We are living in the age of the Holy Spirit. At the end of His ministry, Jesus said He would send the Holy Spirit to lead us into the truth that He came to reveal.
In John 7:38 Jesus was speaking of the Holy Spirit when He said, “He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water” (NKJV).
The Holy Spirit has come and is releasing life-giving waters that lie deep within the one who will yield to Him. The Holy Spirit opens our eyes to see life from His perspective. When we yield to the Holy Spirit we will find ourselves taking on new interests and priorities in our lives.
Fruitfulness in life comes as a result of yielding to the Spirit. To yield means “to give up or to give yourself over.” It also means “to open yourself with an open hand to receive from another.”
Yielding to the Holy Spirit means that we give up our own ideas and efforts, and put ourselves in His hand. We approach Him with an empty hand that is open and ready to receive from Him. It is impossible to grasp one thing when our hands are holding onto something else.
There are different levels of relationship with the Holy Spirit which are important to understand. The first type of relationship we can experience is the Spirit within us. The fact that He is in the earth today gives every person the opportunity to enter into a personal relationship with Him. There is no one He cannot reach and no one who cannot reach Him. Although He is available to all, His availability does not mean that a relationship with Him comes automatically.
In John 14:16,17 Jesus said: “And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever — the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you” (NKJV).
The disciples witnessed the influence of the Holy Spirit among them. However, they had not yet moved from an outer experience of His presence to His indwelling. They knew Him outwardly, but soon He would come to dwell within them.
This brings us to the second type of relationship we can experience with the Holy Spirit: His dwelling place. The prophet Ezekiel spoke of this relationship.
“Then I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean; I will cleanse you from all your filthiness and from all your idols. I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will keep My judgments and do them” (Ezekiel 36:25-27 NKJV).
The desire of the Holy Spirit as described in Ezekiel has been to make us His dwelling place. He will remove our stony hearts and replace them with hearts that are tender and sensitive toward Him and His ways. Then from this tender and sensitive heart — alive to the Spirit — we are able to commune with God and enjoy His presence.