The Holy Spirit’s Role and Your Role in Progressive Transformation

We are made of stories. You are a witnessJesus take the wheel.
Take it from my hands.
‘Cause I can’t do this on my own.
I’m letting go
so give me one more chance
and save me from this road I’m on
Jesus, take the wheel

Do you remember Carrie Underwood’s hit single Jesus, Take the Wheel from 2005? Yes, almost 20 years ago. The song summarizes one of the necessary steps in life transformation, releasing control and receiving God’s forgiveness.

The effect of this transformational step varies based on circumstance but always includes joy which sometimes spills out uncontrollably. I shared my joyful release-and-receive transformation in the last post.

The psalmist describes his release-and-receive transformation:

Count yourself lucky, how happy you must be – you get a fresh start, your slate’s wiped clean. Count yourself lucky – God holds nothing against you and you’re holding nothing back from him. When I kept it all inside, my bones turned to powder, my words became day-long groans. The pressure never let up; all the juices of my life dried up. Then I let it all out; I said “I’ll make a clean breast of my failures to God.” Suddenly the pressure was gone – my guilt dissolved, my sin disappeared…
Let me give you some good advice; I’m looking you in the eye and giving it to your straight: “Don’t be ornery like a horse or mule that needs bit and bridle to stay on track.” God-defiers are always in trouble; God-affirmers find themselves loved every time they turn around.
Psalm 32:1-5,8-10 The Message

Release, receive, allow

While we continue practicing the 5 Steps toward Transformation, we allow the Holy Spirit to gradually transform us. Allow feels passive and uncomfortable. We want to do something. Remember our desire for control?

It’s our job to control our mind’s input to allow for it’s renewal. We also pray, read the Bible, and position ourselves among other believers. It’s the Holy Spirit’s job to reveal new insights and shape our heart to align with God’s desires. Our job is to:

  • pray and listen expectantly for guidance
  • approach the Bible with an open mind and ask the Holy Spirit to reveal its meaning
  • respond in obedience to the Spirit’s lead (to avoid the bit and bridle)
  • allow the Spirit to change us

Are we transformed for our own pleasure?

No, even though we’ll find more joy in answering God’s call on our lives as well as greater contentment through trials. Our purpose is always to increase God’s Kingdom by spreading the love of Jesus. Whatever the task, the Holy Spirit works in and through us.

We become a witness

But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.
Acts 1:8 NRSV

Jesus instructed the disciples to use the Holy Spirit’s dynamic power to be His witnesses to their immediate circle of influence, then to a larger circle of friends and foes, and eventually to the whole world.

The disciples enthusiastically shared their witness of Jesus’ teaching, healing, and miracles, but most importantly, His death and resurrection.

A witness tells the truth, shares their personal experience, and speaks out if their silence harms others

We are witnesses to God’s activity in our lives

What life event might have been God’s plan?
Who are the people who helped shape your faith?
How do your before Jesus and after Jesus selfies differ?
(my before-and-after revealed here)

Witnessing can be as simple as attributing an apparent coincidence as God’s activity. God-incidences are witness stories. Perhaps God provided timely funds, protected you from self-destruction, or blessed you with a long awaited child. God has been at work in your life since your birth, preparing you to accomplish His purpose.

Do you doubt people will believe it was God’s hand or label you a religious fanatic? Jesus promised to provide words and wisdom that none could contradict. (Luke 21:14-15).

The Spirit gives us the ability to carry out our God-assigned purpose, and then tell the story of His power working in you. Peter, after healing a paralytic, explained this to onlookers:

Why does this surprise you? Why do you stare at us as if by our own power or godliness we had made this man walk? The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the God of our fathers, has glorified his servant Jesus. By faith in the name of Jesus, this man whom you see and know was made strong. It is Jesus’ name and the faith that comes through him that has completely healed him, as you can all see.
 Acts 3:12-13,16 NIV

Our stories pique curiosity in the God who fills us with joy and strength. Telling our stories with Holy Spirit power exponentially multiplies their impact on a listener’s heart.

We are Jesus’ witnesses to our town,
to our co-workers, and
to the ends of the earth

Want to dig a little deeper?

#SeedsofScripture #scripturestudy #readsthebiblebetter #transformed #obediencetoGod #servingGod #Godspurposes #joyofthelord #holyspiritpower #canIgetawitness


  1. J.D. Wininger on September 14, 2023 at 1:42 PM

    Some great thoughts and insights here Ms. Cathy. Enjoyed, as I so often do your posts, ma’am.

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