There is a feature associated with many products and services with which we are familiar. The more complex the product or service, the greater the need for this feature. It is only of use once you have acquired the item or have embarked on the project. Only after you have committed yourself do you get the benefits of this feature. If you are reading this piece on your computer screen, the chances are that at the very top of the screen on the right-hand side of the menu you will be able to see a version of this; it is summed up in the word “help”. Most computer programmes have this function and when you try to use it you will find that the programme designers have tried to explain how you can use the programme and have second-guessed the questions you may want answered.
The effectiveness of the help programme is variable and often depends on understanding the language of the programme so that you can ask the right questions and then understand the answer given. Many a computer-based worker finds themself shouting at the screen during this dialogue.
Joining in the noise is the customer on hands and knees, trying to make some sense of the diagram which came with the flat-packed item which, because it is sold worldwide, has only pictures and no written instructions!
Whether it is a computer programme, flat-packed item, car, electrical goods or fragile luxury, we want after-sales help, care and support.
When the support documents don’thelp, we can in some instances go on-line to the company website where more questions may be answered. Most useful, and often the most difficult to obtain is support from a human expert who can guide you through your problem.
It is the work of customer support to help you after you have committed yourself. It is the work of the Holy Spirit to help you with your life as a committed Christian. Because life is very complex, we need this support to be comprehensive. Many of our questions have been addressed in the support documentation (sometimes called the bible) but we also need the Spirit of God to lead us through the jargon and fit the resource to our requests.
Although there are similarities and analogies between the work of the Spirit and other forms of help and support, as you would expect there is a profundity and elegance which makes the work of the Spirit much more powerful.
To start with, there is no expiry date. This help does not run out after 2-5 years. It is a 24-hour, 365 days per year service with no down-time. Most useful is that the Spirit of God is a person – he speaks the language of the designer and the language of humanity. Sometimes described as the Comforter, capturing the latin meaning of giving strength, at others described as the Teacher – enabling us to learn, and yet again as the Helper, coming along side. This person’s role in your life is to help you cope.
Many of us may be unaware of the scope and depth of help available. We often use a fraction of the resources at our disposal. One of our mistakes as Christians is to forget that the Spirit of God can help us in every area of work, even the technical side. Asking for wisdom, insight and help is not limited to the people or personal side of life. He really is the one who can help us cope with everything. That is his pleasure and our great comfort.
John 14: 15-16
15“If you love me, you will obey what I command. 16And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever.
John 16: 5-7
5“Now I am going to him who sent me, yet none of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’ 6Because I have said these things, you are filled with grief. 7But I tell you the truth: It is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Counselor will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you.
John 16: 12-15
12“I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. 13But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. 14He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you. 15All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will take from what is mine and make it known to you.
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