April 14, Tuesday

UPDATED Today’s AMI QT Devotional, written by Pastor Sam Lee who leads Catalyst Agape Church in Northern New Jersey, was first posted on December 2, 2013.  He is a graduate of University of Wisconsin (B.A.) and Biblical Theological Seminary (M.Div.).

Devotional Thought for This Morning

“Waiting on the Lord”

Acts 1:4-5

On one occasion, while he was eating with them, he gave them this command: “Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about. For John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.”

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Introduction: Once the dust of COVID-19 settles—whenever that may be—many of us will truly discover how much toll it has taken on our lives.  There will be a lot of hard work to be done and much waiting on the Lord—even as we seek God’s favor in our endeavors to rebuild. In today’s blog, Pastor Sam talks about the importance of waiting on the Holy Spirt.

An encounter with the Holy Spirit is so important to the Christian life that Jesus commands His disciples to wait for this promise. The disciples waited for the Holy Spirit because they knew they could not live the Christian life and fulfill their calling without the work of the Holy Spirit. Like many of us, I can be impatient, but when it comes to the work of the Holy Spirit, I have experienced the value of waiting.

It was in the waiting that God prepared my heart to hold the presence of the Holy Spirit. It is in the waiting that the clay in the hands of the Potter becomes a vase; it takes time for the clump of clay to be molded into a vase that can hold God’s presence and power. It is in the waiting that we learn to pray and seek the Lord. It is in the waiting God works on our character and motivations. It is in the waiting God fixes all the cracks and leaks in the vessel. I have seen vessels with cracks trying to bring the Holy Spirit’s revival but ultimately can’t hold it for too long. God is looking for vessels that can hold a revival so that it spreads to the ends of the earth.  It was in the waiting that I have come to value the person of the Holy Spirit. Please remember that the Holy Spirit is a person and not some New Age impersonal energy.

We know how to wait for things we value, but we find it hard to wait for a dollar hamburger at a fast food restaurant because it is not of much value. If the burger doesn’t come fast enough, we become angry and want our money back.  Although I have no patience when I go shopping, when I go with my wife, I can wait because I value her. It took me many years to learn that while waiting during shopping, I didn’t have to just twiddle my thumbs, but I could build relationship with my wife.

In a similar way, it is in the waiting that we build a relationship with the Holy Spirit. We talk about loving God the Father and Jesus the Son, but we need to love the Holy Spirit who is the third person of the Trinity. While waiting, why not talk to the Holy Spirit? It is in the connection that the branch is able to bear the fruits of the Holy Spirit.

Prayer: Lord, as I brace for the storm of COVID-19 to run its course, pleases strengthen me.  I will need the empowerment of the Holy Spirit to steady my trembling feet—so help me!  May I not falter even as I wait on the Holy Spirit to strengthen me.  Amen.    

Bible Reading for Today: Acts 15


Lunch Break Study

Read Isaiah 40:30-31 (NKJV):  “Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall, 31 But those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.”

Questions to Consider

  1. In what sense does the calamity of COVID-19, happening in real time, prove Isaiah’s point?
  2. What do you think “wait” means in this context?
  3. What are some things you can do while you wait for the Lord?

Notes

  1. At first, it was said that the coronavirus won’t hardly affect those young adults who are infected, that only old people and those with preexisting conditions should really worry.  But later, analysis indicated that millennials are not invincible.  For instance, “up to one-fifth of infected people ages 20-44 have been hospitalized.”
  2. The word “wait” doesn’t mean just sitting back and doing nothing until something happens, but it implies an active kind of waiting.
  3. Personal response.

Evening Reflection

green-fern-leaf-2748757When something is not happening, people use hype, manipulation, or try to force things to happen. I believe that those things hurt the movement of the Holy Spirit. In the area of prophetic gifts, healing, and the supernatural, what would be a better attitude or response when not much seems to be happening?

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