By Gail Marsh
You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth (Acts 1:8 ESV).
Have you ever tossed a stone into calm lake waters? Or watched what happens when a drop of rain falls into a puddle? Even the smallest break in the water’s surface will cause ripples to form. Beginning at the point of disturbance, a circular wave will immediately surround the point of impact. Each ripple continues outward from the center, ever enlarging itself as it moves faster and faster. Many more circular ripple waves follow the first one, making the stone’s impact felt far from where it originally hit the water. A single small stone or water droplet can affect a very large area on the water’s surface.
Can you see the ripple effect described in today’s Bible verse? The disturbance begins in Jerusalem, spreads outward as it takes in the area of Judea and then Samaria to eventually cover the entire world! What could have happened to cause such widespread effect? The origin of the ripple must have been cataclysmic!
Actually, it began with a haphazard parade. Jesus entered Jerusalem, knowing what lay ahead, but his friends and followers never could have guessed that the coming days would make a tsunami-size impact throughout the entire world. Passersby mistakenly thought everything ended at Golgotha as Jesus cried, “It is finished!” (John 19:30 ESV). But three days later, the earth’s foundations shook as life overcame death. Forever!
News of Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection surged throughout Jerusalem. Disciples and apostles carried the Gospel message out from Jerusalem to Judea and Samaria and beyond. And the ripple of forgiveness and eternal life still flows! It laps at your feet now and it comes to you with a declaration by Jesus himself: “You will be my witnesses.”
With these five words Jesus gives your life purpose and direction. You were made for this! What’s more, Jesus gives you a wonderful promise: “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you.”
The Holy Spirit enables and invigorates your witness. He gives you courage, wisdom, and strength. The Spirit brings you to opportunities and makes your words of witness effective. Riding along on the ripple waves, you are propelled by the Holy Spirit, and by grace, you get to participate in the work God created for you to do.
Prayer starter: Dear Jesus, pour out your Holy Spirit on me. Help me see myself as your witness when . . .Editor’s note: Today’s devotion is slightly adapted from Woman of God: Wonderfully Made.