Is the Holy Spirit a bully?
I am a missionary and I hate going up and talking to strangers. Does anyone see an irony there?
One of the callings that I know is on my life is to share with others about Jesus. To let people know that there is a Beautiful One who invites them to have relationship with Him and saves them out of all the nastiness of life without Him.
If others initiate conversation, if there is even just a glimmer of relationship, I am able to chat freely and openly with them. But if some one is going about their business, I do not want to interrupt. Anyone else here an introvert with similar feelings?!
There has been a voice in my head recently that has been saying this:
‘You have to go and talk to people about Jesus. If you don’t then they might die and never hear about Him. You have to go and tell others about Him otherwise you are not a friend of Jesus. People will be lost to eternity.’
And my heart says, ‘Yes, I know, and I want to’ and ‘No way, no way, no way!’ at the same time, and then anxiety creeps up all over my body and I start panicking.
‘Jesus,’ I cried out. ‘I want to tell others about You! I need your help! I can’t do this!’ I was beginning to shut my mind down to hearing anything from Him, just in case He brought the subject up again.
The situation was getting silly. I didn’t want to go out unless I saw someone I felt I should go and make conversation with! I knew that I needed His help and that this anxiety was not His plan so I finally asked Him about it.
‘Anna,’ His voice replied. ‘Of course I want you to share my love with others and to obey my voice, but you realize that that voice you have been listening to isn’t mine?!’
What? Why would a voice telling me to go and talk to strangers about Jesus not be from Him?!
‘Anna’ He called softly and kindly. ‘Anna, my voice is kind. My voice is empowering. My voice is patient and full of love and full of joy. Are you experiencing any of those things from the voice you are hearing?’
Actually, now you put it that way…! Of course that wasn’t His voice!
‘Anna, that other voice was a bully - that other voice was exerting pressure, fear, manipulation and was definitely not empowering you. Don’t listen to that voice. It is not me.’
I drew close to Jesus again. I couldn’t trust that bully voice, but it hadn’t come from Him! The Holy Spirit is NOT a bully! His voice was gentle, empowering and kind. A voice I recognized and that felt like home! Jesus is so kind!
‘Anna, I know you struggle talking to strangers. And I know you don’t want that to be the case. I will help you. It is a process. Let’s take it step by step. Together. Okay?’
I’m still processing those fears I have. I don’t want there to be anything I would not do for Jesus. I’m not there yet. Pray for me, will you?
But I am also so grateful that as I have invited Him into this desire to be able to go and talk to strangers, He is kind and patient and will led me through the process. A process that starts with me discerning that kind voice of His Spirit and choosing to trust Him.
Lord, may we hear your voice clearly - that kind, beautiful, empowering voice in our hearts. Would you help us to obey in faith, trusting that where we are weak, You will fill all the gaps. Amen.
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