Christianity --Youth Issues/Holy Spirit

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Question
QUESTION: Please provide help in explaining the Holy Spirit to my teens. An illustration will be appreciated.

ANSWER: Do you want an illustration of just the Holy Spirit, or scriptural references, or how the Holy Spirit fits in with the Trinity?

Thanks,
Carl


---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: I am quite happy with the biblical references I have found.  I am just in need of an illustration of the holy spirit in our lives.  If this comes out of teaching of the trinity, than that is fine.  I teach and preach to teens and I feel they need concrete illustrations to relate to their everyday lives.  If the illustration is tied into a biblical reference, that is ok also.  Any thoughts will help.

Answer
Adrian -

Sorry this took so long.  I couldn't find any great illustrations on the Holy Spirit alone, but my good friend Gene came up with this one:

a balloon

The Holy Spirit is the presence of God living unseen, but most definitely felt, within us.

Interestingly both the Greek word "pneuma" and the Hebrew word "ru'ach" which we translate into Spirit can also be translated to mean either "wind" or "breath". One way to illustrate the vital need of the continued indwelling of the Holy Spirit is to tell people to just stop breathing in the middle of your speech. No warning, no big deep breath that they compete on holding. Just stop right now. Most won't be too comfortable with that. And neither would be the Holy Spirit who wants to flow throw our lives.

(Blow up a balloon}
Say, "As God breathed his Spirit into Adam to animate him with life, God was not just breathing in air, but the very presence of himself. So, too, God fills us. But he doesn't fill us to simply float along. He sent the wind of the Holy Spirit on the disciples to also fill them with his presence, not to stay put in the Upper Room, but to empower them with energy and power to go out into the world and empty themselves for Christ there." (Release the balloon)

(Pick-up the empty balloon)
Say, "So too we are to breathe-in and breathe-out the presence of God in our lives. First filled with his presence as his disciples, and then also like his disciples emptying of ourselves in ministry in the world." This is what the Christian life is about, just as our lungs are designed much like a set of balloons, so too our Christian life involves a breathing process: Holy Spirit in (take a deep breath), Holy Spirit out (let out a big breath). And we just keep repeating that throughout our lives -- Holy Spirit in, Holy Spirit out.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

An example of the Trinity from a more concrete standpoint requirestwo bottles of water and a teapot full of water.

Freeze one of the bottles of water.

The frozen bottle represents God - solid, like a rock, our firm foundation.  But it's still water

The other bottle represents Jesus in our lives, living water, still water.

The teapot on the stove will produce steam, representing the holy spirit - still water (God), but in a form that moves and acts with the wind and nature.


Hope these help.  Let us know how it works out and I'll forward it to Gene.

Carl

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Carl F.

Expertise

I can answer questions from teens & young adults concerning their faith walk and on social issues which affect their lives. I can answer questions on sex, homosexuality, or drugs, and anything else that might be troubling you. After 30 years in youth ministry, nothing shocks me, and I promise to give straight answers to any and all questions. I can also answer questions from youth workers on problems they`re having with programming or with their groups.

Experience

I have been involved in youth and young adult ministries as a volunteer for over 35 years. I am currently a volunteer youth minister in a suburban UM church - I have a small group of 7th and 8th graders.

Organizations
United Methodist Church, Chrysalis, Walk to Emmaus, Cursillo

Education/Credentials
Several training seminars, 9 years at National Youth Workers Convention, 1 year at Princeton Forum on Youth Ministry

Awards and Honors
Certified lay speaker for UM Church

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