Big idea: The gospel gives us access to the Holy Spirit.
There are no substitutes for presence. Someone can send a card, call you on the phone or give you a gift, but when you love them, there is nothing as good as being together. If we have learned nothing else from the coronavirus pandemic, it is probably that. We need to be together and need the strength that other people provide. So what is the greatest gift God can give us? Himself. He gives us many gifts, but nothing more precious than choosing to live with us and in us. The gospel gives us access to His Spirit, to empower and direct us.
The people we are around have a profound impact on us. Some people bring out the best in us and others bring out the worst. The intensity of the effects of people vary; some people touch us only superficially and others reshape us. But God is of course more intense than any human. Paul here compares the influence of being filled with the Spirit to drunkenness: like someone drunk has lost control of their lives to alcohol, the influence of the Holy Spirit completely reshapes our decisions and mindset. But unlike alcohol that smothers our best selves, the Holy Spirit empowers us to be the people we were born to be.
Older kids: Who in your life brings out the best in you? Do you have any friends that undermine your attitude or your good habits?
Those filled with the Spirit sing in their hearts to the Lord, encourage one another, give thanks to God for everything, and submit to one another. It is a life totally transformed in our relationship with God, other people and our overall attitude. The closer our relationship with God goes the more transformed we are.
Discussion idea: How does the presence of the Holy Spirit empower you to do more than you could ever do on your own?
Prayer focus: Ask God to help you demonstrate the influence of the Spirit in your life.