Watchman Nee was a Christian teacher and church leader in China in the 1900s. He was persecuted for his faith and spent the final 20 years of his life in prison.

I urge you to read the book Release of the Spirit by Watchman Nee. It’s one of those books it is good to read again and again. There are many reasons why it is such an important book for our walk with Christ; but one of the more important truths in the book is that it’s not about accomplishments and all the things we do, it’s about the life within us that touches people’s lives through our spirits. No matter what we say or do or how we project ourselves, we cannot hide the scent of the spirit within us. There can be an individual who takes people out for dinner and talks to them and gives them money and prays with them, but somehow, the effect does not bring about transformation in the other person. This person may be doing all these things because it is the right thing to do, or it is an expected thing to do. However, another person may do none of those things, but he just genuinely cares for others. Alone he prays and weeps for the people around him. Those around him can sense his care and love and their lives are transformed through what he does and the life within him. It’s a mystery how people can read our spirit. No matter what we say or do, they can sense our spirit and can experience the power that comes through a spirit under the control of the Holy Spirit, not self-will. The truth will bypass all our words and actions.

Our actions should be an overflow of an inner-life reality. In the new creation, God’s intention is that He may rule over the soul and the body through the spirit where He now dwells. We are told to renew our mind constantly. We are not regenerated in our body. But we are regenerated in the Spirit. And this is what The Release of the Spirit talks about. It will help you more than you may think. For you see, man’s soul consists of his mind (thinking faculty), his emotions (feeling faculty) and his will (deciding faculty). He cannot contact God with any of these. Just as he cannot touch God with his body, for God is spirit. As the material world can be touched only with the body so too the spiritual world can be contacted only through the spirit. With our soul by itself, we cannot know God and do God’s will. A clever mind has no advantage over a dull mind when it comes to knowing God. The spirit and soul are totally different. To try to know God alone through our souls is as foolish as trying to see through our ears. When we are willing to say as Jesus did while on earth, “Not my will, but thy will be done,” only then can we live as Jesus lived and experience the power and blessing that follows such a life. And those around us will know the difference. Read more blog posts from Dr. KP Yohannan Metropolitan on Patheos.