Years ago we had neighbors with children about the ages of two of our middle kids. They didn’t come over to play very often, but when they did, I insisted they play outside in the back yard. One of them seemed like an angry kid.
This child used a few bad words, sometimes played rough, and found kindness difficult. The mama bear in me wanted to protect my children, to hurt anyone or anything that threatened my little cubs. Knowing the family wasn’t a believing one, and wanting to have a positive influence on them, I chose to continue to let this child come over to play periodically.
However, instead of me being the influencer, I soon realized this child was influencing me. I began to dislike our little neighbor’s presence, attitude, and actions more and more. Anger was growing in my heart.
To make it worse, I didn’t want to love this child. In my mind, behavior like this didn’t deserve to be rewarded with grace and love.
One day I realized my attitude and my lack of love was not pleasing to my God. The Holy Spirit is the one Who showed me the truth about my attitude. The Spirit, my Purifier, was inviting me to let Him make my heart more pure and clean like Jesus.
“Be holy for I am holy.”
As a member of the Trinity, part of the Holy Spirit’s job is to make me more holy. This means He is continually working to make me set apart from that which isn’t like God. Our different God-like responses to situations, like my inability to love even a child, will be a witness of God’s power to change.
The Spirit’s work is to help me see my naturally sinful responses, acknowledge them as displeasing to God, and then to transform them into pure attitudes and actions.