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Living Filled with the Holy Spirit

Demos for Devotions

Of all of the commandments in the New Testament, the commandment to be filled with the Holy Spirit certainly ranks near the top of the list as a matter of importance (Eph. 5:18). As fallen creatures, we are void of spiritual life and fullness. The quest for fullness–happiness and significance–drives almost all of our decisions in life. Every temptation appeals to the lack of spiritual fullness with false promises of satisfying fullness. The answer to overcoming temptation and fruitful living is experiencing the fullness of God by being filled with the Holy Spirit. After giving this introduction to your family, read the following Scriptures together.

 

Scriptures

Ephesians 1:22-23

And He put all things in subjection under His feet, and gave Him as head over all things to the church, which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all.

 

Colossians 1:19

For it was the Father’s good pleasure for all the fullness to dwell in Him,

Ephesians 5:18

And do not get drunk with wine, for that is dissipation, but be filled with the Spirit,

Ephesians 3:16-19

that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; and that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God.

 

Materials Needed for Demonstration

•       2 clear glasses

•       1 pitcher of water

•       2 styrofoam cups

•       Pocket knife

•       1 cookie sheet with 1/2” sides

•       1 bath towel

 

Lesson 1:  God’s fullness by nature must overflow

   When is a cup full of water? When it is overflowing. Place one glass in the center of the cookie sheet which is centered on the bath towel. Begin filling the glass with water from the pitcher asking the family to tell you when it is full. Pause during the process and ask, “Is it full yet?” Once the water begins to overflow the glass, you know it is full.

    God is like the pitcher of water. His fullness cannot be contained within Himself. It must overflow and in some sense, everything we see in creation is part of the overflow of His divine attributes and nature (Read Rom. 1:20). He is an eternal fountain filling everything else (Eph. 1:22-23). It has pleased God, the Father, that if there is to be any fullness at any time, anywhere, it will only be found in His Son, Jesus Christ (Col. 1:19).

 

Lesson 2:  Fullness begins filling from the lowest place

     Any liquid by nature will find the lowest place and fill it because fullness seeks out the lowest place to begin the process of filling. Although this demonstration is so simple and obvious, it’s worth showing so your family can see lesson 2. Place an empty glass on the cookie sheet and fill the glass to overflowing. Ask your family where the filling of the glass begins. Of course, the answer is at the bottom of the glass–the lowest place and then it moves upward. No glass starts to fill at the top or highest place.

     Because this is true, there is a valuable lesson to be learned, namely, that if you want to be filled with the fullness of God, you must find the low place and stay there so God’s grace will fill you. The low place is the place of surrender, the place of humility. You must have the same attitude Jesus did, who emptied Himself (Phil. 2:5-7). Understanding that Jesus put His Father’s will first, before His own, helps us understand what we are to do: put Jesus Christ first, before ourselves.

     In any situation or relationship in life, if you want to experience God’s fullness, with humility of mind you must regard others as more important than yourself. Put yourself in the lowest place and put God’s will and other’s interests above your own and you are in the place to be filled by the Holy Spirit. When we surrender ourselves in all things, we are able to be filled to capacity and His presence and power will overflow throughout our lives. We find that we have everything we need for any situation or relationship in life when we surrender our own plans, expectations, and feelings of entitlement to Him.

    A.B. Simpson, when describing His experience with Christ as he sought God’s fullness, wrote, “At last He said to me–Oh, so tenderly–‘My child, just take me, and let Me be in you the constant supply of all this, Myself.’ And when at last I got my eyes off my sanctification, and my experience of it, and just placed them on the Christ in me, I found instead of an experience, the Christ larger than the moment’s need, the Christ that had all that I should ever need who was given to me at once, and forever!” (From A Disciple’s Notebook by Jerry White. Jr. pg. 156). I hope you can see that when he took his eyes off of himself, his experience, his own desires, and exchanged them for the life of Jesus, Himself, he found God’s fullness.

    Help your children understand what it means to intentionally go to the lowest place so God can fill them. Usually it is helpful if you share what this looks like in your life–in your relationship with your spouse or with the children. You might discuss situations where they can think of others first or surrender their desires, timing, or expectations.

 

Lesson 3: It is impossible to be filled when there is an unsurrendered place.

    Take the styrofoam cup and punch a hole in it about halfway up the cup (be sure to turn the knife to make the hole substantial as opposed to a slice in the cup). Put the cup in the center of the cookie sheet and begin slowly pouring water into the cup. Ask your family, “Will this cup ever be filled to overflowing?” Of course the answer is, “No. Because there’s a hole in the cup.”

    The hole represents any area of our lives that is not surrendered to Jesus. Fullness can only occur in a vessel that has integrity or wholeness. If you hold on to your own desires, expectations, and self-importance, you cannot experience the fullness offered in Christ. It is impossible to be filled with the Holy Spirit while holding on to your own ways, putting yourself in first place, and thinking highly of yourself. When you are filled with yourself and unwilling to surrender to God’s will that all the fullness is in Jesus Christ, it is like thinking that a glass begins filling from the top and progresses downward or that a cup with a hole in it can be filled to overflowing. Such thinking and living is contrary to nature, reason, and reality.

 

Lesson 4:  When we are filled, the Holy Spirit becomes one spirit with our spirit

    God sends His Spirit (the Holy Spirit) to fill us as He unites with our spirit. The Apostle Paul wrote, “But the one who joins himself to the Lord is one spirit with Him” (1 Corinthians 6:17) like two glasses of water poured together into the same container become one. You can demonstrate this truth by pouring water from the two clear glasses into a styrofoam cup (without a hole :-). When you are filled with the Holy Spirit, you will experience the fullness of God. That’s why Paul prayed as he did for the Ephesians in 3:16-19 then commanded that they be filled with the Holy Spirit in 5:18. When we are united with the fullness of God, we become filled with His presence, love, and power. What an exciting way to live! We have everything we need in life as we abide in Him and live with Him.

    I’m sure there are more things to be seen through these demonstrations, so I encourage you to pray about them, visualize them, and ask the Holy Spirit to give you spiritual understanding and insight into the knowledge of His will (Col. 1:9-11) so you can walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, pleasing Him in everything you do. Please take a few moments and share any comments, lessons learned, or what your family experienced as you did this devotion on the Spirit of Elijah Ministries Facebook page here or on my Facebook page here, or on our website here. Thank you so much!

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