Five years ago I was working as a promoter for a college. I drove from state to state setting up an info booth. I was also working as a counselor for summer camps. That particular summer I put 14,000 miles on a rental car in two months. The longest stretch I drove was from South Dakota to North Carolina. I remember being so tired and I couldn't stop because I had to be at the next camp. I must have tried every energy drink out there. The Green Monster, Redbull, Rockstar, Amped, Donkey Kick, you name it, if it had caffeine in it, it was my friend. Energy drinks have been the fad for the past couple of years. Their main purpose is to energize or "empower" the person drinking it; to give you a boost and make you alert. There have been some complaints lately that energy drinks give you a boost for an hour or so then leave you feeling worse than before. In an effort to fix this problem one company came out with an energy shot called "Five-hour energy." This nasty little swig tastes like sweat, but wakes you up and keeps you alert without the crash later.
Just as our bodies get tired physically and we become unfocused and perhaps even sick, our spiritual bodies also can weaken. What is the energy drink for our souls to boost our alertness and give us that extra 'oomph' that won't leave us crashing hours later? That spiritual energy drink is the Holy Spirit. Jesus said in John 16:5 that he would be going back to the one who sent him, but promised us he would send "the Spirit of truth" to guide us in all truth. He said the Spirit would tell us what he has heard, that he would tell us about the future, and be a messenger of what God has to say to us. The Holy Spirit was given to us by the Father (John 14:16), by Christ (Isaiah 61:3), through Christ's intercession (John 14:16).
I remember seeing a Redbull energy drink commercial where a frog wanted to be turned into a prince. As the fairy tail goes, the princess is supposed to kiss the frog and that would magically turn the frog into a handsome prince. However in this commercial when the princess gets ready to kiss the frog the frog asks for a Redbull energy drink instead. The Redbull slogan is "Redbull gives you wings!" Once the princess gives the Redbull to the frog he turns into a prince and grows a set of wings. He starts to fly off and the princess says "wait where are you going?" and the prince says "I want to check out the other princesses, you know, keep my options open!" It's pretty funny. Well, to make a weird analogy, the Holy Spirit is here to give us wings! No, not so we can keep our options open or fly away from Christ, but just the opposite--so we can fly towards Christ. Wings help us get to our destination a whole lot faster than walking plus the wings give us power!
Jesus says in Acts 1:8 that, "when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, you will receive power and will tell people about me everywhere-in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth." The Holy Spirit is our wings! He's there to give us power, to be that boost to help us over that hump, and give us boldness to share our faith. He's the gas for the Harley! I don't care how nice the bike is in the showroom, without gas in it, its not going anywhere! The Holy Spirit helps us overcome obstacles in our way. If I brought you to a huge tree in the woods and I gave you a chainsaw and an axe and said you could cut it down with either, but you could only use one, most of us would all choose the chainsaw because it would do the same job of the axe but in half the time! Can we get through life and its many challenges and difficulties without the Holy Spirit's infilling? Truth is, yes, but it's gonna be a lot harder and take a lot longer than if we would use his power! The believers (the disciples of Jesus) were "filled" with the Holy Spirt on the day of Pentecost seven weeks after Jesus' resurrection. It says in Acts 2:1-4 that "on the day of Pentecost the believers were meeting together in one place. Suddenly there was a sound from heaven like the roaring of a mighty windstorm in the skies above them, and it filled the house where they were meeting. Then what looked liked flames or tongues of fire appeared and settled on each of them. And everyone present was filled with the Holy Spirit and began speaking in other languages, as the Holy Spirit gave them this ability."
I remember a time a man in church was causing a major disruption during worship. He was jumping around, yelling loudly, and dancing up to other people pushing them demanding that they do what he was doing. He went up to the Pastor and nudged him saying he too would jump around if he was as free as he was. The Pastor simply put his arm around his neck whispered something and moments later the man stormed angrily out. Being curious and wanting to learn from the experience, I asked my pastor later what he said to make the man so mad. He answered, "All I told him was that the purpose of worship was to bring glory and attention to God and not ourselves and he was bringing attention to himself; I told him that he would need to leave if he continued." The man left in anger and never learned what the pastor and more importantly what God desired to teach him. Too many people think it's about themselves when it's not. The Holy Spirit's purpose is to empower us so we can give God glory, not bring glory to ourselves. I love the verse in John 3:30 "He must become greater and greater and I must become less and less." When we are empowered by the Holy Spirit, the purpose is to make Jesus greater, and to make ourselves less. By us becoming less we are not focused on the "gifts" of the Spirt so much as we are wanting to please the Spirit and make Jesus happy.