You may have heard Christians talking about the Holy Spirit. Many followers of Christ say things like “The Spirit led me to do this or that” or “The Holy Spirit moved in the church service.” For those who do not follow Christ this may be puzzling and a bit weird. It may seem like Christians are out to lunch. What exactly are Christians talking about when it comes to the Holy Spirit? How do we define the Holy Spirit?
We should start off with what the Holy Spirit is not. Ironically the Holy Spirit is not a “what” but a “who”. The Holy Spirit is not a ghost like Casper or Beetlejuice. Although the Holy Spirit is similar to the force in Star Wars, he is not that and yet so much more than that. The Holy Spirit is the living presence of God. The Bible says that God is Spirit. (John 4:24) Spirit is something that is invisible and yet at the same time present. In a way, this helps us understand something about the Holy Spirit because the nature of God is almost undefinable. That is why throughout the Bible, the Holy Spirit is described through metaphors like breath, wind, fire, and even a dove.
All of these things say something about the Holy Spirit but they only scratch the surface. There are a couple of things we do know about the Holy Spirit. He is a comforter and a guide. In the absence of the physical presence of Jesus, the Holy Spirit reminds followers of Christ of God’s love and guides his followers into all truth. He is as the Giver of Life. (John 6:63) Wherever there is creativity and life, the Holy Spirit is there even beyond the four walls of the church. When we are able to sense the good in this world it is because of the Holy Spirit. The next time you stand in awe of a powerful sunset or a jaw dropping mountain range, it is God as the Holy Spirit reminding you of his love and care for you and all of creation. –Ramon Mayo