By Paul Mould
I am sure you’ve had the experience of searching for something, only to find it a while later in an obvious place - somewhere where you had looked several times before and not seen it. The object was clearly visible but couldn’t be seen with just a casual glance. The phrase “hidden in plain sight” (meaning ‘to remain unseen despite being in full view’1) describes this event well. During a period of spiritual renewal in the mid-1990s I had a similar experience concerning the Holy Spirit in the Bible. Verses that I hadn’t even noticed before spoke to me about the work of the Spirit, and I suddenly started seeing references to the Spirit everywhere, especially in the life of Jesus and the early church. Even in the familiar Lent passage about the temptation of Jesus (Luke 4:1-14), I noticed that it was the Holy Spirit who led Jesus into the desert and then brought Him through that time overflowing with the Spirit’s power. One verse that especially leapt off the page for me was from Luke 10:21: “At that same time Jesus was filled with the joy of the Holy Spirit” (NLT). I had been experiencing a lot of joy and laughter in those days, and now I understood that the Holy Spirit also filled Jesus with same joy. I also came to a new appreciation that the Spirit had come to lead and empower me, just as He did in Jesus’ life. Then there was the delightful discovery that I could speak to the Spirit and He would respond, that He was affectionate and full of grace.
The work of the Holy Spirit is often in the secret place: hidden from others but obvious to us, if only we have eyes to see. It’s in the place of sweet fellowship with Him, who is the Lover of our souls. He is so worthy of our love and appreciation; we would be still lost and in darkness without Him. Recently, I have started to address Him with terms of praise and endearment like “Wonderful Holy Spirit”, “Amazing Holy Spirit”, and “Precious Holy Spirit”, rather than just “Holy Spirit”, and I have been surprised how warmly He responds to my affection. So this Lent, why not set aside some time with no agenda except to be with Him, to honour, love and worship Him2.
Holy Spirit, thank You so much for being in my heart and life today. Please forgive me for the times when I haven’t recognised all the things you have done for me and in me. I gladly surrender my life to you. Please help me to appreciate and love you more, so that Jesus may be glorified in me and through me. Amen.
2. Part of the final paragraph is adapted from “Solid Foundations: An Introductory Course for New Christians” A.P. Mould, 2021. An e-book available on Kindle.