Originally published Tuesday, 23 May 2017.
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Week Five Study Overview: Today, we will discuss crisis and speak of how the fire in our bones can become a full-on blazing inferno.
Key Point of Struggle: Crisis! Why must we deal with it, and what do we do when it begins to shake our entire foundation, threatening to extinguish the fire in our bones?
Key Proof of Comfort: We are going to learn a powerful Holy Spirit declaration through John 16:13-15.
To recap, the last time we were with Jeremiah, he wanted to walk away from his calling but quickly recognized he couldn’t. He invited us into a small piece of his world when he revealed this:
Then I said, “I will not make mention of Him, nor speak anymore in His name.” But His word was in my heart like a burning fire shut up in my bones; I was weary of holding it back, and I could not.
Jeremiah dealt with crisis in the form of people beating him, chaining him, and making a mockery of his ministry. It was entirely possible that the crisis of dealing with flesh and blood, people who did not want to hear his words from the Lord, would also lead to a faith crisis. Jeremiah thought about walking away, but he couldn’t ignore the burning in his bones.
Have you ever felt like walking away?
I’ve been down roads paved thick with grief. I’ve stood all by myself with God and shaken my fists at an invisible figure. I’ve felt alone with a God who said He’s with me to deliver me but haven’t felt any deliverance whatsoever. And then after making peace with knowing that if I have no God then I have no life, I have once again felt the deep burning inside my bones. It’s how I know He’s there even when I can’t find resolve. I stand on promises and know that inside my bones there’s a kindling which cannot be contained. We live in a world full of sin. Crisis will come, but Jesus had a plan.
In John chapter 16, John shares with us the words our Savior spoke to His disciples. Jesus told them the Holy Spirit would come to be their Helper. I picture, in that moment, Jesus looking into the eyes of a bunch of wide-eyed men who grew more and more confused with every word He spoke. They hung onto each sentence for dear life but could not figure out what any of it meant. And then crisis came. Their Beloved was captured and crucified. For three days the tomb was not empty, and the disciples were faced with a faith crisis. They had lived in a whirlwind of miracles and love so powerful it could restart hearts. It was a love that didn’t just feed mouths, but souls. They hadn’t known anything like it before and after experiencing it, knew they couldn’t live without it ever again. In my mind, I imagine John, who deemed himself the disciple Jesus loved, tearing through his memories working to solve an unsolvable mystery. I envision John remembering these particular words that Jesus spoke:
“However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come. He will glorify Me, for He will take of what is Mine and declare it to you. All things that the Father has are Mine. Therefore I said that He will take of Mine and declare it to you.”
When it was all said and done and death hadn’t beaten them, after they saw with their own eyes an empty tomb and a resurrected Messiah caught up in the sky, they waited. They sat together in an upper room when the Helper showed up and filled up. The breath of God came in the form of wind that would fill every heart with His Holy Spirit Helper – the Helper of all who believes. And to this day, it’s that same Wind that keeps the fire in our bones burning bright.
“For He will take of what is Mine and declare it to you.” Those words from Jesus speak to me mightily. I’ll tell you why:
Let’s talk for a brief moment about the word crisis. It comes from the Greek word Krisis, which means turning point from a disease. And that word Krisis comes from the word krinein which means to decide.
When we find ourselves in the middle of a diseased situation, it forces us to make some decisions. Crisis backs us into a corner and asks us what we’re going to do. And Jesus said, “He will take of what is Mine and declare it to you.”
Do you know what I need to hear in the midst of chaotic crisis? I need to hear the Holy Spirit’s declaration that I belong to Christ, that my identity is in Him and not in the situation that caused my crisis.
I am not grief!
I am not unforgiveness!
I am not a victim!
I am victorious in Christ, because I am the daughter of the living God!
Deep down in my heart of hearts, I know that when Jeremiah contemplated giving up his ministry, he heard the first words spoken to him by God. I believe they played on repeat and reignited the holy burn in his bones.
“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; before you were born I sanctified you; I ordained you a prophet to the nations.”
Friend, if you’re in the middle of crisis, I want you to know that Jesus sent the Holy Spirit to live inside you and be your Helper. He wants to remind you that you were created intentionally for purpose, and that you’ve been set apart for a life only you can live. You are meant to bring Him glory. Your identity is found in Christ! You are His; the Holy Spirit wants to declare that to you. And you need to declare it out loud!
- Who are you to God? Search scripture and write about it in your journal.
- Psalm 143 is a beautiful psalm of David as he seeks wisdom and guidance in the middle of crisis. For deeper study, I encourage you to read the entire psalm, write 143:10 in your journal, and pray it over yourself every day this week.
Next week, we will be studying the widely known scripture in Jeremiah 29:11 as we close out our series on the faithful prophet Jeremiah.
When you learn to search the word, the word will come alive to you like never before. The fire in your bones will become an inferno. Don’t underestimate who God made you to become!
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