Let me tell you some stories.
First story: I was talking with a friend recently, and he told me an interesting story.
This friend is a musician. He lives & works in the
desert, but he had no air-conditioning in his office. Someone gave him one that didn’t work. He described to me how he was encouraged (someone had thought about his needs) and frustrated (so close, but it still doesn’t work!). California
That’s when the story got interesting. He was thinking about the AC unit and since he’s pretty handy with fixing things, he was trying to get it to work, but without success. As he was grumbling about his lack of success, he heard the Holy Spirit whispering to him. “Try this” he said, and showed him a picture of some accessories for his monitors: these are components for a sound system. Oh, and he just happened to have that part in his pocket.
He applied it as the Holy Spirit suggested and it worked: impossibly and perfectly, and it has been running for several years now.
Together we chuckled: it appears that God is an expert in HVAC repair. That’s somewhat outside of the box that we had had Him in.
Second story: Another friend was out hunting one recent winter with a buddy. In addition to his hunting rifle, he carried a pistol, but this time he had brought a favorite: one that had been a gift from an important friend who had carried it as an officer in a recent war. During the creeping-through-the-undergrowth part of the hunt, the pistol fell unnoticed into the snow and was lost.
His hunting buddy, a good friend of mine, tells this story: frustrated by the loss of our friend’s pistol, he went back to the same hunting grounds, where he prayed. His prayer was well beyond anything he’d prayed before, but “What’s life without a little stretching?” he said.
“God, you know where that pistol is. Would you please show me?” Before he had a chance to entertain second thoughts about his unusual prayer, he felt a nudge: go this way. He spent a couple of hours wandering through the forest this way and that, following the little nudges that he felt, far from any trail or road. It was unusual enough that he had to work hard to quash both the doubts and the excitement that he felt rising.
Then the nudges went away. Stopped altogether.
“Father, would you please show me where the pistol is?” Nothing. Silence. He prayed several more times. Still nothing.
Frustrated and confused, he turned to head back to his truck, but his toe bumped something. He looked down, and there was the pistol. It was a little rusty from spending the winter under the snow, but only a very little as our friend had always kept it well oiled. As you might imagine, he was pretty happy about finding the gun, but even more excited about his adventure with God.
Third story: Corrie TenBoom tells the story of her father’s watch repair business:
The other day, I stumbled across a verse that I’ve read a hundred times:
In this verse, one of many places that He instructs us on the Holy Spirit, Jesus teaches that He’ll do two things: one is that he’ll remind us of what Jesus has said to us.
But the first thing Jesus says here is that the Holy Spirit will teach us all things. All things.
I’ve been thinking about that recently. The Holy Spirit teaches me all things. That sounds too good to be true.
I looked up “all things.” You’d never guess it, but it actually means “all things.” Strong’s concordance describes it as “all, any, every, the whole”; Vine describes it as “every; every kind or variety”; Kittel says it’s “an inclusion of all parts”; Thayer says, “any and every, of every kind”; Balz says it’s “all things/the All (in the broadest sense).” It sounds pretty conclusive to me.
We tend to think of the Holy Spirit teaching us about spiritual things, or at least about things that the Bible commands us to do: raise our children, love our neighbor, help the poor.
But apparently “all things” includes fixing air conditioners, finding lost firearms and repairing broken watches. That would probably extend to astrophysics, gardening, auto mechanics. I could tell you stories about how much He knows about fixing sound systems!
I propose that we let the Holy Spirit teach us, particularly that we let Him teach us about subjects that we don’t discuss in church. We’ll be far wiser people!