The Lord often gives me little spiritual lessons through interactions with my children. I hope this will encourage some of you out there.
Several weeks ago, my children were out of school for President’s Day. I paused from my work and went to give my wife a break from watching our little guys. My wife was snuggling with Andrew, our 3-year-old, while they watched the movie Tangled.
My wife needed to do some work, so she got up, and I began to lay down where she had been. Immediately Andrew started yelling at me, “No! No! I don’t want you!”
At the same time, Gavin, our 5-year-old, was at the foot of the chair. While Andrew was yelling at me: “I don’t want you,” Gavin was saying: “Daddy, will you come play Sorry! with me?”
Sorry! is his favorite board game.
I immediately jumped up and said, “No problem, Andrew. Gavin wants me, so Daddy will just go over here.” And that’s exactly what I did. I happily went over to where Gavin was, and we began spending quality time together.
I wasn’t mad at Andrew.
I wasn’t even really that hurt by his actions.
What he wanted was his mom. That’s not a bad thing to want… it’s just not me—his father.
Some people shake their fists and yell at the Holy Spirit and His gifts: “No! I don’t want you! I’m fine just like I am! I don’t need anything new or different. I’m very comfortable with what I already have!”
Just as quickly as the wind changes direction, the Holy Spirit happily moves on to those who do want Him.
“The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear its sound, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.” – John 3:8 (ESV)
The Holy Spirit Loves Drawing Closer to You
Here’s the encouragement for those who want more of the Holy Spirit: He wants you too! As you are drawing near to Him, and asking for more of His presence, He immediately begins moving toward you. He’s excited to spend time with you, and He loves that you’ve asked for more of Him!
But the benefits don’t stop there.
Gavin had already set up the pieces for Sorry! including all of the cards. As we began playing, I laughed because I realized he had set the game up to be completely rigged in his favor. He had the first seven cards or so prearranged to get himself off to a great start.
Now, it actually did look like for a short time like I was catching up and moving ahead of him in the game. But in the end, he won. It was, in fact, all rigged in his favor.
You’re Rigging Everything in Your Own Favor
When you seek more of the Holy Spirit, you are actually rigging everything in your own favor. When you stop focusing too much on the material blessings, the personal vindication, and other personal blessings—and instead try to focus on God, staying close to Him, blessing others, and doing His work—you are setting yourself up to win! The other stuff will come automatically.
“But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” – Matthew 6:33 (ESV)
I have one last detail to share. Gavin and I played our game and just a couple of minutes later, he made a huge mess in the bathroom. I came in right behind him, saw the mess, and cleaned it up. When I said something to him about the mess, he just laughed, and I did too.
Intimacy With God is Friendship With God
“I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.” – John 15:15 (NIV)
When you are walking closely with the Lord, your relationship will feel more like that of best friends than of master and servant. The two of you can laugh—even about your mistakes. I’m not saying mistakes don’t matter. But the Lord is big enough to handle them. And when you’re trying your best, He’s not sitting up in Heaven getting mad at you about your missteps.
He’s right there with you.
He delights in forgiving you.
He even delights in cleaning up the mess!
If you’re interested in more of the Holy Spirit, check out our latest release. Speaking in Tongues: Enjoying Intimacy With God Through Tongues and Interpretation