• Jill Jarrell Newsome

Lord, Send Out Your Spirit

I shared this the other day but I must share it again with Pentecost this Sunday! "When we get to Heaven and ask Moses what it was like to part the Red Sea, or ask David what it was like to slay Goliath?" They will turn to us and ask, "what was it like to have the Holy Spirit, Himself, living inside of you?" Wow! I never thought about that!

People recognize major Christian holidays such as Christmas, when Christ was born and Easter, when Christ was crucified. What about Pentecost? This is when He sent the power for us to be what He wants us to be. We would be nothing without this power! This Sunday is Pentecost which is the Christian festival celebrating the descent of the Holy Spirit on the disciples of Jesus after his Ascension, held on the seventh Sunday after Easter or 40 days after Easter. Some Christian denominations consider it the birthday of the Christian church. Before Jesus was crucified, He told his disciples that the Holy Spirit would come after him. John 14: 16-18, “And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever — the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.” Forty days after Jesus was resurrected (10 days after he ascended into heaven), that promise was fulfilled. Peter and the early Church were in Jerusalem for Pentecost. Acts 2: 1-4, “When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them.”

I love John 20: 19-22, "On the evening of that first day of the week, when the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jewish leaders, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” After he said this, he showed them his hands and side. The disciples were overjoyed when they saw the Lord. Again Jesus said, “Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you.” And with that he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit." This is what Jesus says to the disciples when He shows up to them after His resurrection. I am sure He knew how confused, sad, scared they were when He died so He first offered them peace. After Jesus showed them His hands and His side He said, again, "Peace be with you". He probably felt He needed to say it again. He knows us well!

Next Jesus tells them, "As the Father has sent me, I am sending you." We are told again in Matthew 28: 19, "Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit." And then the best part! "And with that he breathed on them and said, 'Receive the Holy Spirit.'" Jesus breathed on them and said to RECEIVE the Spirit. He knew without the power of the Holy Spirit they would not have the power to do what He was asking. The same is true for us. “Receive” is a verb, an action word defined as, “to come into possession of: acquire a gift”. We must receive this gift! Jesus can blow and blow on us but we have to receive it. Pentecost is the reason, we can be different in every circumstance because of that power.

It is traditional to wear red on Pentecost Sunday as a symbol of the joy and fire of the Holy Spirit. It is a tangible reminder of an invisible reality, and that is powerful to our imaginations. This Sunday, wear red expecting The Holy Spirit to do great things! Come Holy Spirit!