The Holy Spirit Cleans House
How can I know all the sins lurking in my heart? Cleanse me from these hidden faults. Psalm 19:12 NLT
God never gives up on us. Sometimes we leave Jesus knocking at the door of our hearts for years. Sometimes we open the door right away.
Once he comes in, some open their home (their whole life) to him. Others allow Jesus into only certain rooms as though he were a visitor. Sometimes this goes on for years. What people don’t realize (or refuse to face) is the fact that Jesus already knows what goes on in those other rooms.
The Holy Spirit doesn’t wait for permission to look in the closets and he knows what’s under the bed because he had to clear a spot to store his suitcases. You see, he came to stay. He doesn’t live out of a trunk.
The Holy Spirit has many ministries. Some he performs through you, using the gifts he bestows. Some he performs on you. The major ongoing work of the Holy Spirit on you is housecleaning. He goes from room to room pointing out the trash that we’ve all horded. He drags out the treasures buried under all that junk and polishes them up so that he can use them.
We are glad when he has been piling up the junk. We are excited and relieved as we open the doors and push it out. It’s not easy work but the results are worth it – room to move unhindered and fresh air to breath. Our relationship with the Holy Spirit is wonderful. We are grateful and humble and glad that the garbage pile is slowly being shovelled out.
One day, the Holy Spirit opens the basement door. In the back of our minds, we know this day would come. There are several ways we can react.
We can slam the door and shout, “No! Now you’ve gone too far! All that stuff in the basement is mine and I’m not getting rid of any of it.”
We can tell the Holy Spirit to wait at the top. We go down, wade through the garbage and choose one or two items we can “live without” to take up to him. He’ll let it go for now but he’ll come back to that basement door again.
We can wait at the top while the Holy Spirit descends. We trust his judgment. He knows what is trash and what isn’t.
We follow him down and wade in with him, watching as he sorts our “stuff” and helping carry it out.
The third and fourth response are both acceptable. Sometimes it depends on our temperament and sometimes it depends on our emotional state. One thing to keep in mind: the basement is very large and we have been pack rats for years.
We can’t handle cleaning the entire basement in one session. The Holy Spirit knows this. He is gentle and wise. We must trust him as he sorts through our stuff. Never question what he assigns to the trash heap. Give it up, acknowledge it as garbage, throw it out and move on.