A choice of enormous significance lies before every believer in Christ. God has given each one the responsibility of deciding who will rule his life. Christians are indwelt and sealed with the Holy Spirit at the moment of salvation, but being filled with the Spirit—in other words, being controlled by Him—is optional.
From the moment we are saved, God’s Spirit will never leave us (John 14:16). But by refusing to submit to His authority over every area of our lives, we limit His work in and through us. He will not override our wills but waits for us to choose Him.
The Lord wants you to have His power to overcome sin, to become the person He designed you to be, and to accomplish the work He has called you to do. The filling of the Spirit is His provision for this kind of supernatural living. Without it, the Christian life will be full of defeat and discouragement.
God wants to motivate us to desire His fullness, and He will use various methods. Sometimes He places a longing in our hearts to be closer to Him. Other times He uses our feelings of inadequacy and failure that result from trying to live in our own strength. God even uses the example of other Spirit-filled believers to make us want what they have.
The Holy Spirit promises to fill a believer who is willing to yield all aspects of life to Him. This isn’t an instantaneous event, but a gradual peeling away of layers of self-rule. As the Lord reveals an area which you have kept under your own control, surrender it to Him, and let Him fill you with His Spirit.
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