The Holy Spirit vs Events

What is the Christian experience?

This is a question I’m raising because of how event-oriented church can be. Every Sunday we go to a location, we sit or stand in a chair, we listen to someone talk, we sing songs, etc. In addition, we go to regular conferences and events which, over time, have their monotony to it.

With that being said, I’m curious as to whether we are more adept at interacting at events versus interacting with the Holy Spirit as part of our everyday Christian experience.

Granted, these things aren’t necessarily mutually exclusive. But imagine for a second a typical believer. Which one of these activities are they more adept at–going to a service or listening in the morning for God’s voice and acting on it?

Which can they talk about the nuances of? Which do they have more stories about? Which can they teach others to do more easily? Which do they talk about as a starting point for explaining to non Christians what the Christian experience is?

The answer to those questions reveals whether we are more acquainted with interacting with God’s Spirit or simply going to Christian events.

And which, really, more aptly defines what a Christian is?

One of the main things that one can read from the book of Acts was how their version of Christianity was not events-oriented but Spirit-oriented.


While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, “Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.”

When Paul placed his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they spoke in tongues and prophesied.

When they came to the border of Mysia, they tried to enter Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus would not allow them to.

Events vs the Holy Spirit…

Which are we better at? Which orientation defines more of our Christian experience?

And then we will see that this dichotomy is not false and that perhaps we are amiss in our events-driven Christianity.

Posted by Phillip Chan

Phil has been writing in the Black Box for 10 years. His passion is to grow in his love for Jesus to obey his purposes in our generation.

1 comment

  1. theresistanceradioshow

    Thank you!

    Absolutely modern american church culture is events oriented. There’s a conference or retreat or camp or concert for every thing. I declined to take a “worship arts” class because ot was about powerpoint.

    I work for a ministry that frequently hosts volunteers. Students and leaders alike largely interpret their faith through events and experiences. Events are designed to be “fun” and “engaging”. They often result in emotional highs. I’ve seen numerous Christians bounce from one “meaningful” event-driven experience to the next, all the while ignoring what the Holy Spirit was telling them.

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