We often talk about “walking in the Spirit,” “depending on the Spirit,” and “praying to the Spirit.” But, for a good many of us, the “Spirit” is sort of a nebulous term. We know that God is three in one and we’re comfortable with the Father, we’re great with Jesus but, it seems, we just don’t know what to do with the Spirit. So, we sort of ignore Him, like the weird relative who comes over for the holidays. We’re forced to acknowledge his presence but we keep our distance.
And I worry that it goes deeper for many of us. Though we pay lip-service to the Holy Spirit, many of us live like practical Cessationists. We live as though He quit really working in people’s lives some time after Pentecost and some time before we were born. Now, I’m not saying that we all need to start speaking in tongues (shouldaboughtahondabutIboughtamazda), though I’m also not saying we shouldn’t.
What I mean is that I’m afraid we’ve become callous to the Spirit. Recently, while at some training at Soma Communities in Tacoma, one of their elders, Abe Myersburg pointed out just how “in tune” with the Spirit’s daily work in our lives we should be. Have you ever heard something and slapped your head because it should have been so obvious all along? In helping us see the Spirit’s daily work, Abe drew from Galatians 5:22-24, where Paul writes:
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,  gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.  And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.
I’m sure we’ve all noticed that, though there are plural items listed, they are all referenced as the “fruit of the Spirit”, singular. When the Spirit is working in and through us, we will be shaped so that we displaying all of these. So, how do we foster dependence on the Spirit, not only we realize that any spiritual life in us is from Him, but throughout the day, recognize if you showed love. It was the work of the Spirit. Did you display, joy, peace, patience, etc.? It was the work of the Spirit.
I know that this may seem a bit trivial at first, after all, aren’t these natural human characteristics? Well, yes and no. Let’ push it a bit more. What if you showed love to a difficult person? How about demonstrating patience with your screaming kids? This is the work of the Spirit in us. It is this kind of daily recognition of the Spirit’s work in daily life, that, honestly, escaped me for many years. While I recognized and applauded the Spirit’s work in regeneration I was oblivious to His daily work. Thank you Abe, for pointing this out.