Guilt will wear one down. Real healing and restoration comes not from therapists, medication, and good intentions, but rather from depths of faith. How do you do that? ♦
I had a friend approach me this week about an old friend of his, another Christian, caught up in sexual sin that was destroying his marriage, friends, and life. My friend conveyed that the broken man acknowledged his sad plight and knew the damage being done to himself and other parties, yet seemed resigned to continued failure in turning around his situation.
“I know, I know,” he apparently said. “But it’s just what it is and it’s not getting better.”
He had given up, or at least had given in to his own sin and was not willing to change things.
My friend likened it to one caught in the web of pornography who cannot or will not pull themselves out of their addiction. For that matter, it’s like anyone caught in any addiction, be in alcohol, drugs, sex, gambling, or even shopping. The intent to heal may be real, but the real will and commitment to change is much more complicated and difficult.
And is that difficulty compounded if one is a Christian?
Yes. Certainly the guilt will wear one down. But real healing and resolution comes not from therapists, medication, and good intentions, but rather from depths of faith.
Christian faith. Specifically what I call a Holy Spirit Breakdown.
The Spirit of Christian Guilt
But first let’s address sin and guilt. There’s a common reference that people make to so-called “Catholic guilt.” It’s usually made by current or recovering Catholics who were raised with the strong and constant reminder of guilt for their sins, for their thoughts, for their need for repentance, for their failure to confess their sins. Just guilt all around.
Then we wonder why “religion” gets such a bad name. Makes it a bummer just to be alive. That’s not how it has to be.
Yes, of course, we all are guilty of sin. We’re born into it and cannot escape judgment, whether murderers, slanderers, or gossips (see Romans 1). But the point is that we are forgiven. We can be made whole and right. It’s all in how we take in that forgiveness and move forward.
If we believe and surrender our life to Christ, we have been given a helper, an advocate, the oft-times misunderstood Holy Spirit. The term “Holy Ghost” does not do Him justice.“…for he lives with you and will be in you.” (John 14:17)
So What is a Holy Spirit Breakdown?
I told my friend that his broken friend needed a Holy Spirit Breakdown. “What’s does that mean?” my friend asked. Here’s what I told him:
- As believers we’re given access to the Holy Spirit, also known as the Comforter, Counselor, Helper, Intercessor, Strengthener, etc. As noted in the scripture text below, Jesus specifically does not leave us alone.
- The Holy Spirit can and should be like an intimate friend to us.
- He is available to us directly – in tangible and discernible ways.
- We, like that broken friend, need to reset on our prayers and good intentions:
- Get on our knees (actually literally as a physical act of submission).
- In prayer invite the Holy Spirit into your immediate presence.
- Admit our sin to God in humble confession (No, we don’t need a priest for this. We now ourselves have direct access to God the Father by way of the Holy Spirit.)
- Admit and submit the full relinquishing of our addiction and burden to God, surrendering all authority to God through the power of the Holy Spirit to transform and restore us to wholeness.
- Know and believe that the power of God is greater than the power of any force/evil in this world.
- Know that any transformation is over time and comes with continued abiding and development of your relationship with the Spirit of God.
We need to break our own will. We need the breakdown, done by the power of the Living God whose Spirit resides in us and is available to come alive upon the releasing of our own control and direction. When we have a Holy Spirit Breakdown with a new vision of a life submitted to God, He is able to rebuild, restore and resurrect the broken rubble of our lives.
Have you had a Holy Spirit Breakdown?
“And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever — the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.” – John 14:16-18