Date: June 19, 2022
Indwelt by the Spirit
The Point: The Holy Spirit’s presence in our lives affirms our relationship with God.
Get Into the Study
Use the following to introduce today’s session.
Google Trends for 2021 lists the most searched “How to be” phrases in the United States:
#1. “How to be eligible for stimulus check.”
#2. “How to be more attractive.”
#3. “How to be happy alone.”
We are now half-way through 2022, but “loneliness” continues to pop up in news articles, with both the BBC and The New York Times referring to loneliness as an “epidemic.” A search for the phrase “loneliness epidemic” reveals the situation began before covid lock-downs and persists afterward.
Can humans ever learn “How to be happy alone”? Do we have to?
As we continue to study the Holy Spirit this week, we will see how the Holy Spirit’s presence affirms that we are not alone. More than “happiness,” we find joy, peace, and love through relationship with an ever-present God.
Nikki Wilbanks grew up in Tennessee before heading to California to study literature at Pepperdine University. She enjoyed a decade-long career as a commercial real estate appraiser and investor in Southern California. Back in Tennessee now, she loves being a mom and writer.
Get Into the Study [from Adult Leader Guide, p. 37 and KJV Adult Leader Guide, p. 40]
In advance, play a video clip illustrating someone dealing with car trouble. Then ask Question #1.
Study the Bible [from Adult Leader Guide, p. 45 and KJV Adult Leader Guide, p. 48]
In advance, prepare a worship video or audio clip that speaks of the presence of the Holy Spirit. Invite someone in your group who is musically inclined to lead the group in worship. Then close in prayer.
Live It Out
Use the following story to conclude your study of this session.
A recent study shows that dogs can recognize their owners’ voices without using any of their other senses, including smell. “The researchers at Eötvös Loránd University in Budapest, Hungary, invited 28 dogs and their owners to play hide-and-seek in the lab, with the dogs tasked with finding their owners behind one of two hiding places while a stranger hid behind the other one.” Playing a recording of their owner reading a recipe in one hiding place, and a recording of the stranger reading a recipe in the other hiding place, the dogs found their owner’s voice 82% of the time, even when the recording was playing near the stranger, proving that dogs naturally rely more on their ears than their noses to successfully seek out their owners.
As Christians, we might be surprised by how instinctively we recognize the voice of the Holy Spirit—as well as how immediately we are able to know when something is not of God. Something within us knows when God is asking us to do something—our hearts begin to pound, we may feel nervous or excited—we just know! It is such a gift. We hear His voice because we are His people, and because we have the gift of the Holy Spirit dwelling in us. The Holy Spirit confirms that we belong to the Lord—and the more we obey His words and follow Him, the more clearly we will be able to hear Him. May we always respond to the sweet sound of God, calling us into a deeper relationship with Him.
How have you heard God speaking to you lately? When have you been most certain the Lord was asking you to do something for Him?
- When have you had to do something difficult on your own?
- Where do you go when you just want to be alone?
- When have you been comforted by someone’s presence?
- Why do you have assurance that the Spirit lives in you?
- What is the difference between being “in the flesh” and “in the Spirit”?
- How would you explain the inheritance of “life because of righteousness” to a person who has depended upon self-righteousness?
- How does the Spirit lead you to live for Christ?
- How can believers distinguish between the leadership of the Holy Spirit and a desire to live by the flesh?
- How has the Holy Spirit changed your attitude toward sin?
- When it comes to a believer’s relationship with God, what is the difference between a “spirit of slavery” and a “spirit of adoption”?
- Why is the concept of adoption such a powerful contrast regarding the concept of slavery?
- How would you explain adoption in the spiritual sense?
For Those in Your Group
Send the following link to your group members as either a teaser before the group meets or as a follow-up thought:
Click here for a 20-minute podcast for both the group member and the leader.
This article complements the study. Share this link with your group members.
- HomeLife – In Your Presence