“And now I will send the Holy Spirit, just as my Father promised. But stay here in the city until the Holy Spirit comes and fills you with power from heaven.”
Luke 24:49 New Living Translation
Waiting can be a difficult thing, especially when there is a job to be done. Sometimes, though, it is necessary. After His resurrection, Jesus was preparing His disciples to continue His mission once he had ascended to be with His Father again. He promised He wouldn’t leave them alone to fend for themselves, though. He was going to send the Holy Spirit to live within them to give them the power they needed to continue His work. The first thing they needed to do was wait in Jerusalem until the Holy Spirit came to fill them.
The longer version of this dialogue found at the beginning of Acts shows that the disciples still had the idea in their head that this was all about restoring the greatness of the Kingdom of Israel (Acts 1:6). Jesus reminded them that it wasn’t in their power to know the details of the final fulfillment of the Kingdom of God. In the end, it probably wouldn’t look like anything they were imagining. Their mission and the power they were being given was the power to carry His message and His way of life to the far reaches of the globe. They were going to spread a subversive Kingdom that would change the world from the inside out. The first step in that process, though, was to wait in Jerusalem until the power of the Holy Spirit came on them and changed them from the inside out so that they could fully grasp what type of Kingdom they were called to build.
There are times in our lives when the best thing we can do is wait. We may feel nervous energy in our desire to get things done. Spending time waiting for the Spirit, though, energizes us to be able to carry out the work of the Kingdom. It can also change our ambitions to align them more with the Kingdom of God than our own agendas. Times of waiting and seeking can help us gain a clearer vision for what God desires us to do. It’s now always easy to wait, but sometimes it’s the best thing we can do.
Jesus, we need Your power to fulfill Your mission in our world. Help us to take the time to wait for Your power when we need it before we set out on mission.