You are never alone. You are not powerless in your current situation. You are not the Lone Ranger trying with all your might to follow Christ.

Brave heart, there is not enough determination and willpower inside of you to overcome your sin and fulfill your calling without the empowerment of the Holy Spirit.

God’s Direction to the Israelites

God told the Israelites that he was going to take them to places they had never seen before when they crossed into the Promised Land (Joshua 3:4).

What new roads is the God asking you to travel?

Whom is God asking you to love that you cannot love on your own?

What sin pattern do you feel is impossible to break?

More love (Romans 5:5), more power (Ephesians 1:18–20), and more freedom (2 Corinthians 3:17) is available through surrender.

The Israelites passed through God-parted waters twice. They crossed the Red Sea and left a life of slavery. They crossed the Jordan, left the wilderness, and entered into the Promised Land. Salvation is just the first step.

When we surrender moment by moment, we open the door for Jesus to fill us with the Holy Spirit and step into the living waters of God’s love and power as we live set apart for his glory.

The Importance of Consecreation

Before the Israelites crossed the Jordan, Joshua told them to consecrate themselves because God was going to do amazing things among them.

Consecration means “to be set apart for the Lord.” God gives us the Holy Spirit to make us holy, to empower us for service, and to help us point others to Christ. Our new covenant position promises the power and presence of God’s Spirit to equip us for service and to transform us to be more like Christ (Ezekiel 36:26).

God also commanded the priests to carry the Ark of the Covenant ahead of the Israelites. The Ark represents God’s presence (2 Samuel 6:2).  Acts 7:44–51 describes the progression of the Ark of the Covenant from the old to the new covenant.

In the Garden of Eden, God began dwelling with man. After the fall, man built altars. Then, God instructed Moses to build the tabernacle complete with the Ark of the Covenant where he dwelt. Next, Solomon built a stationary temple in Jerusalem. One day, Emmanuel, God with Us—Jesus  Christ—came to dwell among us. After his death and resurrection, our bodies became the temple and his Spirit dwelt within us. Finally, in the New Jerusalem, the dwelling of God will be with men, and he will live with them (Revelation 21:3).

The Holy Spirit Dwells Inside Believers

Today, our bodies are the temple, and the Holy Spirit dwells inside of every believer. Jesus breathed on the disciples and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit” (John 20:22).

If you are a Christian, you have received the Holy Spirit. However, it is one thing to have something and quite another to use it.

We have a heating system installed in our home, but in order for heat to fill my house the thermostat has to be turned on…

The phrase “filled with the Spirit” has blessed many and yet caused division within the church. The Holy Spirit moves God’s children in different ways, and I do not believe it is right to demand that our way is “right” any more than the Jewish believers demanding circumcision for the Gentiles was right (Acts 10). Nor should the controversy keep us quiet about the Holy Spirit. In the book of Acts, the phrase “filled with the Spirit” is a biblical term used repeatedly in conjunction with believers doing amazing acts of service for God’s glory (Acts 4:8; 4:31; 6:3,5; 7:55; 9:17; 13:9; 13:52).

God asked the priests to stand in the middle of the Jordan River. God asked his only Son to stand in the gap for you and me; in turn, Jesus became the mediator of the new covenant (Hebrews 9:15).

Trust in God and Surrender

You may have rivers at flood stage raging all around you, but Jesus Christ is standing in the gap of the Jordan waiting for you to cross over into a deeper life with him.

The striving is over.

Your position has been secured through the blood of Christ. It is your responsibility and your great privilege to believe it and walk as an ambassador on earth for Christ—not by your might but by his Spirit as you surrender one step at a time.

If we are honest with ourselves we will eventually come to a place where we realize we cannot serve God in our own strength.

When I am still at the helm, white knuckled on the steering wheel of life, I am fighting against the winds of the Holy Spirit that long to push my sails to adventure beyond what this world could ever offer.

If you lose your life, you’ll find it. God’s strength is limitless. The Lord commanded the Israelites three times to keep the Ark of the Covenant ahead of the them while they crossed over the Jordan River (Joshua 3:3, 3:6, 3:11). What you focus on, you will follow. Trusting in His goodness at all times opens your heart wide to catch the winds of the Holy Spirit.

If you want to soar. . . surrender.

Nourish Scripture: Joshua 3-5:12

Blog written by Aliene Thompson. Aliene Thompson is the founder of Treasured Ministries and the Author of the Nourish Bible Study Series. © 2019 Treasured Ministries.