Having a form of godliness but denying (resisting) its power. (2 Timothy 3:5 / NIV, parenthesis added)
The air conditioning was on full blast but we were still burning up.
Our party hostess was exasperated. Over thirty people crowded into her living room, dining room, and hallway. The air was hot and muggy as everyone visited with old friends while meeting new ones. I felt and looked gross with my dress shirt sticking to me.
After two hours of this friendly discomfort, one of the guests noticed the air conditioning vents were all closed. As most of us have probably done, the downstairs air vents were shut so the air would flow more efficiently upstairs – where the homeowner spent most of her time. Having gotten so used to being comfortable upstairs, and seldom being downstairs, she forgot to open the vents for the party. Within fifteen minutes after opening them, the temperature dropped and we started cooling off. Oh, the difference it made when the vent restrictions were removed and the air was allowed to flow as intended.
Opening the Power Source
That situation brought today’s verse to mind. Frequently, I find myself desperately trying to measure up to a godly lifestyle. But quite often, I restrict the very power that enables me to do so. Then I wonder why I feel spiritually inadequate or defeated.
Jesus compared the Christian life to grape vines attached to Him as the main branch. Imagine if a vine became entangled with another vine or grew pressed against the grape trellis so the nutrients from the main branch couldn’t flow freely and fully. That vine would be withered and its fruit would more resemble raisins than grapes. Just as no cool air flows through closed vents, there is no strength or fruit by restricting or resisting the main source of nutrition.
How can we ensure our spiritual vents are open so God’s refreshing breeze can blow through our lives? Abide in Him – maintain a free-flowing and intimate level of communication with God. Be open to the Holy Spirit’s influence in our lives – don’t resist what He is doing. Listen to, learn, and apply what God reveals to you. Keep your spiritual temperature aligned with God’s thermostat.
“God, please keep my spiritual vents open and my temperature tied to Your power source. Help me to abide in You, to remain open to Your Spirit’s leading, and to be a conduit for your refreshing wind so it may cool the stressed and overheated souls around me.”