The Holy Spirit in the Old Testament
by Fr. Peter deSousa
Creation (Genesis 1:2)
Are we facing emptiness and darkness in our personal, couple and family life? Let us allow the Spirit of God to recreate us anew. He will open our eyes to see each other through the eyes of Jesus, as new creations. Let go of our prejudices and labels and see ourselves and each other as precious and beloved children of Abba. He will show us how to love, respect and bring out what God wants in each other, through our love, which is really His love at work in and through us. Offer him then your hands to caress, to embrace, to heal, to touch with gentleness and kindness. Offer him your voice to speak words of life that will build up each person with encouragement, love, forgiveness and trust. Ask him to help you to be open with each other, so that the partner he gave you as your life-companion may minister to you, as God wills and plans.
Vision of the dry bones (Ezekial 37:1-14)
100,000 skeletons were found in a mass grave in Mongolia. All the skulls had a bullet hole in them. "Can these bones live again? Yahweh says: I am going to put my spirit in you and make you live." "I shall bring you out of your tombs, my people and lead you back to the land of Israel." Are we among the living dead right now? Do we wish that he will bring us back to life in Christ? Do we need to make a good confession, humbly to repent and acknowledge our need of God and each other? Let go of our married singleness and self sufficiency. Be bride and bridegroom again and let him change your water into wine. He wants you to be Lovers, so that you may be a sacramental sign of a God who is LOVE. Give your relationship as husband and wife priority because that is his call, plan and mission for you.
The river of living water that flows out of the temple becomes life-giving in a variety of ways (Ezekial 47: 6-12)
Our lives can be unproductive and unfruitful if they are not nourished by living waters too. Are the fruit of the Spirit (Gal 5:22f) evident in our lives as opposed to the work of the flesh (vv19-21) Which fruit are present right now in my life? Do I want to continue this way? Turn to the Lord through each other to be saved. He did not call you to be consecrated single like a Priest or Religious Sister, but as a married couple. Is your union joyful, loving, fruitful and life-giving to each other and to your children? If he gifted you with children, then do not neglect your call as Parents to love and be role models to your children, not as individuals but as a couple. What is the atmosphere in your home? Do people come there to experience love, kindness, compassion, and understanding. Do they meet Jesus in your little Church?
By his power God stilled the sea. By his wisdom he smote Rahab. By his wind, the skies became clear. (Job 26:12-13)
Power, wisdom and wind are all references to the power of the Holy Spirit. Today too, we have a choice to either call upon his help or rely on ourselves? Like Job, we may face many trials and difficulties, temptations and hurts. But do we believe in His love and presence through it all?
The fire of Yahweh fell and consumed the burnt offering, together with the wood, the stones also and the dust, the water also dried up in the trench (1 Kings 18:38)
The false prophets were also killed. Are we threatened by the prophets of false gods today and their loud clamor and false promises? Do we ask the Spirit to accept the humble offering of our weak and broken selves, made in faith? Do we have the firm assurance that he will never forsake us and will vindicate us?
Yahweh speaks to Elijah, not in the earthquake or fire, but in the murmur of a gentle breeze (1 Kings 19 :12)
We need to be internally quiet to hear the murmur of the gentle breeze. How often does our anxiety, shame, guilt, anger or fear cloud our judgment and prevent us from listening to his comforting and encouraging voice? "Be still and know that I am God" There is a great need today for contemplative prayer. We have to quiet ourselves down to hear the gentle murmur of the breeze. How do we make time for this in our busy schedule?
Where else could I go from your Spirit? Where could I flee from your presence? (Psalm 139:7-10)
Am I running away from the Spirit or shutting out his voice? Do I want him to find me? He wants to find us when we hide like Adam and Eve from God because we are ashamed. He wants to walk again with us in the cool of the evening. He wants to be part of our life and love and family. But we have to invite him: "Come, Holy Spirit, we need you. Come, sweet Spirit we pray. Come in your strength and your power. Come in your own gentle way. Come as the wisdom to children. Come as new sight to the blind. Come, Lord as strength in our weakness. Heal us, soul, body and mind"
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