Focal passage: Acts 1:4-8, 12-14
The Holy Spirit empowers us to spread the gospel.
If you ever need me on a Friday afternoon, you can find me collapsed on my classroom floor in a heap of exhaustion. You see, I teach math to teenagers, and as much as I love my job, there are many days I can barely stand up and drive home. The duties, the paperwork, the meetings – it can all be overwhelming.
Just last week, as I pondered the events that had filled my days, the Holy Spirit convicted me.
I was allowing my job to consume me, and not once had I even considered sharing the gospel.
My first response was an excuse. I am tired, Lord. I can’t fit anything else into my days. I have no more energy to start another conversation or listen to another person’s problems.
And yet, in that moment, the Lord reminded me that I was exactly right. I don’t have the strength or the power to spread the gospel.
To share Christ, I must rely on the power of the Holy Spirit. This dependence on the Holy Spirit has always been Jesus’ plan for the church. In Acts 1, when Jesus speaks to His followers after His resurrection, He commands them to share the gospel, but He also promises the Holy Spirit will come and empower them.
Jesus explains that after receiving this power, they are to be His witnesses “in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth” (Acts 1:8). In other words, these followers were to tell others in their own communities as well as in distant lands that salvation comes only through Jesus Christ.
I don’t know about you, but there are days and even weeks when I never even consider asking the Holy Spirit to empower me to be Christ’s witness.
I believe the lie that I can succeed in my own strength, and I end up falling flat on my face.
What a difference it would make if we learned to rely on His power instead of ours as we share the hope of the gospel with those around us!