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There is a huge interest in spirituality today, but what exactly has the believer in Jesus been called to? What does it truly mean to be rightly related to the Spirit of God in a world that often confuses spirituality and religion? In this six-day track Ben Stuart walks us through what it means to be spiritual and how you can know if your life is being guided by the very Spirit of Almighty God. Let’s get started.

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11.13.2023

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There is a huge interest in spirituality today, but what exactly has the believer in Jesus been called to? What does it truly mean to be rightly related to the Spirit of God in a world that often confuses spirituality and religion? In this six-day track Ben Stuart walks us through what it means to be spiritual and how you can know if your life is being guided by the very Spirit of Almighty God. Let’s get started.

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Day 02

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How Does True Spirituality Begin?

Day 03

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How to Walk with the Spirit of God

Day 04

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How to be Sure You're Following the Spirit of God

Day 05

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Experiencing the Empowering of God

It’s day one, and today, we are learning to position ourselves to receive the power of God. Everyone wants to be connected to a power greater than themselves that can lead them to heights that they are unable to reach on their own.

But what does it mean to be spiritual?

The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.
2 Corinthians 13:14

To be spiritual means to be rightly related to the spirit of God. The spirit of God is the intimate presence of God. He breathes into us the breath of life. God wants to be as close to you and me as the breath in our lungs.

“The spirit of God is the intimate, animating presence of God in human life.”

Our challenge for you today is to talk to God honestly about your desire to be spiritual. Have an open conversation with Him about it.

Video

Summary

There is a huge interest in spirituality today, but what exactly has the believer in Jesus been called to? What does it truly mean to be rightly related to the Spirit of God in a world that often confuses spirituality and religion? Let’s review the scriptures Ben Stuart led us through:

2 Corinthians 13:14- Paul encourages us to be able to commune with the Spirit of God.
Ephesians 5:15-18- We are to walk in wisdom and be filled with the Spirit.

But what is the story of the Holy Spirit?

Genesis 1:2- the Spirit hovered over the waters. He was present. All at once, God is separate from His creation, yet He’s intimately connected to it. He takes chaos and creates order.
Genesis 2:7- God breathed into us life. The Hebrew word “ruach” used here is the same for “Spirit, breath, wind. It represents life.

The Spirit of God is God’s intimate, animating presence in human life. He wants to be as close to us as our breath and breathe His life into us.

What's next?

Talk to God honestly about your desire to be spiritual. Start with a simple prayer, "God I want to be spiritual, to walk with you every day. Please, teach me through your Word and this track how I can do so."

Today is day two of How to Be Spiritual. Last time, we talked about how God wants us to have communion with the spirit of God. Ben Stuart now shares how we need to be born again in order to be spiritual.

And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules.
Ezekiel 36:26-27

Putting your faith in Jesus is not about God forgiving your sins but putting sin out of the way in order for the intimate, animating spirit of God to return.

How does true spirituality begin? By putting your faith in God’s son, Jesus. That’s your challenge here. Have you put your faith in Jesus?

Video

Summary

The Spirit is God’s intimate, animating presence that brings us into communion with Him.

Genesis 3 outlines our first break with God that came in the Garden. Adam and Eve believed the lie that in order to enjoy life truly they would have to break with the Author of life. The whole world became corrupted, and God told Adam that he would return to dust.

Remember in Genesis 2, we learned that we were dust, but God breathed life into us. The tragedy of Genesis 3 is that we are still dust, but the wind is gone. You see through the rest of the Old Testament that even though God gave laws to live by but the people could not do it. External laws cannot fix internal problems. God starts to whisper hope through His prophets, like Isaiah, promising a coming Savior. In Ezekiel 37, God tells Ezekiel to prophesy, and the Breath of God brought an army of dead bones back to life. Ezekiel 36 says God puts His Spirit in us and it brings us to life.

In the New Testament, John the Baptist says in Luke 1:36 that one who will baptize us with the Spirit is coming. When he baptizes Jesus, John knows that the Savior has come. Later, Nicodemus asks how to be born again, and Jesus answers him by saying he must be born of the Spirit. See John 3:5-8.

The same is true for us. The Spirit needs to come into us and make us alive again.

Jesus says He must leave so that the Helper can come. See John 16:7. The isolation we’ve experienced since the Garden; Jesus experienced on the Cross when He took on our sin. After He paid the debt for what separated us from God, the first thing He did was to breathe on the disciples to receive the Holy Spirit. (John 20:22)

Being saved isn’t just about having your sins forgiven…it is also so sin can be moved out of the way so His intimate animating Spirit of God can return.

When was the Church born? When the Spirit came, see Acts 2:2.

How do we get the Spirit? By putting our faith in Jesus. How does true spirituality begin? By putting your faith in the Son and being marked with the seal of the Spirit.

What's next?

Do you know Jesus? Have you trusted His finished work on the Cross that saved you and made a way for His Spirit to be in you? Maybe today has been a wake up call that you have been living without the Holy Spirit living within you. If so, you can invite Him in right now. Maybe today was a reminder of a helper who you have been ignoring for too long. Either way, be honest with God today.

Welcome to day three of How to Be Spiritual. Today, we’re diving into the question: how do we know we’re in step with the Spirit of God?

But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons. And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!” So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God.
Galatians 4:4-7

First, He is consistent with the scriptures. We need to be in tune with the Word of God for our thoughts to be aligned with His thoughts. Second, we understand that God is contrary to the world and flesh. Suddenly, we don’t like the sin that our savior bled out for. We begin to grieve what grieves God.

We challenge you to ask the Lord to show you what it looks like to have a deep desire for His Word and walk contrary to what the flesh desires.

Video

Summary

We have been adopted as sons and daughters. Because of what Jesus did, we have been pulled from slavery in sin to sonship, clothed in His righteousness. We conduct all our business in His Name as sons and heirs.

Often, we know we have a new identity, but we still feel broken. God didn’t just change our position, He changed our constitution. He didn’t just change us in His Son, He put His Son in us that cries out “Abba, Father.”

Luke 4:1-13, Matthew 4:1-11, and Mark 1:12-13 all record how after Jesus was baptized, The Spirit led him into the wilderness, and He returned in the power of the Spirit. He was directed and empowered by the Spirit. To be truly spiritual people, the Spirit of God will direct and empower us.

What does it look like to be directed by the Spirit?

  1. He is consistent with the Scriptures. (see John 14:15-17). He is the Spirit of Truth and will teach us all things. (see John 14:26). Read the Bible until your thoughts match the flow of it. 2 Peter 1:21 says that the Spirit of God inspired the words of the men who wrote the Bible. This is the Holy Spirit’s breath on a page, and He loves to speak through it.
  2. He is contrary to our flesh. (see Galatians 5:16-17). Paul also told the Colossians that part of our broken estate is that we’ve lost sensitivity to God and have been given over to our own sensuality, a numbing of the conscience. How do we know we are operating in the Spirit? We move from numbness and sensuality to the Spirit of God. Suddenly, you don’t like the sin that your Savior bled out for. It grieves the Spirit of God in me. He doesn’t like it, so I don’t like it.

You cannot walk in sin anymore; the Spirit of God has ruined that for you. He has changed you from the inside out, and you won’t know peace unless you walk with the Spirit of God.

What's next?

Ask the Lord what it would look like for you to be a person who is deeply woven into His word and walk away with increasing sensitivity to the holiness of God inside of you.

Day four, and we’re taught that when we put our faith in Jesus, God sends us a new resident in us, Jesus.

How do we know He is leading you?

1. He is consistent with scripture.

2. He is contrary to the flesh. He begins to uproot ways of thinking and living that no longer fit in the child of God’s life. He then plants new ways of living and thinking into your life.

Therefore put away all filthiness and rampant wickedness and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls.
James 1:21

Today, Ben Stuart shows us two other ways we can know we are being directed by the Spirit.

He is community-centered.

He is also Christ-exalting.

This week, we challenge you to ask the Lord for specific life changes you can make to follow the spirit and deepen your unity with the saints.

Video

Summary

We learned last session that you could know the Spirit of God is in you because He begins to uproot ways of thinking and living that don’t fit in a child of God’s life anymore. And He plants new ways of thinking and living in your life, He doesn’t just leave a void.

The Spirit pulls up what we do that’s contrary to Him and plants what is consistent with the Word. He gives us a desire to know Him through the Scripture.

Here are more ways to know the Spirit of God is in you.

The Spirit is community-centered. Therefore, so are we. Ephesians 2:18 talks about how we are in one Spirit before the Father. We’ve been knit together for His glory. He loves the community of the saints.

When people often say they are spiritual but not religious, they are trying to say that they want a dimension of spirituality in their life. They don’t want to be tied down to the obligation of serving a community. It’s the outworking of rampant individualism into a spiritual world.

In Ephesians, Paul goes on to say that when someone has the Spirit of God in them, they are diligent to preserve the unity of peace. It takes patience and tolerance to love a real human being in front of you. Paul says to the Corinthians that God poured out different gifts on each of us for the common good. Again, He loves the community.

You are Christ exalting. Beware of a spirituality that focuses so much on the Spirit. The Holy Spirit likes to put a spotlight on Jesus and bring all He’s done into focus. How do you know the Spirit is directing you? You want to make much of Jesus.

What's next?

What does it look like for you to diligently preserve the unity of the Spirit? To be woven into a community where you can exalt the Son of God together?

On day five of How to Be Spiritual, Ben Stuart asks a pivotal question: how do we know we’re empowered by the spirit of God, and what does that look like?

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.
Galatians 5:22-23

You can’t just try to produce that fruit; you must rely on the Spirit to produce what you cannot. True spirituality is the recognition of dependence on God that can bear much fruit.

Try praying everywhere you go, asking the Lord to help and provide for you through your days to give you the fruit needed for every situation.

Video

Summary

The Spirit is an intimate animating presence of God available to us. How can we position ourselves to experience the empowering of the Spirit of God? We have learned in the last two sessions how we can raise our sails, but how can we be empowered by Him?

Philippians 2:12-13 says work out your salvation with fear and trembling. In other words, let what’s happened in you work outside of you. God is at work in you both to will and to act according to His will. Our will is the inclination to do what is right, and He gives us the ability to do so as well.

Paul gives the Galatians the fruit of the Spirit. We can’t produce those things on our own. We have to go to the source, the Holy Spirit.

True spirituality is the recognition of dependence.

Be honest with God, but ask God to give you what you need. If you don’t want to be around certain people because of how they treat you, ask God to give you His love for them. As you walk in dependence, He’ll produce what you can’t on your own.

What's next?

Try a breath prayer everywhere you go. "Lord, give me peace." as you walk into a meeting. "Lord, give me patience." when you are about to lose it. "Lord, give me gentleness." when you want to lash back out to someone who has hurt you.

It’s the final day of the How to Be Spiritual Track.

Spirituality is total and constant dependence, understanding the reality of the grace and kindness of God daily. Realizing that we’re all debtors.

If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit.
Galatians 5:25

Each step through the day, we need the spirit to empower us to do what we cannot do on our own. Try to position your life to be consistent with the scriptures, contrary to the flesh, driven by the community, and exalting Christ; you will always need to be empowered by Him to do so.

Our encouragement to you is not to get discouraged when you get depleted. Cling to the God of grace, walk daily with Him, and watch what He can do with a humble and submitted life.

Summary

Robert Robinson penned the hymn, Come Thou Fount. Tragically, he gave himself over to his desires later in life and became a miserable man. He didn’t learn to depend on God.

Being spiritual means total dependence on God. Understanding the reality that we are debtors to the grace and kindness of God daily. We need Him to bind our hearts to Himself.

Galatians 5:25 says let us keep in step with the Spirit. Moment by moment. Every day, we need the Spirit to empower us to do what we cannot do on our own.

That’s the secret. You may have optimism and good technique, but you will still arrive at moments when your internal resources are insufficient.

We can position our lives to be consistent with Scripture, contrary to the flesh, driven by community, and exalting of Christ. We can do all these things and still need to be empowered.

What's next?

Don't get discouraged when you get depleted. We are all daily debtors to God's grace that he gives as a lifeline. True spirituality is constant dependence. Grip on to Him, and step by step, He'll take you to places you'd never be able to get to on your own. Watch what He will do through His power in a humble, submitted life.

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Scripture References

  • 2 Corinthians 13:14
  • Ephesians 5:15-18
  • Genesis 1:2
  • Genesis 2:7
  • Ezekial 36:26-27
  • John 3:5-8
  • John 20:22
  • Acts 2:2
  • Galatians 4:4-7
  • Luke 4:1-13
  • Matthew 4:1-11
  • Mark 1:12-13
  • James 1:21
  • Ephesians 4:1
  • John 16:14
  • Galatians 5:22-23
  • Philippians 2:12-13
Ben Stuart Ben Stuart is the pastor of Passion City Church D.C. Prior to joining Passion City Church, Ben served as the executive director of Breakaway Ministries on the campus of Texas A&M. He also earned a master’s degree in historical theology from Dallas Theological Seminary. He and his wife, Donna, live to inspire and equip people to walk with God for a lifetime.

Day 02

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What Does This Mean?

Day 03

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What Do We Do?

Day 02

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Back to Him

Day 03

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A Gift on the Table

Day 04

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Eternal Implications

Day 05

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What's In Store for a Believer in Heaven?

Day 02

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Gospel Aimed Surrender

Day 03

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You Are The Instrument