He whom God has sent speaks the words of God; for He gives the Spirit without measure. (John 3:34)
Jesus spoke truth, so why do I experience a limited measure of the Holy Spirit? Here are some reasons which seem true in my life at different times:
- Distractions by circumstances, wrong thoughts, or attacks from the enemy. But what does that say about my priorities or perspective?
- Selfish motives. I want to be outstanding compared to others. Perhaps I seek some other reward for moving in the power of the Spirit. I might be content with the measure I have and the satisfaction that brings. On the other hand, perhaps I am unwilling to be outstanding; I want to be like my friends. If God were to pour His Spirit on me more than others then I might not fit any more. People might think that I am weird. I am not sure that it is right to stand out or to make others uncomfortable.
- I want God to bless my ambitions or imaginations; never mind His purposes.
- I control what He can do through me, so I only allow gradual portions of His power to flow. Perhaps I am afraid of the unfamiliar or uncontrollable. Maybe I feel unqualified or inexperienced and want to grow into the fullness of His power gradually.
- I mistakenly think there is some technique that I need to master before I can be more fully anointed.
I notice a tension between life as a pawn versus our true identity as a child of God. We might fear that to be used by the Holy Spirit requires us to be like lifeless pawns. But that is a lie. We are God’s children living life abundantly. See how that applies for each potential blockage:
- Pawns are powerless to overcome the enemy or their own fleshly nature. No one cares about their pain; “Just suck it up.” God’s children, on the other hand, exercise their authority to rebuke the enemy and walk in freedom. By His grace they rise above circumstances and experience God using circumstances, or changing them in His time.
- Pawns are invisible; they get no reward for their work. Children of God do not compete among themselves; they seek the Father’s glory. There is no limit on how much He can be glorified and therefore no limit on how much they can manifest His power. Children follow the leading of their Father. Doing His work matters little compared with being with Him as He works. He is the reward.
- Pawns have no ambitions or desires. God’s children allow the Father to stretch and mold their desires to align with His.
- Pawns are overwhelmed and swept away. God knows the limitations of His children. When we are humble God meets us. He chooses how much to work through us and spreads His gifts throughout His body.
- Pawns behave like robots; they try to crack hidden codes to perform better. God’s children can trust their Father and receive from Him. He wants to empower and guide them in His work.
Come Holy Spirit!