15 [Jesus said,] “If you love me, you will keep my commandments. 16 I will ask the Father, and he will send another Companion, who will be with you forever. 17 This Companion is the Spirit of Truth, whom the world can’t receive because it neither sees him nor recognizes him. You know him, because he lives with you and will be with you.
25 “I have spoken these things to you while I am with you. 26 The Companion, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everything and will remind you of everything I told you.
Different bibles will translate verse 26 differently – some say the Holy Spirit is our “Companion,” while others say a “Comforter,” “Helper,” or “Advocate.” We can use a variety of language, but it all points to the same idea: the Holy Spirit is God’s ongoing presence with us to lead, guide, encourage, comfort and assist us in everything we need to face day by day.
People sometimes will talk about listening to their own inner voice. We use that phrase to talk about knowledge that we have about the world, about people, about situations that is instinctive – more felt than known.
I believe this too can be a way of thinking about God’s presence with us. We are often quick to dismiss “gut reactions” and intuitions as unreliable. But how many times have you just “had a feeling” that later turned out to be right on target?
The Spirit is not just God’s ongoing presence WITH us, but also the revealer of God’s wisdom IN us. Today, maybe don’t be so quick to dismiss this dimension of God’s work.
By Joe Monahan
For Pondering & Prayer
Prayer: Lord, in the guidance of the Spirit, you have taught the hearts of your people. Today, help us to trust the little “nudges,” the reactions we feel in our chest and in the pit of our stomach, and in general, our own assessments of the world around us. We know it’s easy to doubt what we are seeing. It’s easy to doubt what we believe. Help us to trust more fully in that part of us where your Spirit is speaking. Amen.