“. . . And do not take Your Holy Spirit from me.” Psalm 51:11b
These are some of the words that David wrote in Psalm 51 when he was pouring out his heart to God after being confronted by his sin with Bathsheba and killing her husband, Uriah. At this time in his life, David was well established in his kingdom; his family was taken care of, his military conquests had given him big respect among the surrounding nations and his life was generally smooth. Maybe because there was an absence of crisis or because he wasn’t at war, maybe that’s how he was distracted with Bathsheba’s beauty and his subsequent downward-spiral choices.
No matter his decisions or circumstances, his words about Holy Spirit being taken from him are very arresting to me. This is all the more striking because I’ve been reading about Holy Spirit coming strongly on Saul, the king who preceded David. There are three specific instances the Bible highlights for Holy Spirit powerfully coming on Saul at the beginning of his kingship. As he became more settled and established in his leadership of Israel, it seems to me that he stepped away from God a little bit at a time, until we read in 1 Samuel 16:14 that Holy Spirit left Saul and an evil spirit came to terrorize Saul.
Shortly after this verse, David comes on the scene with Saul to play his harp and soothe Saul’s soul from the evil spirit. Maybe David saw in real time what Saul’s life looked like from the absence of Holy Spirit and the presence of the demonic spirit. Perhaps this might have been on David’s mind when he wrote the words in Psalm 51:11.
I’m bringing this importance of Holy Spirit to your attention because I’m fundamentally convinced that we really need Holy Spirit in our lives. We need Holy Spirit more than just a seasonal hint, platonic acknowledgment, extension cord for power or a passing religious salute.
Jesus tells us that it’s extremely important for us to have Holy Spirit. Consider John 16:7 where Jesus says, “But I tell you the truth, it is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I go, I will send Him to you.” Let’s also remember that Jesus tells us that Holy Spirit is with us all the time from John 14:16. So based on what Jesus taught His disciples in John 14-16, it would be to our great advantage to cultivate a relationship with Holy Spirit, beyond just religious information or ill-perceived application.
While you might agree that we should cultivate a relationship with Holy Spirit, it’s tricky for us to do regular relationships with humans we can see, hear, touch and smell. How on earth can we develop a relationship with someone who is invisible, inaudible and intangible!?!??
To this end, I’ve written some things that could be really helpful for you in the journey. For starters, my newest book, just released this week, is called “Your Friendship with Holy Spirit: An Interactive Guide to Growing Your Relationship with God.” This is a really practical hands-on guide to helping you connect with Holy Spirit in your unique relational tendencies. Additionally, I’ve written Heavenly Help, which gives some practical applications for Jesus’ introduction to Holy Spirit in John 14-16.
Let’s keep growing in our walk with God by cultivating a deeper relationship with Holy Spirit!