14 Ways to Enjoy the Holy Spirit’s Presence in Corporate Settings

To have the privilege of enjoying the Holy Spirit’s presence, we must first understand that Jesus left Him on earth to be the leader, the guide, and Comforter to the Church. The more we know about the Holy Spirit; His role in assisting the Church, and His role in our personal lives, the greater we will see His manifestations in our individual lives, as well as when we come together as a group–corporately.

When we come together in a corporate setting, for corporate praise, worship, prayer, preaching, bible study, or whatever the purpose: The scriptures says where there is two or more, gathered together in the name of Jesus that the Holy Spirit is in the midst. But before He will manifest Himself (demonstrate that He is present), there must be a certain atmosphere created for Him to show up.

I’ve listed fourteen things I’ve learned during my almost thirty years in ministry on how to create an atmosphere for the Holy Spirit to move in our services. This relates to corporate praise and worship–not private devotion.

  1. Before beginning any service, there should be one person who is recognized or designated by the group as the leader of praise and worship. This is important because every time God’s people come together, someone must take the lead. The Holy Spirit honors authority and leadership. Why? Because it was ordained by God the Father. The Holy Spirit understands His place within the Godhead and He works within the authority God has given Him. He will not usurp His or any one else’s authority. He seeks no praise or worship for Himself, only that believers will praise and worship God the Father and Jesus Christ, the Son.
  2. Recognize that anytime God’s people (2 or 3) gather together in the name of Jesus, He is automatically there in the midst. Even though He is there, He will not automatically manifest Himself unless He is asked to do so.
  3. Once we realize He is present, we must recognize and honor His presence.
  4. Invite Him to come into the service and ask that His will be done in the service. This is necessary because the Holy Spirit is a gentleman. He is very sensitive and will not stay any where that He is not welcomed or wanted. He will not force His will on any person. He will show up but will not manifest Himself; only if He is asked or invited to do so. If He becomes grieved, He will leave. That’s why there are spiritual gatherings where no matter how spiritual one may be, you may not be able to sense His presence. That’s because the right atmosphere has not been set for Him to manifest Himself. If the Holy Spirit becomes grieved by the leadership or by what is going on in that setting, He will leave and you will not sense His presence. Again, He always shows up when two or more believers come together in the name of Jesus, but He will not always manifest Himself; for the reasons I have indicated.
  5. Once the stage is set, by inviting Him into the service, everyone should begin to praise and worship Jesus Christ together. The Holy Spirit wants us to exalt the name of Jesus; that name that is above every name. Unless there is a praise and worship team or a worship leader designated to lead the service, the one who will lead the Body into corporate worship may not have emerged, as yet. He or she is worshipping as part of the group–the corporate body.
  6. In the beginning of praise and worship; before sensing the presence of the Holy Spirit; you may sense dryness in your words. The words being spoken to the Lord may feel lifeless; like the Lord is not hearing you; you may feel like your words are not going up to heaven but are just bouncing off the ceiling. This is because your mind and carnal thoughts need to be cleansed and your carnal thoughts must be transformed into spiritual thoughts. Do not give up and do not despair at this point because this is the phase where you are moving from the flesh/carnal realm into the spirit realm. Sometimes, it may take a while for the group, or even the leader to break through this realm into the spirit realm, and get on one accord. Just keep praising and worshipping God, and exalting the name of Jesus. Keep talking to Him and telling Him how much you love Him; how wonderful He is and so on. This is where a strong praise and worship leader, a minister, or someone who has been fasting and praying is very important. He or she will keep pressing through the fleshly/carnal realm and into the spirit realm with words of praise and thanksgiving to God until there is a breakthrough where the presence of God begins to illuminate the lead worshipper, and the other worshippers. At this point, every one who has tapped into the spiritual realm begins to sense that God is hearing their words of praise and thanksgiving.
  7. By now, the praise and worship leader should have taken the lead and began to lead all others into songs, psalms, words of exhortation, prayer, prophecy, and so on. Now, everyone should be encouraged to talk to and to express their personal feelings to the Lord. As an example, you might be instructed to tell Him how wonderful He is; how marvelous He is, how much you love Him; how you depend on Him and without Him you can do nothing. If you don’t know what to say, follow the words of the worship leader, or you can prepare a head of time, by reading the Psalms of one of the most famous worship leaders of all times–King David. Write down some of the words, statements, and songs King David, the shepherd, the warrior, or the servant, used to worship and magnify the Lord. You may just want to read words of expression to God, directly out of the Bible. The purpose of this is to get your mind on spiritual things and in touch with God. In general worship, the Holy Spirit will respond when we sing from our hearts, songs to God and Jesus-not songs about Them. It is very important that we sing to Him in praise and worship, and not about Him. This will bring His presence into a room quicker than anything. We see this when David sang and played his harp before King Saul. The anointed music brought the presence of God and drove the evil spirits from Saul’s presence. David was a minstrel and this is the work of a minstrel.
  8. During this time of corporate praise and worship, the anointing of the Holy Spirit will begin to rest upon one person in the group (this may or may not be the praise and worship leader). Whoever the anointing falls upon, that person should take the lead in continuing to praise and worship by leading the group as far into the Spirit of oneness, as possible. The objective is to get everyone on one accord. The leader may change from one person to another, during the course of general praise and worship, or it may be one person throughout the entire time who takes the lead and brings the group into the spirit of oneness. All of this is done in unity…decently…and in order and without confusion.
  9. When the group has moved from the carnal or fleshly realm into the spirit realm, everyone will be on one accord and should be sensing or feeling the presence of the Holy Spirit. Again, this sensing of His presence occurs through personal praise and worship, by telling the Lord how much you love Him: in general, just praising Him with personal words of love, gratitude and admiration, or by singing songs to Him and not songs about Him. One by one, as the group senses the presence of the Holy Spirit, that’s when pure praise and worship begins to take place, and the Holy Spirit’s presence gets stronger and stronger. At this time more and more people will begin to sense His presence.
  10. Once the group is on one accord, pure praise and worship is now going up to the throne of God – to God the Father. In John 4:23-24 Jesus said, “The hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.” Hopefully, every one in the group is now sensing the presence of the Holy Spirit on some level. Pure praise and worship is now going forward. The presence of God/the Holy Spirit should be strong at this point. This level of praise and worship will continue until the Holy Spirit begins moving upon the worship leader, or the minster to shift from corporate praise and worship to another direction in the now spirit-filled service. At this time one person in the group–the pastor, apostle, elder, prophet, evangelist, teacher, musician, or so on, should be anointed to take the lead and begin to flow in the Spirit through continued praise, worship, songs, prayer, or some other manifestations of the Spirit.
  11. When the group is on one accord that’s when the Holy Spirit’s presence is the strongest. So, the greater the unity in the group, the stronger the presence of the God the Holy Spirit. The more divided the group; the weaker the presence of the Holy Spirit. If there is lots of bitterness and contention among the group, it’s very unlikely that you will sense His presence in a tangible way.
  12. When the presence of the Holy Spirit is strong in a group, and almost everyone is sensing the presence of God; He begins to search the people’s hearts for faith. When the He finds faith, He will begin to move upon the person with faith for him or her to ask God for whatever is on their heart. That person or persons will begin to sense the personal ministry of the Holy Spirit. The stronger the group’s faith, the greater the manifestation of the Holy Spirit will be both corporately and individually. As the Holy Spirit begins to minister personally to those in the service there may be manifestations of joy, shouting, dancing, weeping, kneeling in worship or so on. If there is corporate faith for a certain need, the Holy Spirit will begin to inspire someone who is anointed to minister in that area. The Holy Spirit may begin to move upon one person or persons in the group, based on their individual anointings (abilities). That’s when one or more of the nine gifts of the Holy Spirit may begin to operate: The gifts of divers tongues, interpretation of tongues, prophecy; the gifts of the word of wisdom, the word of knowledge, the discerning of spirits; the gifts of faith, working of miracles and healings may begin to manifest. These are the nine gifts of the Spirit (1Corinthians 12:1-11).
  13. The Holy Spirit manifests Himself through the nine gifts of the Spirit based on the knowledge and maturity level of the believers present. If pure faith, and dependency solely upon God is demonstrated, He will work miracles regardless of the maturity and knowledge of the believers. He is hindered from the greatest manifestations if there is unbelief and doubt in the group. The greater the doubt and unbelief, the less He will manifest Himself. The more faith and knowledge of the Word of God is present, the greater the manifestation of His Spirit and Presence, and the greater the signs, wonders, miracles, and answers to prayer.
  14. He responds quickly to praise and worship that exalts Jesus Christ; and particularly to anointed music that is played and sang to glorify God and not the one singing or playing the instruments.

There are too many church services where the Holy Spirit’s presence is not welcomed or not understood. As believers in Christ, we should welcome His presence in our midst–after all Jesus said He would not leave us here comfortless but was going to send the Holy Spirit to carry on His work after He ascended back to heaven.

Source by Dorothy Bracy Alston