If ever there was one word used to describe the antithesis of the way most people go about their lives in this day and age, it would be this word: WAIT.
Indeed, the concept of waiting seems to be outright counter-cultural.
Based on casual observation, it would appear that there are very few people today that neither grasp or employ the significance of this practice.
We roll through stop signs.
We get agitated if the drive-thru is taking longer than it should.
We despise lines.
We sigh at the length of time it takes to download something.
We speed and drive recklessly.
We binge watch shows.
I think you get the point.
Although this isn’t reflective of everyone, it is true for many.
Patience has seemingly worn thin.
Sadly, because love is patient, that also means that love has waned.
And when love has waned, self has waxed.
Although waiting may not be the practice of most today, it is both important to and the way of the Lord.
Just before Jesus ascended to the right hand of the Father, He gathered His disciples together and commanded them to not leave Jerusalem until they received power to be His witnesses (see Acts 1:4, 8).
In other words, He wanted them to wait for the promise of the Father… the promise of the Holy Spirit.
He is the one who empowers us to be a witness for Jesus. He is the power of God. And He is the one we must be persistently asking for.
Have you ever wondered why Jesus wanted His disciples to wait?
What’s the point?
Why not baptize them in the Holy Spirit before leaving?
What does the waiting do? What does it teach?
I believe there are potentially seven things that waiting for the promise of the Spirit accomplishes in us.
1. It’s about obedience. This is exceedingly important. Will we obey the Lord in waiting?
2. It builds an appreciation for what you will eventually receive. You tend to value and cherish what you wait for.
3. It creates dependence on the Lord. I can’t receive what He wants to give unless He gives it.
4. It proves what you really want and what you really believe. Only the hungry, only those that love the Lord through obedience will wait.
5. It produces perseverance, which strengthens our character.
6. It unifies people. When we are all waiting for the same thing, we become of one mind and one accord.
7. It strengthens relationship with God. It causes us to draw near. Those that wait upon Him renew their strength… but it’s not a strength that’s in themselves… it’s a strength that comes from Him.
Let me make this point very clear: I truly believe that this is what God is wanting us to do right now.
The promise is received through waiting.
And what is that promise? “…but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.” Acts 1:5.
This is what we need. We need more of Him.
“…how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him?” Luke 11:13.
Even if you’ve been baptized in the Holy Spirit before, you need to be baptized with Him again.
Why? Because we need power to demonstrate the gospel and to bring people into an encounter with God.
We owe it to the world, guys… We need to be a witness.
Come… let us wait upon the Lord.
- Brian Connolly, Faith Like Birds Ministries
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