'In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams. Even on my servants, both men and women, I will pour out my Spirit in those days, and they will prophesy. I will show wonders in the heaven above and signs on the earth below, blood and fire and billows of smoke. The sun will be turned to darkness and the moon to blood before the coming of the great and glorious day of the Lord. And everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.'
How much joy could you take before you started laughing uncontrollably? Have you ever laughed so much that you couldn't stand up straight? Look at those children enjoying a moment of unalloyed mirth. Have you ever heard a toddler in a fit of giggles? It's a wonderful sound. Now how would you feel if someone started criticising them for lacking self-control? Now that would be absurd, even offensive. Let's remember that the joy of the Holy Spirit is real joy. It is not something so deep that it can barely be felt. It may even make you laugh, dare I say it, even uncontrollably. May I suggest that the self-control that the Spirit gives us is given so that we may live godly, holy lives,(Titus 2:11-12), and not for resisiting His work in us.
Thanks to Suz for reminding me about this great talk from Holy Trinity Brompton from Pentecost Sunday. Just click on the image to listen.