The Second Blessing

The Spirit told me to go with them without misgivings.
–Acts 11:12

A number of years ago, I decided to go home for lunch one day. I had never gone home for lunch, but that day I felt an urge to do so. In fact, when I opened the front door, my wife, Amy, just about jumped out of her skin. “What are you doing here? Are you sick? Did you get fired?”

I said, “No, I just had an urge to come home for lunch, if that’s okay.” Our daughter Dorothy, a preschooler at that time, was at the table eating her lunch. I went to make myself a sandwich, and Amy went to the back room where she was working on a project. Suddenly Dorothy began to choke. She was grabbing her throat, turning red and then purple. I did not have a clue how to perform the Heimlich maneuver, so I started pounding on her back as hard as I could until a piece of ravioli rocketed from her mouth across the room.

Dorothy had never choked like that before, and I had not been home for lunch before. But I just happened to be at home that day. Was that a coincidence, or was it something more?

Have you ever had an experience like that? You felt a prompting to do something, and only later did you discover the reason. Or maybe you received some devastating news, yet you had this inner peace. Or you were in a conversation with somebody who needed a word from God. You felt a sudden surge of courage, and you were able to boldly say exactly what they needed to hear.

Inner promptings in our spirit, inexplicable peace when the world is collapsing around us, unusual courage to speak God’s truth–these phenomena are all evidence of the supernatural work of the Holy Spirit in our lives. Yet I would say the majority of Christians do not experience the power of the Holy Spirit on a consistent basis. Most Christians have at least one addiction or habit they cannot break. They have trouble controlling their thoughts or actions. They find it difficult to think about God consistently during the week. They allow external circumstances to quench the joy they have in Christ.

That is the norm for most believers. But there is a small group of Christians who live in a different way. It is not that they do not have struggles, but somehow they are able to live above those struggles. What is it that separates those Christians from other believers? They have experienced something beyond the baptism with the Holy Spirit that every believer receives. They have received what some people call the “second blessing”: the filling of the Holy Spirit.

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Today’s devotion is excerpted from “The Second Blessing” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2011.

Scripture quotations taken from the (NASB®) New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1971, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. All rights reserved. www.lockman.org.

 

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