Bringing People Closer to God
This is the testimony of Richard Prangley,and his conversion to the Lord Jesus Christ through the power of the Holy Spirit. It is Richard’s desire for everyone living on this earth during these challenging times to know and understand the nature of God’s holiness and how He wants us to be ready to meet Jesus Christ when He soon returns to this earth. Only through the power and grace of the Holy Spirit can our hearts be renewed and prepared to meet Him when He comes.
“When I was 6 years old, I was placed in an institution for the developmentally disabled, and suffered unspeakable abuse for 15 years during the incarceration. But all through it, the Holy Spirit was near, and when I was released, He made me an advocate for mental health reform in the state of Michigan. I am grateful to God and His Spirit that today I can serve Him as His advocate and share the testimony of Him with others.”
We still have a God who speaks to us personally by His Word and through His Spirit. Listen to His still, small voice leading you to yield to His Spirit so that you, like the early apostles of Christ, might unlock the code: the power of the Holy Spirit in your life.
Who is the Holy Spirit? In short, the Holy Spirit is God Himself. An invisible, yet inseparable, person of the Trinity: the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Too often, He is the forgotten member of the Godhead. Much is made of the Father and Son – and well should there be – yet not enough of the Spirit. The Holy Spirit is coming to dwell in us, never to leave us, and to empower us for Christian service to others. It is the Spirit who convicts us of our sin, draws us to Christ.
Conviction is the sign of the Holy Spirit working on one’s heart. The word means to bring to light, to expose, to show one’s fault. The Holy Spirit flips the switch, turning on the light and exposing our sin. Being thus convicted of our own sin, The Holy Spirit then draws us close to Christ and performs the work of regeneration and renewal, for the Bible says, we are born “of the Spirt”. (John 3:8). Through the Holy Spirit, we become a new creature in Christ.
Jesus says “The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit.” (also John 3:8). We may not be able to see the wind, but we can certainly see its power blowing the leaves in the trees. So, it is with the Spirit. We may not be able to see Him, but we can certainly see the powerful effect of His presence all around us.
There are some sincere hearted folks, even some believing in Christ as Saviour of the world, who are unaware that the Holy Spirit is the one influencing their hearts and minds to follow Christ. The apostle Paul, when encountering certain disciples of John the Baptist in Ephesus, asked them if they had received the Holy Spirit. Their reply in Acts 19:2 was very revealing, “And they said unto him, we have not heard so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost.”
There is a Holy Ghost. The power of the Holy Ghost (or Spirit) in your life does more to get things done than any other influence you could ever hope to wield. The Holy Spirit will not only give your words power from on high as a testimony for Jesus Christ, He will give your life the power to live for Him. When we get right with God ourselves through the Holy Spirit – and get right with others in the process – we, too, can expect God to manifest His awesome presence.
The same divine mind that is working upon the things of nature is speaking to the hearts of men and women, creating a deep craving for something they have not. The things of this world cannot satisfy their longing. The Spirit of God is pleading with them, with you, with me – to seek for those things that can give peace and rest – the grace of Christ and the joy of holiness.
Friend, do you feel at times a longing for something more in your life than the day-in, day-out routine of work, partying, recovering from partying? Do you feel the speed of life and wondering where it is taking you? Does the pleasure – and heartache – that the world brings bring you to realize maybe there is something more than the things in this world? If you answered yes to any of these things, the Spirit of God is communicating with you, bringing conviction to your heart to search after Him. “You will seek me and find me when you search for me with all of your heart.”
When the heart yields to the influence of the Spirit of God, the conscience will be quickened, and we will discern something of the depth and the sacredness of God’s holy law, the foundation of His government in heaven and on earth. The Holy Spirit will always lift up the eternal law of God and testify that Jesus Christ is the only name under heaven by which men can be saved.
One ray of the glory of God, one gleam of purity of Christ penetrating the soul, makes every spot of our human imperfection painfully distinct, and lays bare the deformity of our human character. The light from the throne of God makes apparent the unhallowed desires, the infidelity of the human heart, and the impurity of man’s thoughts and words. The Spirit of God’s compelling influence on our sinful hearts exposes to our minds our need of something better. And as we see the pure spotless character of Christ, the light comes into our soul that this is what we need – that He is whom we need.
Jesus says, “Abide in Me.” These words convey the idea of rest, stability, confidence. Abiding in Christ, connecting our minds with His through the Holy Spirit is our privilege. When our mind dwells upon self, it is turned away from Christ, the source of strength and life. Hence it Satan’s constant effort to keep our attention diverted from the Saviour and thus prevent the union and communion of the soul with Christ.
When the power of the Holy Spirit is upon you, convincing you of your need for Him – NOW is the time to respond. Now is the time to forsake your do-it-yourself road of heartbreak and evil. Or in some cases, forsaking your path of self-righteous better-than-thou goodness. Beware of procrastination. Do not put off the work of forsaking your sins and seeking purity of heart though Jesus. Here is where thousands upon thousands have erred to their eternal loss. I will not dwell on the terrible shortness and uncertainty of life; but there is a terrible danger – a danger not sufficiently understood – in delaying to the pleading voice of God’s Holy Spirit.
Jesus Christ is the Son of the Living God, the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father except by me, said Jesus. Why not right now – wherever you are – as you hear Him speak in His still, small voice to your heart, ask Jesus into your heart and be His friend forever – for now and for eternity.
I am Richard Prangley, and as this testimony comes to a close, I would like to recite the Lord’s Prayer with you.
“Our Father which art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory forever and ever. Amen.