Here on the streets of New York City, you can buy a Rolex watch for as little as 15 dollars. As every New Yorker knows, though, these watches aren’t truly Rolexes. They are simply cheap copies of the real thing.
There seems to be a duplicate for just about everything today, but there is one thing that cannot be replicated, and that is true spirituality. Nothing that is truly spiritual can be copied. The Lord recognizes the work of his own hands, and he won’t accept a man-made replica of any of his divine workings. Why? Because it’s impossible for man to duplicate what is truly the work of the Holy Spirit alone. He’s constantly at work, doing something new in his people. There is no possible way for us to reproduce that work artificially.
This is the big mistake of modern religion. We think if we merely impart knowledge of the scriptures and biblical principles to people, they’ll become spiritual. The fact remains, though, that no person or institution has the power to produce spirituality in someone. Only the Holy Ghost does that.
Very little of the work God’s Spirit does in us can be seen. This is why truly spiritual people rarely look for outward evidence of his work. Paul says, “We do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal” (2 Corinthians 4:18, NKJV).
In the context of this passage, Paul is speaking of sufferings and afflictions. He said, “Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day” (2 Corinthians 4:16).
Those who submit to the leading of God’s Spirit, who face their afflictions confident that the Lord is producing something in them, will emerge from their crucible with strong faith. They testify that the Spirit taught them during their suffering and has been doing an inward work, renewing their spirit.
In all my years of walking with the Lord, I’ve rarely seen an increase in my spirituality unless I endured hard testings and opened myself to the Holy Ghost’s working. If we submit ourselves to God’s renewing, he will produce in us a faith and spiritual strength that cannot be copied by the world.