May 29, 2023
Our Personal Trainer
But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you (John 14:26 NIV).
Friend to Friend
One Christmas, my husband, James, had an unusual gift request. He asked if I would work out with him every day for one month.
Hmm…in one way this was an easy present. No need to spend any money or stand in line to buy that perfect gift. In another way, this was a hard gift. Exercise every day for a whole month???
I was struggling with back pain and foot pain, and James saw this as an opportunity to fix all that was ailing me. It’s kind of hard to say no at Christmastime so I accepted this holiday challenge.
James kept a notebook with our exercises listed. The first days were tough. “Can’t you do more?” he would say. “Is that all you’ve got?” This was clearly going to be a marriage test! I thought 45 minutes of this exertion would be enough, but we went for one hour on most days. James bought ankle weights–not just tiny ones, huge ones that had different compartments so you could change how much weight was on each foot.
After several days, James announced he was enlisting the help of a real personal trainer named Hans and that Hans would be showing up in a few minutes. Yikes, we were having company? I started straightening up the house. The doorbell rang and I heard my son greet Hans. Imagine my surprise when Hans was not Hans. He was my husband James wearing a t-shirt with COACH written across it. He was wearing a goofy-looking plastic mask and speaking with an accent. “Hello I am Hans and I am here to pump you up!”
Things are never boring at my house!
During that month of exercise, James (also known as Hans) kept me on track, introduced me to new methods, worked alongside me, and got me to do much more than I would have ever done alone. It kind of reminded me of the Holy Spirit (but don’t tell my husband that).
Today’s truth describes the important role of the Holy Spirit in the believer’s life. “The Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.” You could picture the Holy Spirit today as your coach, teaching you what to do and what not to do, reminding you of the truths found in the Bible.
During my training month, I wasn’t left alone with an exercise notebook. James (Hans the personal trainer) directed me every step of the way. You have someone alongside you today and He is even better. The Holy Spirit is with you right now. He is good. Nehemiah 9:20 says, “You gave your good Spirit to instruct them. You did not withhold your manna from their mouths, and you gave them water for their thirst” (NIV). The Levites were reminding the children of Israel that during those forty years in the wilderness, God provided every single thing they needed. Even their shoes didn’t wear out.
Ask the Holy Spirit to train you up as a godly person, to mature you in your character, and to enlarge your capabilities. Consider the words of Apostle John in 1 John 2:28, “And now, dear children, continue in him, so that when he appears we may be confident and unashamed before him at his coming” (NIV).
You can work out your spiritual muscles—adding goodness to your faith, and to goodness, knowledge, and to knowledge, self-control (2 Peter 1:5-6, NIV). The Holy Spirit will help you. Remember those ankle weights I said James bought for me? He eventually put 20 pounds on one leg and told me to do leg lifts. I thought he was being ridiculous, but I was able to do more than I thought. Sometimes we need to push ourselves past our comfort zones to build muscles—both physically and spiritually. You might be thankful that Hans won’t be stopping at your house today, and you can be even more thankful that the Holy Spirit is there instead.
Dear God, I welcome the work of the Holy Spirit in my life. Guide me, search me, and teach me Your ways. Show me specific ways to strengthen my character today. I love You Holy Spirit. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Now It’s Your Turn
Think of a spiritual goal for this week. Here are a few ideas:
● Read one chapter of the Bible each day.
● Respond patiently to others (no yelling).
● Fast one meal and pray about something you are concerned about instead.
What is your goal? Ask the Holy Spirit to help you accomplish this.
More from the Girlfriends
Did you know Arlene has a weekly podcast to equip moms and wives? It’s called the Happy Home and is always packed with things to learn from guest experts, practical applications, and a few laughs. You can listen to the Happy Home podcast wherever you get your podcasts and always at AccessMore.
© 2023 by Arlene Pellicane. All rights reserved.
Originally published Monday, 29 May 2023.