When I was a kid growing up Christmas was special for many reasons. One of those was the train sets dad set up underneath the tree. He used to be a railroad yard clerk until he was laid off, but his love affair for
trains model railroading didn’t end with that. Eventually the trains wore out, we grew up, and he moved out, so the trains stayed in several boxes. In the 70s I also became interested in HO trains. I used to lay awake sometimes at night working over plans to make my train platform mobile since it was a foregone conclusion that most pastors will move. I bought some trains and dad gave me his old equipment- trains, track, buildings, transformers, the works. I was never able to make my night dreams a reality (this mind may have ideas but these hands have trouble translating those same ideas into reality). Yeah, I am “tool-ologically” challenged. Fast forward several years when I met a young man who was interested in model railroading. With permission I loaned him my train “stuff” but when his interest waned, I was never able to recoup what I had loaned. Not all of it anyway. Fast forward even more years and the interest is piqued again, but sadly much of what I have is too old. The trains have fallen apart (pot ash was never intended to last a long time). The track needs a good cleaning. And the power source: well, let’s just say it has gone the way of the dodo bird. Oh, that’s not to say I don’t still have them. They are called transformers. In its heyday, it powered trains. But it did not have the power to light the house. It was not designed to do so.
Every follower of Jesus has a transformer within them. The transformer is called the Holy Spirit. Talk about giving someone the shakes!! I confess I used to be petrified by any talk or suggestion of the Holy Spirit. My first experience in worship when someone raised their hands was horrifying. I broke out in a cold sweat. Honest!! I wondered when tongues and pew-jumping would be next. I had come from a tradition in which we just did not talk about the Holy Spirit. Off limits. And to raise hands? Jesus come quickly because all you-now-what is about to break out.
I HAD NOTHING TO BE AFRAID OF. What I did need to do was learn more, and I did. And while I still have my beliefs about doctrine and practices, I am no longer afraid of the Holy Spirit. I hope to convey some of that information Sunday in my sermon called “Wired.” I’d appreciate your prayers for me and the church. Thanks.
Did you ever “fear” the Holy Spirit and what might happen? Have your thoughts changed?