"Do not leave Jerusalem until the Father sends you the gift he promised, ..." (Acts 1:4 NLT). These were Jesus' words to his closest followers. Now we understand why. When John the Baptizer came, he spoke of one who would baptize in the Holy Spirit (Mark 1:7-8). Soon after Jesus ascended back to heaven, the kingdom of God would break into the world with fresh power. In the kingdom, the Holy Spirit is given to every true follower of Jesus. The early disciples stood on the edge of Pentecost and the beginning of a new movement of God that would sweep up all sorts of people into his kingdom. And we are part of that great movement. We, too, are filled with this same Holy Spirit. Jesus still calls us to live out the good news of God's kingdom in our world by the power of the Holy Spirit... and to do it now!
Father, thank you for your plan: the call of Abraham, the leadership of Moses, the heart of worship in David, the faithfulness of the prophets — all who worked, led, and spoke through your Spirit and pointed to your great work to redeem the world and create a people who reflect your character and compassion. Through the power of your Holy Spirit, please form us — please form me, those I love, and all of Jesus' disciples — into the people who live your will in the world.