glorify God and also convicting you when you don’t?
Do you know what He likes and doesn’t like? Do you know His voice?
The Spirit is the Helper we talked about in the garden.
The One who would help you identify what are weeds and what are truly seedlings.
The Helper is the Holy Spirit.