Last weekend I had the opportunity to see the movie “Harriet” based on the life and work of Harriet Tubman, an anti-slavery advocate and the most famous conductor on the Underground Railroad. There is much to be learned about social justice and reflections on society even today, but the movie also focused on the spiritual aspects of Harriet’s life. In the movie, the Holy Spirit often speaks to her and she is asked, “How do you hear from God?” She replies by describing how she puts “all of her focus on him.” The real Harriet Tubman was known for “consulting with God” and carefully listening to his voice as she led slaves north. She would only go where he was leading her.
I was reminded of how we all have the same opportunity as Harriet to tap into the Holy Spirit and his overwhelming power in our lives. Jesus himself told the disciples that God was sending a Helper to his people. He said, “The Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everything and make you remember all that I have told you” (John 14:26).
Throughout the New Testament, we read how the Holy Spirit was a constant guide to many of the early church believers. He “spoke through them” as they faced many obstacles that could have resulted in life or death like Harriet encountered.
We do not often face life or death situations because of our beliefs in present day America, but God’s spirit is available to each of us the exact same way. All it takes is being willing to be still and sit in the presence of God.
This can be a difficult thing to do in the world of distractions, with endless entertainment options readily available. But the God of the universe invites each of us into his presence to hear, talk and listen to him speak.
I am reminded of Jesus' words in John 16:13 as he says, “When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come.”
The Spirit of God is waiting to speak to you. Are you listening?