Tag Archives: Holy Spirit


In recent months our country has seem untold devastation. Drought and fires, then landslides in the west. Last year we had the severe winter weather. This year, thus far, the winter has been the warmest on record rocking the Midwest and eastern states with unprecedented flooding and tornadoes and high winds. Even Europe has been having similar weather. Racial tensions have been on the rise. Terrorist attacks and serial killings are nearly a daily event. How can anyone sleep at night in a world that seems to be turning upside down? How do we find peace when there is no peace in this world?

The Gift Of the Holy Spirit

The Lord has a gift to give you to help you with that.. Jesus said that he would pray to the Father and that he (the father) would send another comforter to abide with us forever. (John 14:16. In the next verse (17) he said that this comforter was the Spirit of truth which the world could not receive because they did not see or know that Spirit, but that with Believers in Christ, he would dwell with them and IN them.

Later in John 14:26 he says the comforter which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in his name (Jesus) would teach us all things and bring  to our memories what Christ has told us. .In John 15:26, he reiterates that the Comforter is the spirit of truth who comes from the Father and testifies of Jesus. . John 16:7 he says that it would be better for his disciples if Jesus went away because then he would send the comforter. The Comforter could not come until he went away and Jesus sent for him.

In John 16:8-15, Jesus explains the purpose that the Holy Spirit will serve. This Spirit of Truth would convict the world of sin and convince of them of their need for His righteousness. There is no righteousness in this world system. The world is corrupt. Period.  If we are to escape his judgment, we will have to accept His righteousness.  The Spirit of Truth comes to live in us to guide us in the way that God has prepared for us. The Spirit will show us the good things that God wants for us.

What is the Difference between the Holy Spirit and the Holy Ghost

Don’t be confused to think that the Holy Ghost and the Holy Spirit are two different things. Spirit and Ghost means breath both in the Hebrew and Greek.  In Genesis, it says that God breathed into Adams nostrils his breath. When man sinned, the breath of God died in him and went from an immortal being to a mortal one. Because Adam sinned and we continue Adam’s traditions of sin, our mortal bodies will die. The only way for us to live again is to accept Christ and to allow his Spirit to dwell in us.

When the Holy Spirit Came

Because our bodies are born into sin, they will die. However, Jesus gave us his spirit to live in us. His spirit came into the believers on the Jewish holiday known as Pentecost. It was part of the law that God gave to Moses. Pentecost means fifty. In the upper room, in Acts 2, the believers had gathered for Pentecost and they were all in one accord praying. Suddenly there came a rushing mighty wind and it filled the house. Above their heads they could see tongues of fire and suddenly they began to speak with other tongues. People heard them praising God in their own languages. Peter suddenly understood something from the book of Joel. He told that in the last days that God would pour out his Spirit on all Flesh and that young men would see visions and old men would dream dreams.

My Personal Experience

I first accepted Christ at Christmas the year I turned five. I remember telling my Dad what Jesus had done for me in that he died for me. Several years later, I remember coming home from a church service. It was in May, and I wouldn’t be surprised if it had been Pentecost Sunday. (The timing was right). I must have been about nine or ten. The reason I remember that is because I remember I was wearing a dress that I wore to my cousin’s wedding and that was the age I was when I had the dress. I remember that I came home and was sitting in my mother’s flower garden and i was facing the orchard where the apple trees were in bloom. The grass was green and everything was in flower. I remember feeling so grateful for everything that God had done. I remember I started singing a song that I knew. The song that comes to mind now is “For the Beauty of the Earth”. Anyway I remember singing song after song that I knew, but they never seemed to be enough. I felt I needed praise Him with something more. Suddenly, I started singing in a language that I did not know.

Over the years after that, whenever I felt especially happy or afraid I would start singing in that language, and whenever I did sing in that language, I sensed a connection with God that I didn’t normally have.

I didn’t know about Acts Chapter Two experience until years later. I remember that a friend invited me to her parents’ church. She warned me not to be afraid because “they did things differently there”. I remember that night because a lot of people who were there spoke in an unknown language and I watched a man be healed of a heart attack. I wasn’t afraid, on the contrary, I was actually relieved to know that I wasn’t the only one who had this type of experience.

The Holy Spirit Available to Everyone? Yes! Tongues? Maybe

Should every Christian speak in tongues? I don’t know. I can only tell you about my experience. I think it is wrong for us to decide for others exactly what their experience is Christ is supposed to be. All I can tell you is that Christ wants YOU to have his spirit dwelling in you.  God wants to breathe his spirit into you and change you into the image of him that he wants you to be. That image is the best that you can be because it is the perfect you that he intended for you to be..

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Donna Brown is pastor at Faith in God Church  1 1/2 miles south of Brandsville, Missouri on Hwy 63. Sunday services are at 10 am and Wednesday night Bible Study at 6:30 pm.   As Author Cygnet Brown, she  has recently published her first nonfiction book: Simply Vegetable Gardening: Simple Organic Gardening Tips for the Beginning Gardener

She is also the author of historical fiction series The Locket Saga. which includes When God Turned His Head and Soldiers Don’t Cry, the Locket Saga Continues, and most recently, A Coward’s Solace, Book III of the Locket Saga.For more information about Cygnet Brown and her book, check out her website at .

Christ in the Wilderness, Ivan Kramskoy

In the first couple of verses in Matthew 4, we see that after Jesus’ baptism, the Spirit leads him into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. And when he had fasted 40 days and 40 nights and when that period of time was past, Jesus was hungry.

The first thing that I notice here is that the Holy Spirit led Jesus. This wasn’t something that Jesus decided to do on his own because he thought it was a good idea or even that it was a tradition. It was neither. The average person of his day did not go into the wilderness and fast 40 days and nights. The Bible only mentions 4 men who fasted that long. Moses (Deuteronomy 9:9, 18, 25; 10:10), Joshua (Exodus 24:13-18; 32:15-17), Elijah( I Kings 19:7-18), and Jesus (Matthew 4:1-11, Luke 4:1-13).

The second thing to notice is the purpose of the fast. The Holy Spirit led Jesus into the wilderness. The wilderness was a desolate, dry place. Centuries earlier the children of Israel were lead out of Egypt (a symbol for sin) into the wilderness. The Israelites were sent into the wilderness where God spoke to them through Moses. They had been taken away from all other cultural influences and God fed them and kept them clothed for 40 years. During that time they were cleansed of Egyptian influences. The adults who would not forget Egypt died there in the wilderness. Once the Israelites were cleansed of their Egyptian influence, they were able to fulfill the mission they were given to go in and subdue the land of Canaan. Without the wilderness experience, I doubt they could have been as effective as they were.

The Bible does not tell about what Jesus experienced in the wilderness during those 40 days. However, based on the Israelites’ experience, I believe I can guess.I believe he spent his time praying and meditating on scripture. During the 40 days and nights of his fast, Jesus spent his every waking hour in communion with his father.  This was his time to get away from the Roman and Jewish cultures that he had grown up in. He may have even spent time with The Father outlining his ministry and all that he had to fulfill before the Roman soldiers led him to the cross.

Fasting for Physical Reasons

Although most people do not fast 40 days and 40 nights, people do fast in our culture for a shorter period of time. Many people fast simply for physical reasons. When we fast, our digestive systems shut down and our bodies have a chance to cleanse themselves of toxins. By fasting we help our bodies heal by giving the digestive system a rest. In today’s society with its harmful colorants and preservatives, fasting for physical reasons can help prevent many chronic diseases.

A couple of years ago I fasted when I had bronchitis.Prior to the fast, I had been taking over the counter medications that seemed to actually make the symptoms worse. Because of this, I stopped taking the medications. It wasn’t a planned fast though,  I simply wasn’t hunger so I didn’t eat. I just drank juices and water for about 2 weeks.

I broke the fast gradually. At first I ate fruits and vegetables, then slowly I added lean meats and nuts, then bread, and finally dairy.  I felt better than I did before I became sick.

Fasting for Spiritual Reasons

Fasting not only benefits us physically, but it also benefits us spiritually if we fast for the right reasons.

I knew a man once whose wife had decided to divorce him, so he started fasting to get God to make her reconsider. Did his wife change her mind? Of course not, the man was trying to manipulate God. Contrary to what some people believe, fasting cannot manipulate God into doing what we want him to do.

What fasting does is put our physical bodies under submission to the Spirit. The most effective Spiritual break through occurs when we are able to separate ourselves from our cultural situations. This occurs when we get into by ourselves with God.   If we would turn off our televisions, our cell phones, our computers, and fast physical desires, God is better able to work through us because we have submitted ourselves to him.

As I remember the physical fast I had and write about the spiritual fast, I think that it may be about time that I consider another fast. I can see how I am controlled physically by many of my own lusts. All the control I had over my body after that physical fast I had two years ago has disappeared. I am overweight and have little control over what I eat. What if I added more of the Spiritual component to it? What if I submitted more of my time to The Word of God and prayer. What if I turned off my television and severely limited the use of my computer. What difference would that make in my Spiritual Walk?

What are your thoughts about this subject?

John the Baptist

If we read our Bible in order, Matthew 3 is the first place that we meet John the Baptist, and here we see him preaching a warning at the Pharisees and Sadducees. In Luke1:5-25, however we learn about the unique circumstances of John the Baptist’s conception.

A priest named Zacharias and his wife Elizabeth (who was also of the priestly line because she was an descendant of Aaron’s line) were old and had no children. One day while Zacharias was fulfilling his duties as a priest by burning incense when he went into the temple, an angel of the Lord (Gabriel) appeared to him.

The angel told Zacharias that he and his wife Elizabeth would have a son and name him John. John would not drink alcohol and would be filled with the Holy Spirit even before he was born. Because of John, many of the children of Israel would turn to the Lord their God. Because Zacharias did not believe what Gabriel had told him, he could not speak.  Elizabeth conceived.

Mary (with child with the son of God) went to visit Elizabeth when Mary was newly pregnant and Elizabeth was five months pregnant and when Mary announced her arrival, both Elizabeth and the unborn John were both filled with the Holy Spirit. Mary, then, prophesied concerning John (Luke 1:39-56) . John is born and the family wants to name him after his father, but Elizabeth said that his name was John.

When the family asked Zacharias, (because he had the final say), because he was still mute wrote on a tablet that his name was John. Immediately, Zacharias could again speak and the first words out of his mouth was to prophecy. (Luke1:57-79. John grew up strong physically and spiritually and lived in the desert until he began his ministry.

John’s ministry was as a priest and a prophet. He was the one to make way for the coming of the Lord.  John’s ministry was all about repentance. His represented the best of what man could offer before the resurrection of Jesus Christ. The best that man could bring himself to under the law was to learn that he full of sin and that sin was detestable. John’s ministry pointed at the only one who could save us.  That’s where Jesus steps in. He takes us beyond ourselves and into something truly amazing, but first we have to be willing to accept John’s baptism of repentance. We must recognize that we are not able to save ourselves. There is something far more complete–the immersion into the name (authority) of Jesus Christ.

My husband and I have been attending North Point Church, the East Sunshine Campus since February shortly after we moved here to Springfield. In just a few short months, we met a lot of loving, giving people. It did not take us long to feel like we were becoming part of a community of like minded people who wanted a relationship with Christ as much as we do. We loved the worship, we loved the sermons, we loved the way that the church encouraged everyone to get involved. My husband grew up in this neighborhood, so we felt like this campus in this neighborhood was the perfect solution to “where God wanted us to attend church”.

Then on June twenty-ninth, everything started to unravel. The Senior Pastor of North Point Church Tommy Sparger admitted to moral failure. He admitted to having a year long affair. I had met Tommy the week before when he visited the North Point East Sunshine Campus. My impression of him was that he seemed humble. I told him that the reason I was there because of him. Then I said no, that wasn’t true, it was because of Jesus Christ and his work on the cross. He nodded and he moved on to speak with someone else.

His sin was not done in isolation. It affected a multitude of people and the situation was difficult for all of us,but we worked to process what had happened. The church body really seemed to try to pull together after that. It was though there was a death in the family, a very significant death. The one thing that we all felt was hope that God would bring us out of this experience, stronger than ever before.

We didn’t realize that not all the dominoes had fallen yet. On August 13th, the church board brought the attendees of the East Sunshine Campus together to let us know that because of financial circumstances beyond our control, the church had to close down the campuses of East Sunshine and Nixa at least temporarily.

Because of this one man, many came to know the Lord, therefore this same man’s sin has affected us too. (Nothing illegal, just poor judgement.)

As it says in John 10:10

The thief comes to kill, steal, and destroy, (Jesus said) I am come that they might have life and that they might have it more abundantly. John 10:10

We have to remember that it was SIN that nailed Jesus Christ to the cross that day. Of course, it was not HIS own sin that did it, it was OUR that nailed him there.

The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord Romans 6:23

As our church continues to grieve through its time of loss because of the sin of this one individual, I am reminded of how Christ’s disciples felt when he was crucified. Things had not gone as they had planned. The leader was gone, so they backed off from ministry. They hid because they were afraid of what future held.

But God had other plans for them. Christ rose from the dead. He was alive! Death no longer had a hold on him! Fifty days later, God gave them power to turn  the entire world right side up with  the Power of the Holy Spirit.

Just as God allowed the disciples to retreat to regroup, he has allowed us to retreat to regroup. God wants to give us a New Life and he wants to renew us with the gift of His Holy Spirit. He wants to solidify our faith in him, not in anyone else. He wants us to know that he has a greater work for us to do. God has a new beginning planned for us. He asks us just to do one thing. We need to open ourselves up to where the  Holy Spirit is leading us. We need to learn to wait on God to make the next move.

In my last post,  as we finished Chapter One of First  Corinthians, we learned that the Greeks used logic and the Jews used their understanding of the law  to understand everything. We learned that, because of their limited thinking, they did not understand God’s plan of salvation through the work of Jesus Christ on the cross. Today, in chapter two, we will discover how the Corinthians, and consequently, how we can develop wisdom of his powerful grace and love.

In the first few verses of this chapter (2:1-5) Paul refuses to take credit for the insights into God’s word that he gave them. He said that he was weak and fearful. I can imagine how he felt. I know that anytime I stand in front of an audience, my mouth gets dry, my hands shaky and sweaty. and i am afraid that I will make a serious mistake. But Paul did not depend on his own abilities.

Paul knew that he wasn’t the eloquent speaker. He depended on the Holy Spirit to guide him in all wisdom. Because he chose to follow the Holy Spirit, his  contribution to our understanding of God’s plan for humankind is outstanding. He wrote much of what became the New Testament. I believe this is in a large part, as he says in verse 2:2,  because he decided that he would put his focus on Jesus Christ and him crucified. I believe that if we also learn the power of Jesus and his crucifixion, our lives would be revolutionized as well.

In verses 6-9, Paul humbled himself to the wisdom of God. The wisdom of God is the gospel of Jesus Christ. None of the rulers of this world system recognized this revelation. If they would have known, they would not have had him crucified. The prophets, nor the angels understood, but God made clear the mystery of the gospel through the apostles. God gives his wisdom to those who love him.

We discover in the remainder of the chapter that we can only understand God through his spirit. Our puny little minds cannot possibly compare to God’s wisdom.

The closest comparison I can give concerning this is by comparing the processing capabilities of our personal computers with the the knowledge of the internet. Our home computers have memory and they are truly amazing at what they can do, but compared to the internet, our computers are very limited. When we plug into the internet, we have access to so much more. .

Think about how foolish God must see us when we try to rationalize and explain away God. That’s why our minds are not sufficient to understand God. We need his spirit guiding us and revealing his truth in our lives. Just as our computers are inferior to the internet in supplying us with knowledge, so is our minds are inferior to what God’s spirit has to offer us. By having God’s spirit, we gain the mind of Christ.

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