It feels wrong to even give the title of Third Wheel but isn’t that how we treat the Holy Spirit? God and Jesus get a lot of attention and recognition but what about the Holy Spirit? Do you acknowledge his presence in your life? Did you know the Holy Spirit is also known as the Advocate? To me, that is powerful. To have an advocate on my side, to speak for me and on my behalf. We all want that don’t we?
I read through John chapter 16 and the Jesus says that he has to go so that the Holy Spirit can come. WHAT? Jesus left so that the Holy Spirit could join us. That emphasizes the Advocates importance even more. The fact that Jesus would say that means a great deal. So, how do we continue to overlook the Holy Spirit? How do we make our relationship with the spirit more intentional and real?
7 But very truly I tell you, it is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you. 8 When he comes, he will prove the world to be in the wrong about sin and righteousness and judgment:
12 “I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. 13 But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come.14 He will glorify me because it is from me that he will receive what he will make known to you. 15 All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will receive from me what he will make known to you.”John 16:7-8, 12-15
I think the first answer is easy, spirit is weird. It’s strange for us to think about a spirit and more than that, communicate with it. A spirit is like a ghost and ghosts are for Halloween. That leads us directly to the second question, how do we make a spirit something real, something worth communicating with on a daily basis?
What if it were as easy as talking to a friend? Instead of saying God or Jesus in a prayer what if you viewed a friend and called it spirit. Or maybe even treated the situation like a go between. Something like, “hey, will you ask the big guy about this thing that I’m going through?” Instead of talking directly with God, try talking directly to the spirit and asking Him to talk to God for you. I don’t know if this is sound theology but it’s definitely worth trying. I’ve been doing it for a day or two now and it changes the conversation, freshens things up a bit. And honestly, it makes it seem like I have a better chance at being heard. Bear with me for a second, I know God hears us and wants to know our hearts, but the spirit exists for a reason. God may also be talking with him and since we don’t frequently talk to and through the spirit we miss out.
Let’s try something together. Talk to the spirit this week. Make your requests, your fears, anxieties, praises, etc., known to the Advocate. Who’s to say that God won’t respond differently if we approach him differently.