Winning Ways - from Hillcrest Baptist Church, Austin, Texas 
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(Sermon series beginning June 26)
Hillcrest Baptist Church

The Holy Helper
by Tom Goodman
July 13, 2011

Do you remember the name Derek Redmond from Olympic history?  His story can help you understand the work of the Holy Spirit in your life.

Redmond arrived at the 1992 Olympic Summer Games in Barcelona determined to win a medal in the 400.

Derek's father Jim had accompanied him to Barcelona, and as race time approached for the semifinal 400 heat, Jim headed up to his seat at the top of Olympic Stadium, not far from where the Olympic torch was lit just a few days earlier.  The stadium was packed with 65,000 fans, bracing themselves for one of sport's greatest and most exciting spectacles.

The race began and Redmond broke from the pack, quickly seizing the lead.  But in the backstretch, only 175 meters away from finishing, suddenly Derek felt -- and heard -- a pop in his right hamstring.  He pulled up lame, as if he had been shot.

Redmond kept going for a while, hopping on one leg.  Then he slowed down and fell to the track.  At the same time, his dad, Jim, raced down from the top row of the stands.  In a moment that will live forever in the minds of millions, Jim Redmond ran out to his son, with two security people chasing after him.  Jim reached his son and wrapped his arm around his waist.

"I'm here, son," Jim said softly.  "We'll finish together."

Sixty-five thousand people cheered and clapped and cried as father and son, arm in arm, completed the race.

God isn't up in the grandstands watching us from a distance.  He's down on the track with us, running with us, assisting us, helping us, holding us.  Jesus said when he left he would ask the Father to send us the Holy Spirit.

The Spirit is how we experience God.

Unfortunately, some believers today are like those Paul found in Ephesus (Acts 19).  "We have not even heard there is a Holy Spirit," they told him.

Paul was happy to bring them up to speed.  This Sunday @ 10, you'll get a chance to be brought up to speed on this subject, too.  We're going to look at the work of the Holy Spirit upon nonbelievers and within believers.

In Luke 11:13, Jesus said, "God will give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him."  So, what are you waiting for?


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