Have you ever played in a raffle or something similar and noticed at the back or bottom of your playing piece in fine print was the phrase “Must Be Present to Win?” These games remind me of a story that happened hundreds of years ago just after Jesus had risen and returned to Heaven.
During His last few days on earth, Jesus instructed His followers to wait for the gift of the Holy Spirit. “Don’t leave Jerusalem until the Father sends the gift!” Jesus warned.
After Jesus ascended to Heaven, His disciples followed His instructions and waited. One day they met to wait and pray. Suddenly a loud, rushing noise filled the room. Then, flames of fire rested on each one there. “And everyone present was filled with the Holy Spirit” (Acts 2:4 NLT).
The gift of the Holy Spirit was not just promised to the apostles of the early church, but was promised to every believer. This gift can be yours too! You only need to ask and receive Him. Here are a few tips to keep in mind while you wait for the Spirit.
Must be present to win. The gift of the Holy Spirit is ours for the asking, but we need to be present to win. It’s not enough to just pray to receive the Spirit, but we need to make our- selves ready to receive Him. When we wait for Him, prayerfully and expectantly, He will come.
Don’t wait alone. Sometimes our biggest gains happen when we work with someone
else. This journey through life is tough. We need a partner to walk with us, to help us stay accountable to our calling. Don’t work alone. As the wise man said, “A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.” (Ecclesiastes 4:12 NLT)
Expect the unexpected. The apostles knew God’s presence had come when there was a roaring noise and flames of fire. On the other hand, Elijah saw great wind, an earth-
quake, and fire; but, God revealed Himself to Elijah in a still small voice. When you ask God to reveal His presence, open your heart and listen so that you can recognize Him when He comes to you.
Share the Gift. The gift of the Holy Spirit is not meant to be hoarded, but to be shared. The early church immediately upon receiving the Gift, used His power to share the good news of the gospel with everyone who would listen. As you receive God’s Spirit, set to work right away and share His good news.
Shared by Shawna Henry, Associate Family Pastor, Piedmont Park Seventh-day Adventist Church