Welcome to my first ever book review. Wow, did I get off to a great start with this inspirational teaching on living a spirit formed life by getting back to the foundations of our Christian faith!
This is the first book of Pastor Hayford’s I’ve ever read, and since I don’t believe in coincidence, this book in my hands at this particular time is a divine appointment. In the last few years, I’ve been drawn toward the simple Gospel message and the lessons of the early church. As I go along my Christian journey, I hear a God-whisper – “Go back to the basics of Jesus’ message.” In that respect, Pastor Hayford’s revision of Living the Spirit-Formed Life is beyond timely in that he focuses in on 10 basic Christian disciplines.
If studied as a list of 10 disciplines to be accomplished in the flesh by checking a list or working harder, this would be a religious exercise book. However, far from it, Pastor Hayford wisely emphasizes our full reliance on Holy Spirit to be our teacher and counselor for guiding us into the practice of the 10 disciplines, which will ultimately result in a vibrant and more intimate relationship with our Lord.
Quote from Prologue, pg.15 When the power life is linked to the disciplined life, we will have overthrown any misinterpretation of what being filled with the Spirit means; and we will have reaffirmed the timeless lifestyle that has always been foundational to renewal, revival or anointing – true Spirit fullness. We will have entered a new era of the Church where lines of separation – differences over Pentecostal experience, evangelical solidity, charismatic passion and fundamentalist purity – will gradually disappear.
Personally, I adopted this book as a daily devotional for two weeks, spending a day or so in each chapter. As a result, I feel stretched and refreshed. The daily challenge to begin reading God’s Word with a prayer of yielding and asking to be taught by Holy Spirit has been transformational in itself.
Principle: Committing to Hear God’s Voice, pg34 To read and study God’s Word is to lay the foundation for all understanding and growth as a disciple of Jesus Christ. However, the Bible is a living Word that has not been given to us solely for information, analysis and education. God wants to speak to each one of His children – to teach and correct, to lead and direct, to keep and protect. For this to take place vitally and continuously, the believer needs to learn to hear His word within the Word – to receive the prophetic intent of the Holy Spirit breathing truth into our hearts in order to transform our lives
I love the word picture of being so filled with Holy Spirit as to give my life form. Just as a crumpled piece of latex in a doctor’s office takes the shape of the hand placed inside of it, my life, as I purposely ask to be filled with Holy Spirit and intentionally seek to be taught by Him, will take on the form of Jesus’ likeness being developed in me.
Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit. 2 Corinthians 3:17-18 esv
Thank you, Pastor Hayford, for yielding yourself to the truth of Holy Spirit and for sharing in your book the lessons you’ve learned on your personal journey with Jesus.
To wrap it up, I’ll close with a quote from Pastor Hayford in the Epilogue, pg 228 In the last analysis, our spiritual life is one of simple moment-to-moment dependence upon Jesus. Alone! However beneficent acquired disciplines will become, settling and advancing your walk with Him, no method, system or discipline will ever substitute for our just being His.
Living the Spirit-Formed Life by Jack Hayford Chosen a division of Baker Publishing Group
I received a free copy of this book and in exchange, I am providing an honest review from my perspective.
If you are interested, I recommend you buy your copy here.