Fr. Kurian KollapallilJesus alerts his disciples to his imminent departure, his ascension into heaven. He doesn’t say Adieu (farewell) but “bye”(Hasta la luego)  in order to meet them again.  “I am going away, but I shall return.”  God keeps his promise to be with us always. John’s Gospel has a series of discourses where Jesus is saying goodbye to his disciples.  Jesus informs in advance all that was going to take place in His life.  He promised them the counselor to be with them always. “I will not leave you desolate, I will come to you” he said. But the disciples were afraid of being left without their Teacher. Jesus, for his part, insists that they will never feel his absence, in spite of his leaving. Up to five times he repeats that they can count on the Holy Spirit. This Spirit would defend them, keep them faithful to Jesus’ message, teach them, and remind them all what Jesus said.

Jesus told his disciples, “if a man loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him.” The abiding presence of God in the human soul is assured by Jesus. Since the three Persons of the Trinity share the same nature, where one is, all three are. But for the sake of our understanding, the Church has long attributed God’s presence within our soul especially to the Holy Spirit, the most hidden of the three Persons of the Trinity. One thing in life which we can always trust is God’s presence. God inhabits our hearts so deeply and intimately that we become the visible dwelling place of God. That’s why St. Paul said:” Do you know that you are God’s temple and that God’s spirit dwells in you?” (1 Corinthians 3:16).His living and life-affirming Presence is always with us, yet ‘”hidden” in the very things we so often take for granted.  Thus, we are invited to look for and encounter “God-with-us,” yet “hidden.”

To make us understand the indwelling presence of God with us, Paul used the common language and expressed it as if living in a house. He wrote to the Romans, “the Spirit is living in you” (Romans 8:11). Christ lives in each Christian in a two-fold way. He lives in him by His communicated Nature. Christ essentially is present in the believer as he or she puts on the nature of Christ (Romans 13:14). As the individual believes in Jesus and obeys His command, he or she is made partaker of the Divine nature of Christ. The second way the presence of God in the believer is realized from the presence of the Holy Spirit. Jesus teaches us the condition for His indwelling presence with us, namely, we have to show our love of God by keeping his word.  And this keeping of his word will be facilitated by the Holy Spirit, God’s Holy Breath. The risen Lord sent the Holy Spirit to dwell with the believers, to take abode in the believer’s body, to act in it in the name of Christ, as his proxy to manifest him personally to the believer.

The Holy Spirit possesses our inner being (Ephesians 3:16), establishes an intimate bond and imparts to us spiritual understanding and divine influence. Although we cannot see or sense the indwelling Spirit, we can see the effects He has on our lives and our actions (John 3:8). However, the Spirit can only have an effect on us and control our lives if we allow Him. The spirit draws us closer to Christ, regenerates our human spirits, convicts of sin, righteousness and judgement. The Holy spirit sanctifies , helps us in prayer, guides to all truth, teaches, comforts , anoints with Divine power, equips with His gifts and makes our lives effective with the fruits of the Spirit.

“The core of my being is the ultimate reality, the root and ground of the universe, the source of all that exists.”