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Words of Life

Who’s Doing the Work?

By Jeannie Cunnion May 16, 2021 Words of Life

I recently ran into a friend I hadn’t seen in a few weeks. I know she’s been going through a tumultuous time, so after some brief small talk I said, “Friend, can I ask, how’s your heart?”

That’s when her guard came down and she shared all the ways it feels like her life is crumbling around her. But then she concluded, with a positivity I could tell she didn’t believe when she said, “But I’m working on myself!”

As I listened to her share what’s been going on, I sensed the Holy Spirit nudging me to tell her what He’s been teaching me about needing His help, but out of fear of sounding judgmental, I settled for saying something like, “There is so much I admire about you. I know this has been so hard on you. I think it’s incredible that you’ve found the strength to work on yourself!”

“Jeannie,” she prodded with a smile, “I know you too well. I can tell there is something else you want to say. Please say it.”

“Okay,” I said, hesitantly. “What if the Holy Spirit wants to work in you while you work on you? What if you let Him do that? You don’t have to do the hard work of healing without His help.”

I assured my friend I understand the struggle to rely on the Spirit, because I am prone to settling for only what I can do. I work on being a more patient mom, I work on being a more loving and supportive wife, I work on being more self-controlled with the things I enjoy, I work on being more grateful for what I’ve been given, I work on being more joyful in trying circumstances . . . and the list goes on. But I do it without inviting the Holy Spirit to work in me.

But as intentional as we may be to create Internal change in our lives, we can’t do it without the transforming power of God.

As human beings, we have limitations. We may not like it and we may fight it, but no matter how hard we try and no matter the lengths to which we’re willing to go, we are limited in what we can accomplish and make happen. Our humanity gets in the way.

This is why Paul prays that we would “understand the incredible greatness of God’s power for us who believe him. This is the same mighty power that raised Christ from the dead and seated him in the place of honor at God’s right hand in the heavenly realms” (Ephesians I:I9-20 NLT).

God is not bound by human limitations. He is all-powerful and unstoppable. And His plan has always been for His children to live in the supernatural power of His unlimited, indwelling Spirit.


Jeannie Cunnion shares her journey to walk with the Holy Spirit this Monday on LIFE TODAY. This is an excerpt from Don’t Miss Out by Jeannine Cunnion. Copyright ©2021 by Jeannie Cunnion. Published by Bethany House Publishers, a division of Baker Publishing Group. Used by permission.

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