Hanging out where the Holy Spirit hangs out

by Gary Bowman on March 8th, 2012

Brave Peter has taken us all to school.

Sold out for Jesus. Over the top energy. Inside circle. As they are giving Jesus the third degree (and more) upstairs, there is loyal Peter in the very courtyard of the High Priest. Brave Peter. Peter the lionhearted.

And then utter, dismal, fall on your face failure. (Mark 14.66-72)

So Peter has taught us: there is no hope for us.

If Peter couldn’t stand strong, who stands a chance? But as we explored Sunday, the turning place for Peter, and for all of us is the day the Father sent His gift of the Holy Spirit to permanently dwell in every believer, just as Jesus promised (Acts 1.4-8)

From that day on, Peter and his buddies schooled us, showing us what Spirit-filled Christians look like, sound like, act like, think like, respond like: Powerful, not idling. Repentant, not stuck in remorse. Clued in to the tricks of the enemy. Joyful. Refreshed. Patient. Full of praise. Hopeful.

Hanging out where the Holy Spirit hangs helps fill us with God’s Spirit. Thinking about where He is already active and working and living and then moving ourselves into His neighborhood is the no brainer of keeping in step with the Spirit (Galatians 5.25) And deciding to move out of the places He doesn’t frequent too much.

So where do you see and experience the Holy Spirit hanging out?

Here’s two places I’ve found He frequents, and where I hear Him and want more of Him.

Silence. It’s hard to find. And it’s sometimes hard to stay there, We’re so used to voices (others and our own) and cars and iPods and TV and machines humming and whirling. When it gets really quiet, it seems like nothing is happening. Or it seems scary.

Good. For it is here the Holy Spirit is. It is here, where I don’t talk, and I’ve blocked out others and done everything I can to be in a place as quiet as possible, I’ve gone ultra off grid, that we may have radical concentration upon God, and a “turning place,” hearing from His Son who “will not quarrel or cry out; no one will hear his voice in the streets.” (Matthew 12.19)

So find and fight for places, and encourage and assist those close to you (share how God speaks to you in quietness, offer to babysit, etc.) to discover times and places of silence, where His Spirit hangs out, and speaks.

And another place, among many, where His Spirit is working: Celebration! The places when and where we gather and thank Him joyfully and loudly for our lives, when we remember and celebrate our lives and our world as God’s works, as God’s gracious gifts to us! It’s when we eat together, sing together, dance together, tell one another His stories, enjoying what He’s done in creation (maybe you need to go to the beach for a sunset or Yosemite to be reminded) and what He’s doing in our lives. God’s Spirit is hanging out here! See how Miriam (Exodus 15.20), Deborah (Judges 5), and David (2 Samuel 6.12-16) celebrated, and not quietly.

Singing, strumming the strings and beating the cymbals loudly (here’s a good place: 2 Chronicles 5.12-13), eating and drinking (how about Deuteronomy 14.22-27?), recounting God-stories (ah, please read Psalm 145!) are places where His Spirit is hanging out, where His Spirit jogs our memory of His love, power, goodness, mercy, grace and encourages us on! So raise the roof, tell and sing and write His stories. Laugh hard in praise. Don’t sit on your hands.

Here’s where His Spirit is: singing and shouting and dancing and eating to His Glory. “With your help I can advance against a troop,” we shout, “with my God I can scale a wall.” (Psalm 18.29)

Silence. And Celebration. Two places the Holy Spirit is hanging out.

Join in the dialogue and let us know where you’re discovering the Spirit to be active and present, where you hear Him best.

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