God has made us three part beings: body, soul, and spirit. Our body is the physical house in which we live. Our soul is comprised of our mind, emotions, and will. The soul may seem more abstract than the body, yet it is deeply integrated with our physiology. The intellect, emotions, and volition are all part of the amazing functionality of the human brain.
The human spirit is perhaps the most difficult part of us to define. My spirit is me – me at a deeper level than what I think, feel, and want. Thinking, feeling, and wanting are all things I do. There must be a me doing those things. Thinking, feeling and wanting are all experiences. There is an underlying me experiencing these experiences. My spirit is the deepest part of who I am.
I believe the human spirit is also functional. God is a Spirit and we were designed to be one with Him. We were designed to be connected to God as our source of life and identity. My spirit is my capacity to be joined to God. In this sense, the human spirit is like an electrical plug designed to connect to an external source of power and thereby receive what is needed to fulfill purpose. I was made to live by His life. Spirit to spirit connection with the Almighty is what makes me truly alive. Disconnection with God would truly be death. Disconnected, my spirit would be about as useful as a disconnected electric chord of some appliance in my home. Of course there are other spiritual realities to which humans can choose to connect. Dangerous indeed.
In this marvelous passage from Romans 8 Paul is talking about the role of the Holy Spirit in bringing us into an experience of Sonship. His Spirit talks to our spirit and tells us that we are His sons. We belong. We are connected. We are safe and secure. We are loved and valued for who we are. We are all longing for this kind of connection. We were made for it. A human spirit that doesn’t experientially know this kind of Father to Son connection is what some refer to as an “orphan” spirit, a spirit that is fatherless. I believe the orphan spirit is rampant in our generation.
God wants to heal the orphan spirit. The Holy Spirit wants to talk to your spirit. Picture your spirit like a branch attached to a vine (see John 15), receiving from the vine everything you need. The Holy Spirit wants to impart love to you, belonging, security, identity, provision, and value – everything a good father gives to his children. The only thing that will heal the orphan spirit is the experience of the Father’s love.
He is speaking. Can you hear Him?