Written by cycleguy on February 7th, 2013



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?


25 Comments so far ↓

  1. Daniel says:

    Prayers out and up for you and your group.

    I am not yet an expert on the Holy Spirit. Truth be told, I am not really sure who I should be praying to. Sometimes my pastor mentions God in his prayers. Sometimes Jesus. The trinity notion is odd to be sure. I just tend to pray to my heavenly father and hope that the prayers that I send up get to where they need to go.

    • cycleguy says:

      I’m not an expert either Daniel. Still lots to learn. I tend to pray to the Father since Jesus did. The Trinity is odd in the sense we certainly wrap our finite minds around it. I am positive your prayers are taken to the Throne.

  2. Susan says:

    I had a set of Lionel trains that my grandfather gave me on my first Christmas. I was all of ten months old at the time, and he had been hoping for a grandson. 😀

    I was well into adulthood before I ever saw anyone raise their hands in worship or witnessed speaking in tongues. It kind of freaked me out at the time. Now one of my dearest friends is Pentecostal. We don’t necessarily agree on everything except for loving Jesus and loving each other.

    The churches in which I grew up seldom talked about the Holy Spirit and the various ministries of the H.S. Since then, I’ve often thought that they didn’t talk about Him because they were afraid he might do something.

    Praying right now for your sermon on Sunday. God bless.

    • cycleguy says:

      In some ways your experience is similar to mine Susan. One of the people who helped me back in the 80s when I went through burnout was a Charismatic. My first exposure to him was at a basketball game and he and another man prayed for healing for a guy who went down with a bad ankle. Creeped me out. 🙂 And you do have to wonder if some are afraid to talk about the HS because of fear. Thanks also for your prayers.

  3. floyd says:

    That train is on a slippery slope! I too come from a very conservative theological background, but know that God is limited by nothing in His cosmos. That said, I’ve seen many abuses of the claim of God done in the flesh. Just goes to show that all of us struggle with some weakness in our flesh.

    Praying for you and yours for the teaching of God’s word.

  4. I don’t really like labels, but I have to use them to describe this. I come from a Southern Baptist tradition. Now I would cautiously refer to myself as being a Charismatic, Calvinistic Christian Hedonist. Yes, talking about the Holy Spirit scares me, but that’s ok. I’m enjoying Him.

  5. Betty Draper says:

    Never feared the Holy Spirit but did fear what others thought about me not fearing the Holy Spirit. Through the years I have developed a respect for His work in myself and others. Anytime the focus is on a person in the name of the Holy Spirit I know that is not something from the Lord. His work always lifts up Jesus not Him. Jesus did not even lift the Holy Spirit up except to say, I have to leave so the Holy Spirit can come to help, comfort, teach, give discernment also conviction to the believer. We could not be examples of Christ without the powerful still small voice of the Holy Spirit. Whenever the gospel is given out He is there to bring conviction that we are sinners in need of a Savior. Without Him beleivers cannot walk the straight and narror Calvary road God wants us on. There are too many takes on what the scriptures say about the Holy Spirit, more then there is on Jesus Christ. Again if it lifts the HS up, somesthing is wrong. I will certainly pray for you my brother as you teach this Sunday. I believe God wants all believers to have a healthy understanding of all parts of the trinty. Without a proper foundation of of the trinty it is easy to get off into all sort of actions that never edify God. Your will be stepping into the emenies territory for he loves to keep us confused so we give out a confused gospel. Keep that armor tight brother. Good post for stirring the hearts and our beliefs.

    • cycleguy says:

      You put an interesting twist on the “fear angle” Betty. I also believe that the HS was never to draw attention to Himself. John’s gospel is pretty clear with that. His purpose is to convict but also to lift Jesus up. Thanks for a thoughtful comment.

  6. Ed says:

    Mine was plastic model airplanes. When I was young I used to lie all around to the point that no one believed me. Growing up it was a battle. Now that I am old I have learned never to fear the Holy Spirit, but let it lead you anywhere and everywhere because where the Holy Spirit goes, Truth is always to follow.

  7. Debbie says:

    I loved the train lead into this. 🙂 I came to Jesus a little later in life, and so the first church I went to was Charismatic. I didn’t know anything else, so was not afraid. Praying for you and yours . .this sermon will be great!

  8. Dan Erickson says:

    I don’t attend what you’d consider a Spirit-filled denomination. I’m more comfortable with liturgy and organized worship, but I also believe the Holy Spirit is revealed in many ways.

  9. Tammy says:

    I’ve attended several different “types” of churches in my life. The cool thing about God is the more I sought Him, the more I wanted to experience Him. I was taught once that “we fall in love with what/who we focus on.” Being part of a Pentecostal church did feel odd at first, because it was not how I had been raised. The danger is in Christians becoming divided over such issues when one group thinks another is more/less close to God because of worship styles, or thinks another group thinks they are when they don’t think that. 🙂

    • cycleguy says:

      I cannot argue with you at all. I loved my mom dearly, but we did not click when she went to a charismatic church. I thought she was wrong and she thought I wasn’t spiritual enough. I have been around enough of those who “spoke in tongues” and made me feel less than worthy to hold their shoes that I had my fill. I hope, even with unbelievers, that I have not come off as being better than others.

  10. theoldadam says:

    This sort of applies;

    My pastor said, “How can you know that Holy Spirit is at work in your life?

    You’re still breathing, aren’t you?”

  11. i must admit that I’m still figuring out exactly how the Holy Spirit works in my life. Not only the theology but also the practicality. So many men I respect have a variety of opinions.
    But I grew up much like you where we didn’t really talk about the Holy Spirit. I had heard the words but had no idea exactly what everything meant.

  12. Jan says:

    Yes and yes. The holy spirit has quelled my fear and given me a peace when I just let Him do the guiding. Great post!

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