It is the love and approachability of God as a good Father that empowers a believer for every good work.
Over the weekend of July 2 and 3, City Harvest Church’s advisory pastor Phil Pringle preached about the loving fatherhood of God and the power of the Holy Spirit.
He opened with Matthew 7:9-11 which reads, “Or what man is there among you who, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent? If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!”
Pringle described God as a Father who “loves dangerously”, one who always encouraged His children to step out and face their challenges, and in the process learn to be tougher. He contrasted this with a parent who is always telling a child to “be careful” at the park or playground.
Focusing on the word “Father” in that passage, Pringle shared that it is the love of Father God that allows believers to be empowered.
“Sometimes things don’t work the way we want them to work, but we get tougher,” he said. “Instead of feeling entitled, we feel empowered. We actually can become stronger in character.”
“The center of Christian belief is the approachability of God,” Phil Pringle tells the congregation. “When you ask God for the Holy Spirit, you get the Holy Spirit.”
Quoting Zephaniah 3:17, “The Lord your God in your midst, The Mighty One, will save; He will rejoice over you with gladness, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing,” Pringle said that God’s love for His children is full of joy, spinning around and singing.
“Our God is an approachable God, our fellowship is with the Father,” he declared.
He then shared his life story about searching for God. As a youth, he went to the top of the mountain and shouted, “God! God! Where are You, God?” Suddenly, he felt God there with him, saying, “Let’s fellowship.”
Pringle told the congregation, “Your value to the Father is beyond your wildest imagination. He will do anything to recover fellowship with you.”
There are times where believers will travel through fire, but it is in these times that “you must never, ever, in those troubled times, doubt the love of the Father. He who has begun a good work in you, will complete it till the day of Jesus Christ,” said the preacher.
Drawing from Psalms 91:1, he reminded the congregation, “The secret place is where God lives. In this secret place is where you connect and fellowship with the Father. Make sure you’ve got a secret place to fellowship with the Father.”
During the Sunday service, Pringle preached about the Holy Spirit. “The Holy Spirit is a person,” he said. “You need to get personal encounters with Him. He has come to equip you, to do the job God has given you.”
Firstly, the Holy Spirit transforms those who believe in Him. Sharing from 2 Corinthians 3:18, Pringle reminded the congregation: “You are the glory of God on the Earth. You will grow towards what you believe you are. Be transformed by the renewing of your mind.”
The Holy Spirit strengthens believers. “God is looking for faith. When you are afraid, be bold! For the Lord, your God is with you!” Pringle said, preaching out of Ephesians 3:16.
The Holy Spirit also anoints the believers, Pringle said, referencing Luke 4:18. “He has equipped His children for every good work.”
The Holy Spirit also makes intercession for and prays through the believers when they do not know how to pray. “Prayer is not built just through me, but for me. The kingdom of God is built upon the spiritual and it cannot end,” said Pringle, referring to Romans 8:26.
Pringle concluded his teaching with Ezekiel 37:10, reminding the believer that the Holy Spirit stands with him. “He has placed in you visions and dreams. Speak to the dry bones and they will come alive. We all need the fresh oil of the Holy Spirit.”