Monday, February 17, 2020, 08:30 am | No Comments »


One of the things that life offers us is the gift of friendships. We all have those people who are close as good friends. We like, love, trust, and are loyal to them. We’re happy to spend our time with them.

However, no human being on earth can understand us the way the Holy Spirit of God does. He is that type of friend that that sticks closer than a brother as written in Proverbs 18:24,

 

‘A man who has friends must himself be friendly, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.’

 

He knows, sees, and understands every part of us, and He gets it. He offers friendship to every believer.

The Holy Spirit’s desire is the same as our Saviour’s when He said,

 

No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you (John 15:15)

 

Seeing that God through the Holy Spirit offers His friendship to us, it should be our goal to befriend Him.

 

But, how can we grow in friendship with the Holy Spirit?

 

How to Become Friends with the Holy Spirit

Here are 3 keys that can help you become friends with the Holy Spirit.

 

1. Spend time with Holy Spirit

Friendship with the Holy Spirit starts like any other true friendship. We spend time with our friends and so the way you will get to be friends with the Holy Spirit is by spending quality time with Him.

The Father has sent the Holy Spirit to “abide” with us. Among other things, that means spending time with us.

 

And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever—  the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you. (John 14:16-17)

 

Since He dwells with us, we can talk to the Holy Spirit the way we would talk to a friend. We can ask His opinion about things.  Talk to Him when things are good and when they are not. The more we spend time together with the Holy Spirit, the more we grow close to Him.

 

2. Become Dependent on Him

Every believer is called to walk in the Spirit and keep in step with Him. If we are to become friends with the Holy Spirit in a fruitful way, we must learn to walk in Him and become completely dependent upon Him every moment.

We don’t know what to do; He does. As our helper, we can depend on the Holy Spirit. We need His power and wisdom. He’s our supernatural help to be and to do what God has called us to be and do. This is possible only if we completely depend on Him.

 

3. Reverence Him

Psalm 25:14 says, “The friendship of the Lord is for those who fear Him, and He makes known to them his covenant.” 

 

Friendship with the Holy Spirit comes about by fearing Him, following his leadership, making time to ask Him how He feels about things, and following his guidance completely as He instructs us through the Word of God.

 

Ephesians 4:30 says, “And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption” 

That means we must also respect, love, and make time for the Holy Spirit. We must learn what He loves and doesn’t love. When we do something that hurts or offends Him, we must ask for forgiveness from Him. The Holy Spirit has feelings like any other friend we have. But, He is also full of grace, forgiveness, and matchless love.

 

Is the Holy Spirit your Friend?

The Holy Spirit is waiting to be your friend right now. When we seek to know the Holy Spirit as our friend, He will lead and guide us.

He longs to walk with us in a meaningful relationship with Him. By inviting the Holy Spirit into an everyday friendly relationship Him, He’ll transform us, convict us, our life, our relationships and our choices into becoming more like Jesus. 

 

Contact Westside through our website contact form or Facebook page. Come and visit our Sunday service to learn more about becoming friends with the Holy Spirit. 


Monday, February 10, 2020, 12:54 pm | No Comments »

Do you know the Holy Spirit? The Holy Spirit is the most misunderstood person of the Holy Trinity.  As a result, there are many misconceptions about Holy Spirit. Some people think he is a force or energy, and others understand the Holy Spirit as the power of God.

As believers, it’s important to go back to our life manual, the Bible, and ask ourselves –What does the Bible say about the Holy Spirit?

This article covers three important truths about the Holy Spirit according to the Bible.

 

1. The Holy Spirit is God

The Holy Spirit is God and not simply a powerful force as some may teach.  Along with God the Father, and God the Son (Jesus), the Holy Spirit is the third person of the Trinity and is integral to all of the things that God does in the Bible.

In Genesis 1: 2, the Holy Spirit is described as a person who has been present with the Father and the Son before the beginning of time.

The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.

 

The case of Ananias and Sapphira in the book of Acts better portrays the truth that the Holy Spirit is God.  

But Peter said, “Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and keep back part of the price of the land for yourself? While it remained, was it not your own? And after it was sold, was it not in your own control? Why have you conceived this thing in your heart? You have not lied to men but to God.”

 

2. The Holy Spirit is a Divine Person, Has a Mind, Will and Emotions

The Bible also depicts the Holy Spirit as a person or individual. The following verses show clearly that the Holy Spirit is a person - just as God the Father, and God the Son.

  • In Ephesians 4:30, He can be grieved.
  • 1 Corinthians 12:4-7, He has a will.
  • 1 Corinthians 2:10, He searches the deep things of God.
  • 2 Corinthians 13:14, He has fellowship with believers.

 

3. He is Our Helper, Teacher, and Friend

Listen to what John 14:26 says,

But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you.

The Holy Spirit is our Helper and Comforter. We can do nothing without his help and guidance.

Notice also that the verse says the Holy Spirit “teaches us all things.

When we need it He reminds us of everything that Jesus has already spoken to us about. If you really study and meditate the word of God consistently, you will see this come alive in you…The Holy Spirit will always remind you of God’s Word in different situations in life.

He is also our friend. This is one of the most humbling characteristics of the Holy Spirit – we can relate to Him as we relate with our friends.

In John 15:15, Jesus says

No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you.

Through the Holy Spirit, God’s friendship is available to us. The Spirit of God desires to do life with each of us as four friend, comforter, and guide – so we can have a fulfilling relationship with God.

 

Contact Westside through our website contact form or Facebook page. Come and visit our Sunday service to learn more receiving a fresh revelation of God’s desire for the Holy Spirit.

Don’t miss our next blog post, ‘How to Make the Holy Spirit Our Closest Friend 


Monday, February 3, 2020, 07:29 pm | No Comments »

 

In an increasingly busy world, it’s easy to find ourselves with so much to do. So much so that sometimes it becomes a constant tussle to keep our eyes fixed on Jesus. The end result is that we may slowly start drifting away from God.

Not that all these things are “bad”, most aren’t, they only become an issue when we allow them to divert our attention from God. The scary part is that sometimes we may not even realize that some of the things we engage in are a distraction.

However, if we become aware of them, we can then begin to take the necessary actions to deal with them.

Here’s a list of 3 things than can easily distract us from God.

 

1. Media

Media. You must have thought about this one. Media is probably one of the biggest distractions for anyone right now. Think of all the avenues that media has into your life - TV stations, the Internet, movies, music, games, magazines, social platforms, newspapers…

Media is so distracting because at every turn, we come face to face with it at home, at work, in the streets, on our phones, etc. 

To overcome the media distraction, we need to be wise and purposeful in what we read, watch, listen to and how much time we are using doing that. If something needs to be given up, we should be willing and disciplined to let go. Also, we need to be able to exercise self-control and not to over indulge in the things we decide to engage in.

Whoever has no rule over his own spirit is like a city broken down, without walls. (Proverbs 25:28)

 

2. Our Work

In life, work is important.  God himself says we are to work. The problem comes in when we end up so engaged in work that it becomes more important than our focus on Jesus.

Now it happened as they went that He entered a certain village; and a certain woman named Martha welcomed Him into her house.  And she had a sister called Mary, who also sat at Jesus’ feet and heard His word. But Martha was distracted with much serving, and she approached Him and said, “Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Therefore tell her to help me.”

And Jesus answered and said to her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.”(Luke 10:38-42)

 

So, they key thing is to try and avoid getting caught up on our duties and forgetting God. Our work itself should be done entirely for His glory. We should learn and train ourselves to listen to God and be alert to His daily leading as we work.

 

3. Relationships

Our relationships can be yet another major distraction in our faith walk. Any kind of relationship with parents, friends, children, siblings, spouses, bosses, neighbors, girl/boyfriends…

Anytime we allow any one of them to become more important than God, we are already distracted. It’s true that relationships are very important, but of more importance is our relationship with God and it should be the top priority.

Remember, we are to ‘seek first the kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to us’ (Matthew 6:33)

 

Contact Westside through our website contact form or Facebook page. Come and visit our Sunday service to learn more about living in faith in 2020.


Saturday, January 25, 2020, 07:48 pm | No Comments »

 

In our last article, we introduced How to Live by Faith series.

We covered three important factors, and as promised, we’ll discuss a few more key points in this article.

If you have not yet read part 1, go here.

 

A Brief Review

We saw that living by faith is important and is a command by God for believers. The aim of this article is to answer ‘how.’

Let’s get started on the remaining points.

 

1. Obey God in the Small Things 

Before God entrusts you with a big assignment, he’ll assign you small things to do. Remember how Abraham was told to shift from his hometown without knowing where he was to go?

 

By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to the place which he would receive as an inheritance. And he went out, not knowing where he was going (Hebrews 11:8)

 

We have to learn to obey God in small things or we could miss the will of God in a new season.

 

2. Talk Right

In part 1 of the series, we discussed the fact that it’s important to think right but it doesn’t end there. It’s also crucial to talk right. Why? There is power of life and death in the tongue.

 

Matthew 12:34 says, … out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. Speech that lacks faith comes from a heart that is lacking in faith.

 

In Gen 1:1-9, we read that God spoke the universe into being. And, we are made in His image and likeness.

 

In the New Testament, Jesus spoke to the fig tree. This shows us that there is power in the spoken word.

 

What we think, we say. Living by faith therefore means speaking in faith from a heart of faith – speaking the words of God

 

Proverbs 18:21 says, Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit.

 

Our words do carry power.  Notice what Jesus said.

 

"Have faith in God. For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, 'Be removed and be cast into the sea,' and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says. Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them (Mark 11:22-24)

 

3. Apply the Word

Applying the word of God can be a challenge. Gratefully, the Word of God itself provides us with an understanding on how to best apply God’s Word to our daily life.

 

Here’s a summary on how to do it

 

  • Apply the Word by Abiding in Jesus

We can do nothing without Jesus, and scripture confirms it.

 

I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing (John 15:5)

 

  • Apply the Word through Prayer

We need to be closely connected with Jesus and to be filled with the Holy Spirit to be able to apply the Word of God effectively in our lives. Prayer is the primary means we have to intimately connect with Jesus. If we lack something, we can directly ask God for it.

 

If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind (James 1:5-6)

 

  • Apply the Word by Reading, Memorizing, and Meditating on the Scriptures

We can’t obey a command that we don’t know or claim a promise that we have not discovered. That said, the obvious thing is to read God’s Word if we are going to obey it. Not only that, we also need to study, memorize and meditate on Scriptures.

 

This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success. (Joshua 1:8)

 

Contact Westside through our website contact form or Facebook page. Come and visit our Sunday service to learn more about living in faith in 2020.


Sunday, January 19, 2020, 12:08 pm | No Comments »

One of the key principles that we have discussed in our last two posts to help us claim the promises of God in 2020 is making a resolve to live by faith. But what does it mean to live by faith? And, would you classify yourself as one who lives by faith?

Living by faith is a question that every believer needs to be able to answer because God has instructed us to live by faith. Faith is so important that without it there’s no pleasing God.

But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him (Hebrews 11:6, NJKV).

Also, God says “The just shall live by faith”, four times, in four different books of the Bible, in both the Old and New Testament (Romans 1:17, Habakkuk 2:4, Hebrews 10:38 and Galatians 3:11)

That says something, right? It is clear that God wants to make sure we get it.

So, if living by faith is so important, how do we do it?  

1. We Should Live by the Word of God

Sometimes we see things about God based on our circumstances and experiences instead of what the Bible really says. But Scripture encourages us to “walk by faith, not by sight (2 Corinthians 5:7, NKJV)

The children of Israel had to walk around Jericho 7 times by faith, not by logic or reasoning. They had to live by the Word from God, not their perception of how unreasonable the command of God might have seemed. So living by faith means living by the Word and obeying it no matter how illogical obedience might seem to us.

2. Count Things as Though they Have Already Happened

God’s word tells us that living by faith is living as if things have already worked out.

(As it is written, “I have made you a father of many nations”) in the presence of Him whom he believed—God, who gives life to the dead and calls those things which do not exist as though they did; (Romans 4:17, NKJV)

We are to believe in the promises of God in the Spirit, expecting God to bring them to pass in the physical realm.

3. Think Right 

Negative thinking will always produce negative outcomes. Now and again we suffer from negative thinking because we mix God’s words with the world's value system.

Thoughts are vital. What we think we do, and then we become.

“For as he thinks in his heart, so is he” (Proverbs 23:7, NKJV).

What have you been thinking? It’s important to watch your thoughts as they have the power to sway you toward a direction you shouldn’t go (If they are wrong thoughts).

Think on things that lead you to the action or behavior you want to achieve.

Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things (Philippians 4:8, NKJV).

Look for Part Two of How to Live by Faith Next Week!

Contact Westside through our website contact form or Facebook page. Come and visit our Sunday service to learn more about living in faith in 2020.


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