Our dog wears a puffy neck collar to prevent him from licking his paws and underarms. We’ve named it his BIP (Built-In-Pillow). To our surprise, he has grown to love his “Bippy.” He happily comes to us each time we need to put it on him. 

I’ve pondered Tempo’s affection for something that constrains him. It’s unusual to adore that which prevents you from doing what you want. If left to his own devices, however, he damages his skin. We restrain him because we love him. 

The Holy Spirit does something similar with us. His loving conviction warns us of potential dangers. He is our Built-In-Pillow, protecting us from ourselves! If left to our own devices, we would scratch every itch the world throws at us. Thankfully, we are not alone in this battle with our flesh. Jesus told His men, “And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you” (John 14:16-17).

When we reject the Holy Spirit’s conviction and pursue our sin, we neglect our calling, we limit our faith, we bind our ministry, and worst of all, we dishonor our Savior. Because we do not want these things to happen, the protection of the Holy Spirit (our BIP!), is a gift that we genuinely love and appreciate. Even through the pain of conviction and the sorrow of repentance, we rejoice because these things are evidences of our faith and our salvation. Our Bippy represents the Father’s deep love for us. 

I cannot begin to imagine where I’d be without the Holy Spirit’s guidance and benevolent restraint. I’m even grateful for the times when He has let me fail, because there is nothing so sweet as restoration nor as valuable as wisdom gleaned. 

Tempo and I have much in common: We love our Bippy!  

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