Holy Spirit – The Assistant Coach

John 16: 13But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come.

The position of assistant coach is an interesting one.  In many ways they have a more challenging job than the coach.  They need to address the needs of the players or athletes, but they need to do so in a way that represents the vision of the head coach rather than their own; in short they need to honour the head coach in all they do.  Probably one of the biggest tasks of the Assistant Coach is consistently disseminating the vision of the Head Coach in all of their interactions with the team and outside.

I read an article recently entitled “What makes a good assistant coach?” (SB Nation, May 1, 2014) The author suggested the key qualities of a good assistant coach are: loyalty, trust, willingness to contribute without second-guessing, communication, and hard work.  I’d have to agree with that list, and would add that understanding the coaches vision, and buying into it are key.

While I acknowledge the Trinity (God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit) is more complex, at least simplistically the Holy Spirit reminds me of the assistant coach.  If we read John 16 we read in verses 13-14 that “He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. He will glorify me because it is from me that he will receive what he will make known to you.”

Of the three persons of the Trinity, the Holy Spirit is easily the most misrepresented.  Some people only think of strange manifestations when they think of the Holy Spirit but he is so much more.   The Holy Spirit, like the assistant coach, understands and communicates the vision of the coach – God’s vision.  We read earlier in John 16 that he “will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment” (vs 8).  This picture of someone who speaks what he hears from God, who prophesies, who convicts people of sin, is significantly different than what most people attribute to the Holy Spirit, but it is Biblical.

If you are a believer, the Holy Spirit lives in you (2 Tim. 1:14).  Are you allowing him to be your counselor?  Are you allowing him to lead you and to convict you of sin in your life?  If you continue to listen to the Holy Spirit then your conscience will remain tender, but if you do not, you run the risk of developing a hardened heart and be rendered ineffective for Christ.

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