“And, being assembled together with them, commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father, which, saith he, ye have heard of me.” Acts 1:4
“But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.” Acts 1:8
Looking back a few years, I remember Harvey Camp in New Brunswick, a week we looked forward to every year. Meeting up with friends we didn’t often see; participating in the choir; spending precious moments in the prayer room in the mornings; and listening to great preaching in each service. Missionaries on furlough inspired us with stories from their respective fields. It was just a wonderful time. But then came the last day, and we had to say goodbye for another year. That is when sadness settled in.
The disciples had been with Jesus for three and a half years. He had tried to tell them over and over that eventually, He would be leaving them. But as they stood and watched Him ascend into the heavens, I am sure that sadness settled down on them. They were not ready for Him to leave, knowing they would not see Him again for a while.
Jesus had told them that when He left, they were to go to Jerusalem and spend time waiting because He would send them the Comforter He had promised. Along with the eleven there were many others who made their way into Jerusalem and gathered in the Upper Room. They were not sure what to expect. The Bible does not give us a lot of details about the days they spent there. We know they were praying, but I am sure that they also spent time discussing all the teachings of Jesus. It was a time of preparation before they started their ministry of spreading the Gospel to the whole world.
Romans 12:4-8 “For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office: So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another. Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith; Or ministry, let us wait on our ministering: or he that teacheth, on teaching; Or he that exhorteth, on exhortation: he that giveth, let him do it with simplicity; he that ruleth, with diligence; he that sheweth mercy, with cheerfulness.”
We all have a part to play in the kingdom of God. We all can receive the same power that the group received on the Day of Pentecost. We are all commissioned to spread the Gospel. To be successful in this, we spend time in prayer and studying God’s Word, preparing ourselves for whatever He asks us to do.
A great man of God once quoted this: “Time spent to sharpen the sickle is never spent in vain.” Waiting on God equips us for the ministry He has planned for us.
Prayer Jesus, thank you for your Holy Spirit that you have bestowed freely upon us. Help us to wait on you and be willing workers in the harvest field.
Devotion by Anne Johnston