An Athlete Filled with the Holy Spirit

Exodus 31

1 Then the Lord said to Moses, “See, I have chosen Bezalel son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah, and I have filled him with the Spirit of God, with wisdom, with understanding, with knowledge and with all kinds of skills— to make artistic designs for work in gold, silver and bronze, to cut and set stones, to work in wood, and to engage in all kinds of crafts.

We tend to have a distorted view of God and the Holy Spirit.  While it is true that we see many manifestations of the Holy Spirit, especially in the book of Acts, the Holy Spirit is much more than speaking in tongues, healings, or powerful shakings.  The Bible speaks of the Gifts of the Spirit listing 18 different gifts (1 Corinthians 12; Romans 12:6-8; Ephesians 4:11).  I believe God can provide even more spiritual gifts to us as believers.  The scripture in Exodus says that God filled Bezalel with “all kinds of skills”.  God gives the Gifts of the Spirit “just as he determines” (1 Cor. 12:11).

What may surprise you is that in the above scripture from Exodus, it is the first time in the Bible that a man is described as being “filled with the spirit of God”.  This man Bezalel wasn’t a priest or a prophet.  There is no earth-shattering description of God’s spirit causing him to shake or speak in another tongue.  He was a man who worked with his hands and God decided to fill him with his spirit to accomplish an incredible task – that was designing and building the Ark of the Covenant, which would ultimately hold the commandments of God, and His very spirit.

Isn’t it interesting that God chose to first fill a common labourer with his spirit?  I believe God wanted to make it very clear that he makes no distinction between the sacred and the secular in our lives.  All of our lives need to be led by the Holy Spirit whom we received when we accepted Jesus into our hearts (Ephesians 1:13).  He also gives us specific gifts of the Holy Spirit for the purpose of advancing his kingdom on earth.

As an athlete you may be frequently called talented, that is a person who has numerous talents and skills.  And God may have made you very talented, but of greater value is to be filled with the Holy Spirit and to be operating with the Gifts of the Spirit.  I believe, like Bezalel, God can fill Athletes with his Spirit to fully accomplish his purposes.  Never separate your athletic endeavours from your “church work”.  Never turn it into “secular” vs “sacred”.  Your life is sacred in God’s eyes and he will give you his gifts of the Spirit as he determines.  Pray to God and ask him to fill you with his Spirit to accomplish all he has prepared for you to do.

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