If you are starving and someone places a nice hoagie on the table in front of you and you refuse to take a bite does the sandwich assuage your hunger? As John Wayne used to say, "Not likely." You have to grab that sub and shove it in your face for the food to have any effect on your pangs. Just looking at it doesn't cut it. It's not automatic. You have to choose to eat it.

Same way with salvation.

Jesus sacrificed Himself to save mankind from their sins so they could be seen as righteous by God and allowed into His presence. But, it's not automatic. It's not blanket coverage for all. You have to choose to accept that gift God is making available. The sandwich is on the table.

However, there is a cost in accepting that gift. Accepting that gift from Jesus means you have trusted Him for salvation – not any good deeds or right living you may do. That means you are to follow and obey Him.

Doing all that following and obeying is difficult. You may have your parents, relatives, friends, co-workers, bosses, and family tempt you to go back. Shoot, you will have even your own self to overcome, which will be the toughest challenge.

Listen, God knew it wouldn't be easy, so He sends the Holy Spirit to live inside every person who accepts that gift. When you are tempted, The Holy Spirit will strengthen. When you can't resist, the Holy Spirit will enable.

I know, we want things when we want them and don't want to wait. We don't want people telling us what to do. We want to take care of our problems our way and in our time. That's our way. God's way is for us to allow the Holy Spirit to guide us and help us to slow down, calm down, and wait for God to act.

If you don't believe me, believe Jesus when He spoke to His disciples: "If you love Me keep My commandments. And I will pray to the Father, and He will give you another Helper that He may abide with you forever – the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him for He dwells with you and will be in you." John 14:15-17.

I thought there was something strange in that sandwich. It was the Holy Spirit.