And while staying with them he ordered them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the promise of the Father, which, he said, “you heard from me; for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.
In the church calendar, we are in that between time – after the Ascension and before Pentecost. Before he ascended into heaven, Jesus told his disciples to wait in Jerusalem for the promise of the Father, the baptism of the Holy Spirit. He even gave them a timeframe: "not many days from now." (A little vague, but better than soon, or someday, or even 'in the fullness of time'!)
Perhaps you’ve felt the anxiety, anticipation, and frustration of waiting. Waiting for Christmas to come. Waiting for Amazon to deliver your package to your door. Waiting for people to leave the store so you can have your turn to shop.
Waiting for this time of waiting to be over. Waiting for freedom and life to once more return to the fullness you yearn for.
I wonder if the disciples felt something similar – waiting for the fullness of life to return. And what a full life they had had! They had experienced the miracles of Jesus during his lifetime. They had lost Him to death on the cross and the grave for three days. Then they had felt the elation of His resurrected presence and power with them once more. Now, having witnessed His ascension, they were left without him, again.
This time, however, the community of Jesus seemed more assured in their waiting. They spent their time preparing for the future work ahead. They called a new member to their group. They dedicated time to prayer. They stayed in Jerusalem together and waited. They trusted that Jesus would send much needed help. And He did. The Holy Spirit soon arrived!
We are all waiting – for the end of this pandemic, for answers to our prayers, for clear guidance on how to move forward, for the return of Jesus.
Here's the question: How will you wait? With prayer, preparation, and thanksgiving for the new life that is coming? With joyful hope and anticipation? With praises to God for His grace and encouragement to those who do not know the joy of the Holy Spirit?
Wait in a way that others will want to be part of. Wait in a way that points to the future God is preparing for you.
God bless you!