The Reality of How the Holy Spirit Works in You

Do others see Christ-like character in you?
Do others see Christ-like character in you? (Getty Images )

It is the Holy Spirit's job to produce Christ-like character in you.

The Bible says, "But we all, seeing the glory of the Lord with unveiled faces, as in a mirror, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory by the Spirit of the Lord" (2 Cor. 3:18). This process of changing us to be more like Jesus is called sanctification.

You cannot reproduce the character of Jesus in your own strength. New Year's resolutions, willpower and best intentions are not enough. Only the Holy Spirit has the power to make the changes God wants to make in our lives. The Bible says, "For God is the One working in you, both to will and to do His good pleasure" (Phil. 2:13).

Mention the "power of the Holy Spirit" and many people think of miraculous demonstrations and intense emotions. But most of the time, the Holy Spirit's power is released in your life in quiet, unassuming ways that you aren't even aware of or feel. He often nudges us with "a still, small voice" (1 Kings 19:12b).

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Christ-likeness is not produced by imitation but by inhabitation. We allow Christ to live through us. "To them God would make known what is the glorious riches of this mystery among the nations. It is Christ in you, the hope of glory" (Col. 1:27).

How does this happen in real life? Through the choices we make. We choose to do the right thing in situations and then trust God's Spirit to give us His power, love, faith and wisdom to do it. Since God's Spirit lives inside of us, these things are always available for the asking.

Talk It Over

  • Why do you think God allows you to choose whether or not you respond to the Holy Spirit's moving in your life?
  • If the Holy Spirit often works in quiet, unassuming ways, what can you do to become more sensitive to His work in your life?
  • Ask God to give you a new awareness of the Holy Spirit and for Him to work in you and make you more like Jesus. Ask Him to take away your fear and give you boldness as you fulfill your purpose through the power of God's Spirit in you.

Rick Warren is the founding pastor of Saddleback Church. His book, The Purpose Driven Church, was named one of the 100 Christian books that changed the 20th century. He is also founder of, a global internet community for pastors.

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