I Don’t Feel the Holy Spirit in My Life

Question from a Site Viewer
I accepted Christ years ago (at least I think I did) then I wandered about for a few years. I didn’t stop believing; I just stopped living like a Christian. But recently God has drawn me back and I’ve been reading His Word and praying regularly. I’m not perfect, but I have given Him my life this time. Here’s my issue. I can’t feel the Holy Spirit at all. I wonder if He’s even with me. It’s like He’s just not there. I pray constantly but still feel alone. I went to church but they were all hypocrites so I quit going. I want to go to a Seventh Day Adventist church.

Tim’s Answer
Thanks for writing. You desire to feel the presence of the Holy Spirit in your life and His leading, but as you say “He is not there.” Let me give you some encouragement on this point. Scripture does not command us to feel the Holy Spirit or His leading. The Spirit is not like that. Like the wind, we can see the effect of the Spirit of God and we might feel that effect in our lives, but we do not necessarily always feel Him or His leading. When God came to Elijah in 1 Kings, God was not in the wind, or earthquake, or fire, but in the still small voice (1 Kings 19:11-12). While there was the sound of a mighty wind at Pentecost (Acts 2:2), there is no statement that there was an actual wind that was felt, or anything that was felt. But there was the effect of the Spirit. The same is true in Acts 4:31 where the place was shaken and they were filled with the Holy Spirit. But again, nothing is said about what they felt.

Rather, the thrust of Scripture is that we love God with all of our heart, that we love our neighbors and the brothers and sisters in Christ, that we hope in His coming, and that we serve one another (Galatians 5:1-16). These are the things that are our duties in this life. We should focus our lives in these areas as Scripture directs us to do. We should practice the Christian graces that are found in 2 Peter 1:5-7. In doing these things, we need to pray about everything (it is a command of Scripture as well as an invitation from our God). And we need to seek Him always. But, having asked for His guidance, we need to trust that He will answer even when we do not perceive His leading. So much of life is based on this trust.

There are times when I sense that God is telling me to do something. If what I am perceiving lines up with Scripture, then I try to do what I am perceiving. And I have seen God greatly work and confirm His leading in such moments. But for me, the vast majority of time I ask for His leading and His presence and trust that He will answer my prayers and then I proceed to live out my life to the ability He has given me as am ambassador of His. Having asked, I trust that He is directing. So I seek to be kind to people, to love the brothers, to be engaged with others, to meet needs, to have time to commune with the Father, to take time to worship God and praise Him. In living out my ordinary life, I have seen His leading over and over as I look back. Sometimes, I have even felt it at the moment, but not usually. Always, I count Him to be true to His word that if I ask, He will be present.

The body of the believer is the temple of the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 6:19-20). This is a truth whether we perceive it, feel it, or not. The response in that passage is that we should glorify God in our body and in our spirit and not sin. The proper response to truth is to order one’s life in response to that truth.

I can tell you that there were times when the saints of old did not feel God was with them. If you have ever read Lamentations 3, you will understand and come to know Jeremiah’s strong faith when his feelings were totally contrary to the true facts of God’s presence. That is what faith is about. We believe that God exists and that He will reward those who diligently seek Him (Hebrews 11:6), even when our feelings are contrary.

So, my encouragement to you is not to seek to feel the Holy Spirit and His leading, but to seek His presence and guidance in prayer, trust that He will lead you, and then be faithful in doing what He has asked us to do in Scripture. As you seek His presence and seek to live out His will as revealed in Scripture, He will be present with you and empower you to do His will.

A great practice is to use some of the great prayers of Scripture in your prayers. Seek the things that the apostle Paul sought for the believers in the many letters he wrote. You will see that Paul never prays that the believers will feel the presence of the Spirit, but he does pray that they may know the exceeding greatness of His power and that they might be filled with the knowledge of His will and that they might walk worthy of Him.

If you seek to walk worthy of God, drawing near in prayer, and asking for the help of the Spirit to serve others, you will live a life that is a blessing to God and to people, and the Spirit of God will abide in you.

I am concerned that you do not have a church that is encouraging you in your walk with God. I know that there is no perfect church, but there is a need to find other believers who can encourage, challenge, and help equip you in walking with God. Further, there is a need to find other believers to whom you can carry out the “one another” commands of Scripture. So I encourage you to make it a priority to find others who share a desire to follow God.

You state that you are looking for a church that worships on Saturday. There is nothing in the Bible that states what day the body of Christ should get together for worship. Hebrews 10:25 indicates only that we should get together even more frequently as we see the day of Christ approaching. Accordingly, I would not be so restrictive in seeking fellowship with others who love Christ. If there was a body of Christ that met together on Tuesday evenings, or Friday mornings, I would join with them. Or I would meet whenever my schedule allowed me to do so. I am not sure why Sunday does not work for you, but I note that in many larger churches that ordinarily meet on Sunday, there often is a Saturday evening service as well. I note that from Biblical times the church gathered together on the first day of the week. See our article, Why I Do Not Place Myself Under the Sabbath. Whether you meet on Saturday, Sunday, or any other day of the week, I think God makes it clear that He desires us to be in fellowship with other believers. I encourage you to do so.

May the Lord Jesus and His Spirit guide you in this matter.

In His service,
tim

25 thoughts on “I Don’t Feel the Holy Spirit in My Life

    1. Ron

      I often feel the same. One thing that works for me is …

      “Be still, and know that I am God. -Psalms 46:10 ESV

      Prayer does not have to involve words. Quiet your thoughts, get in touch with what you are truly feeling about your life. Then, silently, without words, offer it up to God as a spirit to Spirit communication. You don’t need to put into words what you are feeling; by offering up your sincere feelings, whether it be praise or a need, it will be received and appropriately responded to – Spirit to spirit.

      7 “ And when you pray, do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do, for they think that they will be heard for their many words.
      8 Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him. -Matt…

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    2. nick raetsel

      I think we should be able to know we have the holy spirit, but I’m not sure. Another issue I’m not sure about is seventh day upholding. While I absolutely believe we can worship as often as we like, the sabbath has significance. It’s not like this ONE of the TEN can just be ignored. It didn’t end at the cross, but was an eternal thing, that means forever. It’s not about a specific day to worship on, but following the Father’s commands, following His instructions, which is where we most often fail. Worship whenever, every day:) but keep the sabbath holy as instructed in those 10 commandments which didn’t become obsolete at the cross at all, but remain just as significant as ever. Shalom!

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  1. Kori Emily Butterworth

    I am very weak and brittle in my faith. God has only just called me back. Things are changing in my life. A bad relationship ended and I found a great church. I havent felt God yet but I am in the right place. I have walked into churches that didnt feel right and got off the God tangent because of this. A man from my church (Who at one point was very strong in his faith) shared today that whilst he was in the wrong church, he felt so far from God that he had plans to suicide. Maybe while you feel you are not sensing God’s truth, pray for him to lead you to a Church that you feel a sense of belonging in. You may have strongholds in your mind that seperate you from God and need a supportive environment to grow strong in.
    All the best.

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  2. elizabeth

    goodday and shalom i ve similar problem. This min i find myself praying fervently and strong in faith and another time am weak in prayer and depress in spirit.there re time i will wake up in d middle of d night to pray and when i go bk to sleep i began to ve night mare or sex in the dream. So all this deplete me seriously and my faith waver and felt i dont ve holyspirit in me and around me.again i cant find a good church to go i see everybody trying to outdo each other even d pastors and minister re d same i no i ve a calling but just cant find it. …i hope u can find d right ans fore cos am confuse

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  3. Linda

    Hi Friends, I hope I can help. If you accepted Jesus as your saviour, accept one thing as a truth – you do have the Holy Spirit as your guide. Rom 8:11 We tend to be so busy in our lives that we do not take the time to calm our souls and feel the Holy Spitit. God can not be rushed and the Spirit will reveal himself if we slow down, spend time with God and ask God to make you sensitive to the presence of the Spirit. Also one sure way to feel the Holy Spirit is to praise God, there are many beautiful songs on youtube, “I worship you”, I love to love you,” “el shaddai”, “as a deer”. Spend some time singing these songs in worship to God – I do not feel the Spirit while worshipping but some time after. Worship & Praise is essential

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  4. Francisca

    I don’t go to church either. I found my spiritual growth has improved tremendously since I go to the world wide BSF Bible study fellowship. The ladies who go there all have the same purpose as mine- study God’s words in detail. They have no other purposes so no hypocrites.

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    1. Seth Ben-Archer

      I am going through the same sort of thing! I went away from God for awhile and have come back. God never forgot about me and there was always the voice in my.mind to stop what I was doing a.d come back to Jesus Christ. Well I did follow that voice and I have been forgiven so the Holy Spirit is there it never left.

      I asked the Lotd for a annointing and baptism of the Holy Spirit. I too want to feel the overwheleming feeling of drunkbin the spirit. I have to be patient and wait for when God decides is going to give it to me. I know sometimes we got to be prepared to have patience understanding because it’s God’s will not ours

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  5. Billy

    Hi. My name’s Billy, I’m 19 and I’m having sort of the same problem.. well.. multitudes of it.

    Countless times I’ve invited Jesus into my heart, however, I feel nothing! I also can’t differentiate between the voice of God and what my own brain is telling me, I want to KNOW that I am saved, I want God to take control of my life, I’m TIRED OF FEELING EMPTY!! What do I do? Please help!

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    1. Mike

      Billy, bless you brother I know you feel empty but I promise you are not. Do you have a bible and have you been studying the NT? “Man can’t live on bread alone but on every word from the mouth of God!” -Mat 4:4

      I am here anytime you need someone!

      37 All those the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never drive away. 38 For I have come down from heaven not to do my will but to do the will of him who sent me. 39 And this is the will of him who sent me, that I shall lose none of all those he has given me, but raise them up at the last day. 40 For my Father’s will is that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in him shall have eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day.”- John 6: 37-40

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    2. Justin

      Hi Billy. Go to knowimsaved. Com
      You must realize that prayer doesn’t save you. Christ dying on the cross saves you. Don’t look within yourself for confirmation, look to what He has already done. It’s about trusting Him. Believing Him.

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      1. rhonda

        Thanks, Justin, really appreciate your words. i have wondered those same things, why I don’t feel the Holy Spirit, I pray and read the Bible and seek a stronger relationship with Our Lord Jesus Christ, but strayed for many years, into New Age and Eastern Religions. Felt called to get a Bible and start going to church six months. Found a wonderful church, but my faith feels shaky, sometimes. I am not feeling the Holy Spirit with me and it has concerned me.

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    3. Tim

      Billy,
      If you are still reading this please follow are heed. Even when we don’t feel the power of God he is there! Take time and read the book of Job, a great book. Job lost everything in his field and did’t understand why; although he kept asking God why. Job responded to all of it like this: “although he slay me, yet will I serve him”. What powerful words based on fait; those who preserve to the end in faith will be victorious. The world has no answers, only Christ and the grace that he provides. When we feel empty is the time to keep praying “although he slay me, yet will I serve him”
      Love in Christ
      Tim

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  6. nae

    I feel what u feel billy but I’ve done some messed up stuff and when I say messed up I do mean horrible so idk if can ever since God.

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    1. Naneuleta Saffold

      Nae trust me I get it. I had a horrible past before accepting Jesus and I didn’t feel like a new creature especially since some habits worsened after being save but I knew it was a trick of the enemy to make me believe I wasn’t saved. We will Never be good enough. That’s why we have Jesus as our advocate. Repent and press forward. No condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus. Be encouraged.

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  7. Vernie

    Hi there please don’t lose heart if you have invited the Holy Spirit into your life then he is with you. As you continue to spend time in Gods presence and live according to the word you will be able to discern between the spirits and definitely know who the Holy Spirit is. He will give you a sense of peace that is really remarkable.
    When we first begin our relationship with God we are still getting to know Him and having ‘milk’ food as the bible describes. He begins to change our hearts and He helps us to live holy lives, you will then move on to the ‘solid’ food as your relationship grows and you will be able to discern his presence much better. Don’t give up. I had more to say but limited words. God bless u guys.

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    1. William Sleezer

      When we come to understand Romans 8:1 “So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus.” Understanding this mean past, present, future you are never condemned. There is no more reason for shame to be apart of your life. Once this truth find it way to your heart you have become a person of faith.

      Now start living out you faith by refusing to speak condemnation on others, forgiving others as Christ forgives you. This will be hard at times. You will need to start praying – “Father help me not condemn or harbor unforgiveness toward this person. Strengthen me by your Word and Spirit. Bye the Jesus Centered Bible and start reading it asking God to reveal himself to you more and more.

      Start there all.

      God Bless

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  8. Pat Kelly

    The lord works in mysterious ways. I say this because I have experienced God so much that I’m confused and feel so unworthy. I have very a hard time praying in public and only when alone yet I saw the Holy spirit in the form of a clear wind as it left a church when an attending preacher tried to take over. I hav had open visions 4 time all related to none spiritual things. I’ve had prayers answered that were from other people for me. the most important, my son to get off drugs. I prayed a very simple prayer for God to reveal himself to me and help me pray two months ago and within two week the Spirit came on me at a hardware store and I had a chance to pray for a man but I had to pray alone after asking him if he minded. God is good

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  9. John Edgley

    I don’t think I understand the holy spirit I was baptized when I was in high school my freshman year shortly after 9/11 but I had thought it meant to be saved I’m 30 now and I’ve looked over my life and I am deeply saddened about how I had lived my life. I’ve prayed and asked for forgiveness of my sins and repented. I really didn’t know back then about the holy spirit or what baptism truly meant until now. Sometimes I feel like it might be too late and at times I wonder how could God allow me to be so evil up to this point? Can someone help me understand?

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  10. Johnson

    I knw and strongly believe dat d holy spirit exist, I tell frnds about d holy spirit cos am always blessed wen ever my pastor teach abt d holy spirit, bt I can’t find myself feeling the Holy Spirit. Pls Dnt knw wat to do, cos most times wen I pray I get distracted that I might even forget sometimes Dat I was praying.

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  11. Sally

    To those of you who feel empty and have extended the invitation with no results, PLEASE do not give up. I had asked many many times with no answer until a friend asked me what was my intention when i invited the Holy Spirit..i said salvation, heaven.His response was “You asked just because you wanted something from him”? I believed, I feared, but I couldn’t say i loved as i didn’t know him. He invited me to a bible study group of the gospels. Through his word i came to know him and love him and when we studied the crucifixion it filled me with such empathy i broke down, so many tears ..through my sobbing i asked again and i was filled with such joy, such love..i was forever changed with a heart filled with pure love and empathy for…

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  12. Alabi Oludare

    I think I have blasphemed the Holy Spirit. I can’t pray in tongues. Many at times when there’s a call for people who want to be baptised in the Holy Spirit, I go out also. But I don’t get baptised rather I speak something I know within myself is a lie so as to fool the pastor.

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  13. Jen

    I struggled with this for years & years. My whole life, really, as I was raised in the church. My dad was a true man of God & I was blessed to be able to witness the struggles in his walk, the work God did in him & through him. I knew he had the real deal with God but I never felt anything. No amount of praying, church, scripture made me /feel/ God. My dad died young & I was angry & I rebelled hard for years. Eventually, I came back full circle, knowing I wouldn’t make it without him. I started thinking about God’s heart & being truly obedient & trusting him. I don’t know why exactly it happened then, but it did. The Spirit came into me & I promise it is very real & so precious. Don’t give up. Don’t lose hope. Keep seeking. It’s…

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