Hello out there! Glad you’re back. Or if you’re new, welcome! It’s been one of those crazy, too busy, how-in-the world-can-I-do-all-of-this kind of days. Reminds me of the old show, “Home Improvement” where Tim was always saying “More Power!” Today I definitely needed more power! Maybe you’re having one of those days, too. Grab a glass of sweet tea, and find a comfy spot to relax. On these sorts of days, where can we find more power to get it all done, with a smile, and without getting grumpy?
I think the twelve disciples and the others in the company of the 120 followers of Jesus may have had the same question. They were gathered in the ‘upper room’ – a large room that had become a place of prayer for them all. They had watched Jesus die, then seen Him alive after the resurrection, then capped that emotional roller coaster with watching Him ascend under His own power right up into heaven. Talk about a wild ride, they must have been exhausted. If that weren’t enough, the government was truly out to get them, and they were fearing for their very lives. If anyone ever needed more power, it was those disciples!
Jesus had made them a promise, coupled with a condition. God does that a lot in the Scriptures. If you… then I… it’s all through the Old and New Testaments. If you will seek My face, I will be found by you. If you will obey My commands, I will bless you. If you rebel and disobey, I will bring judgement. If you repent, I will forgive you. The promise this time, though was that the “Comforter” or the “Holy Spirit” would come to them after Jesus left the earth. He would send the Spirit to them to continue to teach them, to bring them remembrance of what He taught them.
Since this had never happened in history, they had no idea what it would look like, where the Spirit would come from, or how the Spirit would be manifested. So, they did the only thing they knew to do: they prayed. They asked God to send the promised Holy Spirit. They may well have prayed to Jesus to teach them how to pray. This was uncharted territory, and they desperately needed help! I wonder what they were thinking as they prayed. Were they asking to be shown what they were looking for? Asking to be delivered from the government? Asking that their faith not fail? Asking for wisdom or courage? Asking for understanding of what they were even asking?
After 9 long days, on the 10th day, the Holy Spirit came. The Bible says He came like ‘tongues of fire resting on each one’. You can do a simple Google search for Pentecost or ‘tongues of fire’ and find artists’ renditions. I like the ones with Mary in the midst, and the disciples in various postures – some standing, some sitting, some kneeling. Some looking up to see what’s going on, some bowing in reverence – or perhaps genuine fear of something they’d never seen, and didn’t know just yet if it was from God.
“Whatever it was, it changed me forever.” I can hear Peter now. He gained a new faith, a new boldness, and new power in his words. He went from the one who denied that he even knew Jesus, to the lead preacher of Pentecost, where 5000 were added to the Church in ONE DAY. These timid, fearful, confused and exhausted disciples became powerhouses for the Lord. They left Pentecost and ended up evangelizing the known world. They went from powerless to powerful, indeed!
What about us? What happens when we need power? Where do we turn? Do we turn to our own intellect? Our friends? Relatives? Our pastor? A teacher? The writings or speaking of the latest well-known ‘expert’? When or where might we need power? With our families? Our budget? Power to simply live our lives? To witness? To overcome some temptation or sin? In the face of some tragedy? Where do we turn?
We can always turn to the Holy Spirit in prayer. We can ask Him to reveal the mind of Christ to us. We can ask Him to bring the power we need to overcome the world, the flesh and the devil. See also 1 John 2:16.
Maybe you have some vague idea that you need something, but can’t quite put your finger on it. Maybe you need to talk to someone about all this. Let me encourage you to find a pastor or a priest. They can help you sort it all out. Trust me, you can have “More Power!”