DAY 1 – A New Faith for an old Religion.
READ: Acts 1: 3-5, 8-9, 14
Have you ever been a part of something new? Or, maybe you found yourself having to press the restart button of life. 2,000 years ago, a few Jewish men and women went through a similar type of situation. They were instructed to take on an incredible mission: Start a new religion (Christianity) and make disciples of all men. Jesus knew it was a lot to ask. So, He promised to send help. And He did. Jesus also told them to stay in Jerusalem and wait for the promise–the power of the Holy Spirit. After that, they were to spread the gospel to the neighboring areas (Judea and Samaria) and then to the ends of the earth. Then, suddenly, he disappeared right before their eyes.
They’d been through the shock of His death and resurrection. One of their own had committed suicide. And now, Jesus was gone. Again. But He didn’t leave them alone. That group had obviously been through a lot. You’d think they’d say, “I just can’t take anymore. I can’t do this. You’ve got to be kidding!” But they didn’t. Verse 14 tells us that the exact opposite actually took place. They “came together in unity and prayer”. And, due to the presence and the power of the Holy Spirit, they were energized and determined to carry out the mission. And they were victorious!
How does this apply to me? As we, the family at Two Rivers, move toward an unprecedented time of transition, change and refocus, we are obeying this same call. This is the call to prayer, to unity and to make disciples of all men. During this next 20 days of Prayer and Fasting, we’ll learn about the founding of the New Testament church, discover the purpose of the church, celebrate the miracles that took place and marvel at the expansion of the gospel to all parts of the world. Following the Lord’s words, we too are called to reach our city, Nashville, for Christ. Then, we are to reach out to our neighboring areas, and then our world. The book of Acts is where we find the basis for our new mission statement: Doing whatever it takes to make committed followers of Jesus Christ.
Just like the early church, let’s pray and wait for the power of the Holy Spirit to help us accomplish this mission. This is the formula for success. In other words, this is exciting stuff that will encourage, challenge and excite all of us as to the power of the church and how God can use Two Rivers if we are faithful and obedient! With the Holy Spirit’s power and prayer, we can, and will be, victorious.
Acts 1:14 ¶ They agreed they were in this for good, completely together in prayer, the women included. Also Jesus’ mother, Mary, and his brothers. (The Message)