D.L. Moody: Full Already or Empty

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And the disciples were filled with joy and with the Holy Spirit. Acts 13:52

“I believe firmly, that the moment our hearts are emptied of pride and selfishness and ambition and self-seeking, and everything that is contrary to God’s law, the Holy Ghost will come and fill every corner of our hearts; but if we are full of pride and conceit, and ambition and self-seeking, and pleasure and the world, there is no room for the Spirit of God; and I believe many a man is praying to God to fill him when he is full already with something else. Before we pray that God would fill us, I believe we ought to pray Him to empty us.”

D.L. Moody (1837-1899) in “Secret Power or The Secret Success in Christian Life and Work,” excerpt from chapter two, in The D.L. Moody Collection (Karpathos Collection: Pronoun, 2015).

During Holy Week we journey with Jesus who surrendered His will for the will of the Father. That’s what happens with prayer, fasting, and almsgiving. We empty ourselves, we set aside our desires, and we ask God to fill us.

As you journey to the cross this week, I hope you are not full already. Start by asking Jesus to empty you of everything, your self and worldly attachments, so that the Spirit can fill every nook and cranny of your being.

This will position you for life after Lent. Your generosity will reflect an abandonment of your agenda, your pride, and your ambitions. Father, empty us. Spirit, fill us. Do this we ask in the name of Jesus. Amen.