From the writings of the Rev. Billy Graham
The Bible’s clear that when a person accepts Jesus Christ as Savior that His Spirit takes up residence in us. “After you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation… having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit” (Ephesians 1:13). Jesus said, “The Helper, the Holy Spirit … will teach you all things” (John 14:26). If we feed our spiritual lives and allow the Spirit of God to empower us, He will have rule over us. If we starve our spiritual natures and instead feed the old, sinful nature, the flesh will dominate. Only in the power of the Spirit can we live a life that glorifies God. We cannot glorify God in the energy of the flesh.
God’s Spirit supplies His power for a purpose. Although His limitless resources are available to us, He will permit us to have only as much power as He knows we’ll use or need. Unfortunately, many Christians are disobedient and, having prayed for power, have no intention of using it, or else neglect to follow through in active obedience. It’s a waste of time for Christians to look for power we don’t intend to use: for might in prayer, unless we pray; for strength to testify, without witnessing; for power unto holiness, without desiring to live a holy life; for grace to suffer, unless we take up the cross; for power in service, unless we serve.
The Holy Spirit gives liberty to the Christian, direction to the worker, discernment to the teacher, power to the Word, and fruit to faithful service. He reveals the things of Christ.
(This column is based on the words and writings of the late Rev. Billy Graham.)