The Spirit and preparation1
“Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about. For John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.”
- from Acts 1:4-5
Jesus knew that his followers needed a big gift if they were going to tackle an impossible mission.
They would be pressed to the edges of their capability. They would be pressed but not crushed, persecuted but not abandoned, struck down but not destroyed. They needed something more than their good intentions and hard work. They needed God’s Holy Spirit.
God’s Spirit hovered over the face of the deep at the moment of creation. The Spirit involved himself intimately with the giving and sustaining of life on earth. The Holy Spirit stirs us to turn toward holiness when we wander from God’s good path. The Spirit of God empowered artists, guided kings, and inspired prophets. This is the Spirit that God gives his people as a gift.
As you prepare for New Year’s Eve, you know what you need to make tonight a good night. Maybe you need to stock up on champagne (or sparkling grape juice!). Maybe you need sparklers. Maybe you need ear plugs and an eye mask (the new year is coming whether you’re awake or not).
As we prepare to join God’s great mission, we need the Holy Spirit.
How have you experienced the Holy Spirit throughout your life? What experiences have you had that make you hesitant to engage with the Holy Spirit?