“They were all filled with the Holy Spirit.”
Few people have experienced the Holy Spirit in a rushing wind or tongues of flame that lead to speaking in a foreign language one has never studied. When we hear about people “speaking in tongues,” unless we were raised in a tradition that readily accepts even the idea as a possibility in this time period, we usually shrug it off as someone’s fevered imagination. And when we read Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians we may gloss over chapter 12’s acknowledgement of spiritual gifts, especially those we have never personally encountered before.
But it doesn’t matter to God whether we believe what the author of Acts says the disciples did or what Paul says about spiritual gifts or not. God promises to send the Holy Spirit, his personal helper, to each of his followers to aid us in doing what God has called us to do. As the writer of Acts says about the disciples in verse 2:4, “They were all filled with the Holy Spirit.” God didn’t ask each of Jesus’ followers if they believed the Holy Spirit would give them special abilities, nor did he ask them which abilities they wanted. As they sat together to pray and accepted God’s leading in their lives, God filled each of them with his Spirit so that they could do what he called them to do.
As you read Acts 2 1-13 and 1 Corinthians 2 10-16, 12 1-11, try to remember a time in your life in which God’s Spirit was working in you to help you follow God’s call. Then, download the Questions and Reflections and take some time to work through them before engaging in the Meditation Activities below.
Find a quiet place, preferably in nature, and take 10 to 20 minutes to contemplate what the above image means to you as it relates to the reading of Acts 21-13 and 1 Corinthians 2 10-16, 12 1-11, then choose as many of the following suggestions as you would like to express your thoughts and feelings outwardly.
- In your journal, write a free-flow of thoughts and descriptive images as they come to you regarding the picture and its relationship to God sending the Holy Spirit to help you in whatever God calls you to do.
- Identify a gift or talent you have or think you may have. Find ways to develop your gift, either by classes, workshops, books or some other means, then watch to see where God might want to use you.
- Take time each day to quiet yourself and listen for God’s whisper.
- Decide on your own creative way to express your feelings and thoughts regarding the picture and its relationship to God sending the Holy Spirit to help you in whatever God calls you to do.
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