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How to Minister to the Human Spirit

Our first encounters with ministering to the human spirit were a clumsy bundle of ignorance, good intentions and the grace of God. As we studied the Word more, our methodology became more simple and clear. Today, we present it as four steps:

  • Engage the spirit
  • Legitimize the spirit
  • Instruct the spirit
  • (Occasionally) direct the spirit

Engaging the spirit

In normal interactions between people, the soul carries on the dialogue. Our basic approach is simply to speak to the person’s spirit, calling it to attention and inviting it to come to the front.

We then speak to the soul, asking it to step aside and allow us to dialogue directly with the spirit. While this seems incredibly simplistic after some of the convoluted things we learned while doing inner healing and deliverance, it has been effective for thousands of people.

Approximately 60 percent of the people who came to our seminars this year felt a very clear response within themselves when we called their spirit to attention. They are sure that their spirit’s response is quite distinct from their usual “self.”

The human spirit does not have to be introduced or explained. When a person’s spirit responds, they KNOW it is different from the soul.

Some people’s spirit must be spoken to several times before it fully engages. One lady described it this way: “The first time you called my spirit to attention, it was as though it was coming down a long corridor to get to you. After about four weeks (of once a week phone calls) my spirit was waiting for you before you called each time.”

Although it is not typical, it is normal for a person to be able to differentiate among four distinct voices: the voice of God, the voice of the devil, the voice of their spirit and the voice of their soul.

With a little bit of training, differentiating between the last two voices becomes rather straightforward.

An individual who is experienced at ministering to people’s spirit will get a distinct response from other people’s spirits upon initial contact. Most people’s spirits do not respond immediately, but they react fairly quickly to such a basic approach. Only a few are so deeply wounded that they resist our communication.

Legitimizing the spirit

The first step of legitimization has already taken place by the time you speak directly to the spirit and differentiate it from the soul. The spirit is accustomed to benign neglect and to being lumped together with the soul. Acknowledgement is a huge thing.

Imagine two scenes. The first is of your being in the shopping mall and a close friend walks right by you, looks at you and keeps on going without stopping to acknowledge you. Being ignored is hugely hurtful and sends a message of lack of legitimacy.

In the other scene, you are in a large group, and the guest of honor whom you only know slightly goes out of his way to seek you out, greet you publicly and affirm his friendship. You feel highly legitimized by the attention. This is what we aim to do for the spirit.

The second step is to speak to the spirit about essence. The human spirit is made of light - the same kind of light that God is made of. When one candle lights another, the first candle is not diminished, and the second candle has the same kind of light as the first one. Each of our spirits was designed by God before the foundation of the world and was made from the same light that He is. That essence cannot be removed from us.

Generational defilement - as well as the individual’s sin - can represent a rather immense pile of toxic waste, but that never changes the reality that at the core of the person is the light of God, and it is fantastic in its essence. For a highly troubled soul, knowing that the fingerprint of God is still visible on their spirit is hugely validating.

At times we may also speak to the issue of authority, explaining to the spirit that it was designed by God to walk in dominion over the soul. Even if this has not happened in the person’s life, it does not change God’s original design. The spirit was designed to lead, and it needs to know that.

Instructing the spirit

The primary purpose of instructing the spirit is for it to understand the breadth of its latent abilities. Think of a five-year-old child. Little Sammy knows how to get around the house and the neighborhood. He knows how to play and to relate to his peers and his family. He has the mental capacity to learn how to read, but he does not know it.

He has spent five years asking others to read to him and has no reason to believe it will ever be different.

The genetic ability will be wasted until someone explains to him that he is capable of learning how to read, then begins to instruct him in that skill. If you take an aboriginal child with a brain that is equal to Sammy’s, that child will not automatically learn how to read. Until someone tells him he can (and teaches him how), he will remain illiterate. The great brain potential is wasted.

The central truth about the spirit is that it was designed by God to heal and nurture the soul. This happens when the spirit is legitimized and comes to a place of dominion.

Our CD set "Developing Your Spirit" is a series of 49 instructive blessings designed to teach your spirit what it was made by God to do. This CD album is available in our "Free Audio" section.

(Occasionally) directing the spirit

By directing the spirit, we mean telling it what to do. Other than telling a person’s spirit to seek direction from the Holy Spirit, I recommend not being directive. It is too easy to fall into witchcraft (control), and we often cannot see the bigger picture that God has for timing and sequence of events in our lives.

For example, when I am legitimizing a person’s spirit I will tell the spirit that it was made to be in dominion over the soul. I will NOT tell his spirit, “So go take charge.” God knows when the person will be ready for such an upheaval in the inner world. It does have to take place at some time, but we are not the ones to determine when that time is. After explaining the proper positioning to the spirit, I will say, “God will help you grow and develop, and in His time, He will tell you when and how to initiate the changes to make things right.”

Bigger Picture

This is an extremely condensed version of the 8-hour seminar on Nurturing Your Spirit which was released on DVD in January 2007. We teach deeply on the theological foundations of each point, and do one or more live demos. We then answer questions from people in the audience. The seminar on DVD will give you a very adequate set of tools to begin working with those around you, even if you have never considered direct ministry to the human spirit before. Click here to purchase the DVD set.

Arthur Burk


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Click here to download "How to Minister to the Human Spirit" as a PDF file.