We’ve Got the Power! It’s Pentecost Sunday!
Happy Birthday to YOU! Today is Pentecost Sunday, the birthday of the Church. So, it is YOUR birthday, because you ARE the Church going and coming. At every birthday celebration, a gift always shows up! This day of celebration commemorates the Gift of the Holy Spirit to us. And what a gift He was AND is to us today!
Pentecost Sunday (50 days after Easter) — the day when the Holy Spirit descended upon the Apostles and others in the Upper Room. They were in one accord in one place. We, the Church, need a Pentecost today! To turn from blame and shame to Godly, courageous, bold witnesses for Christ. To become people of compassion, kindness, and love for each other. In a world of violence and cultural unrest, if ever we needed a Pentecost, it is today!
Pentecost fulfilled Jesus’ promise “to send the Holy Spirit to you!” (John 16:5-15). It launched Peter as a powerful witness for Christ. How did he go from being cowardly to courageous, from being frightened to fearless? How did he go from denying Jesus to defending Jesus? It was the power of Pentecost that made the difference in his life. And that is the same power we need in our lives if the Church is to have a positive and lasting impact upon the world. Peter was changed. (Acts 4:13)
Acts 2:41 records that Peter spoke to the crowd and 3,000 people were baptized. Power-less to power-full! And that’s what Holy Spirit does for us, too! My story is similar to Peter’s. I was weak, timid and afraid, but because of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit in my life, I weathered and overcame many storms in my life. The Holy Spirit gives me the power and confidence to share the Good News boldly and unafraid. The power of the Holy Spirit is available to anyone who is a believing and obedient Christian and who desires the fullness of God’s Spirit.
The moment we received Christ, the Holy Spirit not only came to live in us, but He also imparted the power to overcome the enemy’s tactics. “Be filled” means to allow the Holy Spirit to produce His attitudes and actions in the life of the believer. We received amazing gifts of the Holy Spirit when we received Christ and a big bushel of fruit. Galatians 5:22: “The Fruit of the Holy Spirit are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control.”
The change this world needs begins with you and me. When we point to others, there are four fingers pointing back to us. “Let there be peace on earth and let it begin in me!” Won’t you pray this prayer to be changed and empowered to be bold witnesses of God’s love through the empowerment of the Holy Spirit?
“Dear Jesus, thank you for sending the Holy Spirit. Holy Spirit, I know You live in me. I know that You are my helper, my counselor, my confidant, my comforter and my peace. I ask You to take complete control of my life. I ask for Your gifts and fruit to be evident in my life. Lord, I ask that You fill me to overflowing with Your precious Holy Spirit. Baptize me from the top of my head to the bottom of my feet – the same way You filled those in the Upper Room. I ask You for a radical transformation like the disciples had when they went from fear, anxiety, and timidity to empowered people of faith, boldness, and courage. Come Holy Spirit! Consume me! I ask this in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen!