Let Holy Spirit light the way, Griffin tells Chapel

Dr. Tim Griffin uses a photo of the inside of Disneyland’s Space Mountain to demonstrate what the Holy Spirit can do in our lives.

Story by Rick Vacek
Photos by Ralph Freso
GCU News Bureau

The cool thing about Disneyland’s Space Mountain roller-coaster is that you can’t see what’s really going on.

It seems as if you’re hurtling through space rather than a dark building. For some people, and especially their stomachs, that’s better than having a bird’s-eye view of the twists and turns and heights and drops.

Life is a little different. Even when you can see everything, you really can’t see anything, a point Dr. Tim Griffin illuminated in his Chapel talk Monday at Grand Canyon University Arena.   

“Life is much like Space Mountain,” said GCU’s Vice President of Student Affairs, Dean of Students and University Pastor. “You wait for something great to happen. You finally get close to that next stage. You climb into that little rocket and it takes off.

“You graduate. You met her. Whatever it is. And life is going great, but you’re really not sure what’s happening and what God is doing. The only way you’re going to understand your life sometimes is when the Holy Spirit turns on the lights and gives you a whole different view of what’s going on.”  

Griffin had an enlightening experience on Space Mountain when his “rocket” stalled, and Disneyland workers had to turn on the lights to see what the problem is. It gave him a whole new perspective of the ride … and a perfect vehicle for his spiritual message about our relationship to the Holy Spirit.

“To understand God,” he said, “you need to understand the Holy Spirit.”

Griffin told Chapel on Monday that to understand God you have to understand the Holy Spirit.

And the Spirit reveals a loving God, the one Paul explains in Griffin’s favorite Bible verse, 1 Corinthians 2:9-10:

However, as it is written:

“What no eye has seen,
    what no ear has heard,
and what no human mind has conceived” —
    the things God has prepared for those who love Him.

These are the things God has revealed to us by His Spirit.

Right after that verse, in 1 Corinthians 2:10-13, Paul explained to the deeply troubled church in Corinth how the Holy Spirit works:

The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. For who knows a person’s thoughts except their own spirit within them? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God.  

What we have received is not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may understand what God has freely given us. This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, explaining spiritual realities with Spirit-taught words.

Griffin encouraged his audience to have big expectations of God. All he had to do was point to his own life for guidance.

The final song, with the words “Spirit come, Spirit come” and led by Bella Rea, fit perfectly with Griffin’s message but was chosen by what must have been divine intervention, he said.

He didn’t grow up as a Christian. His only “plan,” which he suggested wasn’t a plan at all, was to play baseball.

That didn’t work out, but God had much bigger plans for him.

“The way Jesus unfolded my life over these years has just been incredible – how amazing His goodness is,” he said. “And here I am, in the last few innings of my baseball game, so to speak, my professional life, and I get to hang out with a bunch of great college kids. It’s awesome.

“I mean, how good is this? You know how many people want my job? And they should want my job! It is a great job! To come every day to a place like this, where I get to interact with people like you, is a reflection of God’s goodness to me.”

The Chapel batting order was changed because the Worship team picked two songs, unbeknownst to Griffin, that fit his message perfectly. That’s why the musicians came back onstage after he was finished and closed with “Spirit come, Spirit come.”

“That was all God’s doing,” he said later. “We never talked about my message. It just worked out that way!”

Another example of how the Holy Spirit turns on the lights.

Contact Rick Vacek at (602) 639-8203 or [email protected].

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  • To watch the full Chapel service, including the music of the Worship team, the announcements for the week and Dr. Tim Griffin’s talk, click here.
  • Here's a slideshow of Monday's Chapel.
  • Next Monday: Musical Worship Chapel with worship team from Faith Christian Center in Phoenix

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Bible Verse

How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know Him. (1 John 3:1)

To Read More: www.verseoftheday.com/