By Allison Gingras
“Receive the Holy Spirit.”
In the Holy Spirit, God dwells within us —He is the Wonderful Counselor, Advocate, and Paraclete, which means “he who is called to one’s side” (CCC 692). The Holy Spirit fulfills the Lord’s promise to “never forsake you or abandon you” (Hebrews 13:5). The one of whom Jesus said, “it is better for you that I go,” (John 16:7) because from the Spirit we receive consolation, guidance, and gifts of wisdom, understanding, and more.
An advocate supports people feeling unheard or unable to express their needs adequately. In Romans 8:26, St. Paul teaches one of the incredible truths of how the Spirit works as a support in assuring God hears our prayers. “Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with sighs too deep for words.”
The Advocate at Work
Even when we are at a loss on how to pray, the Holy Spirit perfects our fears, doubts, and desires nestled deep in our souls and brings them to the Father for us. How many groanings has your heart murmured that the Spirit perfected and brought before the Lord?
An advocate ensures a person has the tools to make an informed decision. In our Confirmations, we receive an outpouring of gifts to guide our Christian life. The gifts of wisdom, understanding, counsel, fortitude, knowledge, piety, and fear of the Lord each provide the guidance we need to respond to God’s will in our lives. The grace from living in the Spirit opens our hearts to choose good and desire what the Father desires for us; even if not done perfectly, the devoted Advocate adequately equips us.
Jesus lays clear the Advocate’s work in our world, “And when he comes he will convict the world in regard to sin and righteousness and condemnation: sin, because they do not believe in me; righteousness, because I am going to the Father and you will no longer see me; condemnation, because the ruler of this world has been condemned.” How often has the Holy Spirit convicted our behavior, thoughts, or lack of action? How we respond indicates how willing we are to allow this Wonderful Counselor into our hearts.
Fruit of the Spirit
Curious how to measure the magnitude to which you’ve allowed the Holy Spirit into your life? St. Paul shares that the fruit of living in the Spirit manifests through our love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Galatians 5: 22-23). This incredible life Jesus promises with the Advocate is just a simple prayer away, “Come, Holy Spirit.”
On Pentecost, we celebrate the birthday of the Church, that glorious moment the Holy Spirit “appeared to them tongues as of fire, which parted and came to rest on each one of them” (Acts 2:3). They heard and understood and more importantly, empowered by the Spirit, they proclaimed! With the Advocate at our side, let us go forth this Pentecost Sunday as ambassadors for Christ.
Come, Holy Spirit, into my heart. Come breathe joy, hope, goodness, and all your gifts and fruits into my life of faith. Come, Holy Spirit, Come.
Call to Action
Journal all the ways you see the Holy Spirit at work in your life; feel free to ask the Advocate himself to reveal what you can not see.
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