4 While he was with them, he commanded them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait for the Father’s promise. “Which,” he said, “you have heard me speak about; 5 for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit in a few days.” 6 So when they had come together, they asked him, “Lord, are you restoring the kingdom to Israel at this time?” 7 He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or periods that the Father has set by his own authority. 8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come on you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”
Caleb and Mike grew up together as best friends. Neither of them knew the Lord, but they were inseparable as pals up until they graduated from high school. Caleb stayed in their hometown for community college, while Mike got accepted to a big university out of state. Mike not only learned a ton in his freshman year, but he also received Jesus into his heart for the first time. As Mike grew in what it meant to have a relationship with Jesus, he knew he would never be the same.
When his freshman year was over, it was time to head back home for the summer. But Mike was nervous about what his best friend would think of his new “relationship status” with Jesus. So Mike played it cool with Caleb. He never mentioned his heart transformation, because he didn’t want Caleb to think anything weird about it. But it didn’t matter. Caleb could already see a change in Mike. Mike seemed more peaceful, joyful and easy-going than before. Without Mike even saying a word about what happened to him that freshman year, Caleb was curious. “Why do you seem so different?” Caleb asked him. Mike had no option but to tell of his experience.
Acts 1 picks right up after the resurrection, and we see Jesus talking to His disciples and giving them instructions for what to do next. Jesus knew the disciples were going to deal with a lot of trials. So what did He do? He reminded them that they could be confident and bold and that they were already witnesses for the gospel. Acts 1:8 says “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come on you and you will be my witnesses…to the end of the earth.”
The word “will” stand out to me, because it’s as if Jesus didn’t give them an option. Jesus was conveying that in the same way they saw Him share the love of the Father, heal the sick, cast out demons and melt hearts of stone, they were going to be able to do the same through the power of the Holy Spirit.
Much like the time in Acts, we still see people who are lost, hopeless, sick and afraid. However, also just like the time after Jesus’ ascension, we have been given the same power from the Holy Spirit the disciples had. In our modern-day American society, it’s hard to imagine we have “power” like this—but that’s exactly what the enemy would want you to believe. The enemy wants you to feel powerless, helpless and alone.
Don’t listen to that. YOU have been given power through the Holy Spirit to intercede, to share the gospel, to fight, and to carry out the will of the Father in any circumstance. Deep down, Mike really wanted to share how Jesus changed his life. You don’t have to be a pastor or one of the disciples to ask for this power—you already have it.
Questions to Ask Yourself
- What lies have I been told by the enemy that are keeping me from being a vessel for the Holy Spirit to use?
- What situation am I involved with now where I can begin to pray and ask the Holy Spirit to intervene with me in?