11 Jun How Do I Know I’ve Got The Holy Spirit?
If I were to pray to receive Christ into my life, how would I know that I’ve truly received this “Holy Spirit” that Christians speak of?
That is an excellent question and not the easiest one to answer.
The Holy Spirit is mysterious. Even Jesus said that the wind blows wherever it pleases, you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going—so it is with the Spirit (John 3:8).
There are Christians who have received a powerful, overwhelming experience of conversion. They had an indescribable, palpable encounter with God, much like Moses with the burning bush. The vast majority, however, would say that they felt a sense of peace at first, but their love for Christ grew over time, much like a married couple who pledges their love for one another on their wedding day, but decades later would confess that they hardly knew one another.
The most obvious signs that a person has received the Holy Spirit are:
- A hunger for personal holiness
- A peace and joy that pervades all of life
When I say a hunger for holiness occurs, what I mean is: they want their life to resemble the life of Christ in every imaginable way. When Ezekiel said that God will give us a new heart that wants to obey, he meant that a child of God naturally wants to please the Father and to make Him proud (Ezekiel 36:26).
This does not mean, of course, that all temptation and former sins suddenly vanish. The process begins and one issue at a time, the Lord begins to work on us. Jesus said, “If you love me, then you will obey my commands,” and that issue of obedience to Christ now becomes the real scorecard of one’s life (John 14:15).
There is a hunger for personal holiness, but also, there is a joy that is now felt even in the midst of trials and struggles. Many people think that becoming a Christian will remove their problems, but sometimes it actually compounds their stress, because they now feel led to make decisions contrary to what their peers desire.
It can be a lonely time, but that loneliness only drives us closer to Christ, and nearer to His presence.
There are moments in the Bible when people are saved and they receive supernatural signs, and there are moments when people simply confess Christ and move forward in baptism. The reason baptism is so helpful is that it solidifies a person’s decision and helps them remember the moment of calling, moving full steam ahead on God’s good plan for their life. (Learn more about how we do baptism at Storyline.)
So if you desire a relationship with Christ, then do what David did in Psalm 51. Follow his example. Confess your sins before God, ask for mercy, and above all—ask for a new and clean heart.