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Summary: "More filling--relate great!" When we have more filling of the Holy Spirit, we can relate great in our marriages, families, and workplaces.

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INTRODUCTION:

Tim Sanders—former chief solutions officer at Yahoo! and author of Love Is the Killer App—shares the following thought about establishing priorities:

Take your life and all the things that you think are important, and put them in one of three categories. These three categories are represented by three items: glass, metal, and rubber.

The things that are made of rubber, when you drop them, will bounce back. Nothing really happens when these kinds of things get dropped. So, for instance (and I really enjoy sports, but if I miss a Carolina game, my life will bounce along real fine. It doesn't change anything and nothing is lost—my missing a game or a season of basketball will not alter my marriage or my spiritual life. I can drop it with no problem.

Things that are made of metal, when they get dropped, create a lot of noise. But you can recover from the drop. You miss a meeting at work or a deadline on a project, you didn’t do so good on your grades last semester—that's going to create a little bit of noise in your life, but you can recover from it.

Then there are things made of glass. And when you drop one of these, it will shatter into pieces and never be the same. Even though you can piece it back together, it will still be missing some pieces. It certainly won't look the same, and the consequences of it be being broken will forever affect how it's used. What in your life can you not afford to drop? What are your top priorities? You're the only person who knows what those things are. I'm going to venture a guess--more than likely, they have a lot to do with your relationships. Your marriage, your family, your friends, your walk with God.

>> The New Testament gives us some helpful instruction on setting our life’s priorities, on helping us understand what not to drop:

I. TO LIVE WISELY, WE MUST BE FILLED WITH THE HOLY SPIRIT (15-20)

A. The command “be careful how you live” is explained by three “not this, but that” contrasts:

1. Not as fools, but as wise (15b)

2. Not thoughtlessly, but understanding the Lord’s will (17)

3. Not drunk, but filled with the Spirit (18)

B. Note Paul's comparison between drunkenness and the Holy Spirit’s filling:

1. There is a superficial similarity.

a. A person who is drunk is said to be “under the influence” of alcohol, and certainly a Spirit-filled Christ follower is under the influence and power of the Holy Spirit.

b. If we say a person is filled with grief, or joy, we have no trouble understanding that the emotion dominates their being and describes what they are really like.

2. Being filled with the Spirit is not a kind of spiritual inebriation where we lose control of ourselves—one of the fruit of the Spirit is “self-control.” Under the influence of the Holy Spirit we don’t lose control, we gain it.

3. “Be filled” is a command—it is obligatory, not optional.

a. It is in the plural form, meaning it is addressed to the whole Christian community.


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