Preparing for Pentecost
Prayer & Reflection
This Sunday, Steph Littlejohn brings us the latest of our short video talks. Once you have watched the video, we encourage you to reflect on the bible text and join us in the prayer that follows below.
To listen to the talk click here.
Steph talked about the time when Jesus was about to ascend to heaven. He commissions his Disciples to carry on his work but first he tells them to wait.
Luke chapter 24, verses 46 to 49, verses 52 to 53 (The Message)
He (Jesus) said, “You can see now how it is written that the Messiah suffers, rises from the dead on the third day, and then a total life-change through the forgiveness of sins is proclaimed in his name to all nations—starting from here, from Jerusalem!
You’re the first to hear and see it. You’re the witnesses. What comes next is very important: I am sending what my Father promised to you, so stay here in the city until he arrives, until you’re equipped with power from on high.”…
52 And they worshiped him, and returned to Jerusalem filled with mighty joy, 53 and were continually in the Temple, praising God.
Jesus was talking about the coming of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost, which we will be celebrating next week. The disciples don’t know how long they will have to wait, but they are obedient and wait several weeks. (Pentecost is 50 days after the Passover.)
Steph suggested that we all read Psalm 51, as a prayer of repentance, every day in the week leading up to Pentecost and ask to be filled with the Holy Spirit daily. This is a way of waiting on God. Will you wait with her?
1 Have mercy on me, O God,
according to your unfailing love;
according to your great compassion
blot out my transgressions.
2 Wash away all my iniquity
and cleanse me from my sin.
3 For I know my transgressions,
and my sin is always before me.
4 Against you, you only, have I sinned
and done what is evil in your sight;
so you are right in your verdict
and justified when you judge.
5 Surely I was sinful at birth,
sinful from the time my mother conceived me.
6 Yet you desired faithfulness even in the womb;
you taught me wisdom in that secret place.
7 Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean;
wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.
8 Let me hear joy and gladness;
let the bones you have crushed rejoice.
9 Hide your face from my sins
and blot out all my iniquity.
10 Create in me a pure heart, O God,
and renew a steadfast spirit within me.
11 Do not cast me from your presence
or take your Holy Spirit from me.
12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation
and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me.
13 Then I will teach transgressors your ways,
so that sinners will turn back to you.
14 Deliver me from the guilt of bloodshed, O God,
you who are God my Saviour,
and my tongue will sing of your righteousness.
15 Open my lips, Lord,
and my mouth will declare your praise.
16 You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it;
you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings.
17 My sacrifice, O God, is a broken spirit;
a broken and contrite heart
you, God, will not despise.
Questions to Consider
1. Have you ever sensed God asking you to wait on him for something?
2. If you did what was it? Did you wait until you received it? Was your waiting passive or active? Did you feel like giving up? Was the wait worth it?
3. Jesus doesn’t send them on their mission. He tells them to wait until they are equipped with power from God. Jesus obviously knew this was vital, how important is the filling of the Holy Spirit to you?
4. How is the equipping of the Holy Spirit manifested in your life?
5. Do you feel confident to talk to others about Jesus? Has this always been the case? What is it that makes the difference?
6. Do you regularly ask to be filled with the Holy Spirit? What difference does this make to your day?