What Are We Devoting Ourselves To?

The Day of Pentecost is upon us this year on May 31. Each year we pause to celebrate the birthday of the church and the day when the Holy Spirit was made manifest in powerful ways in and through the followers of Jesus as recounted in the second chapter of Acts. It is a day to remember that the Holy Spirit continues to work in and through the followers of Jesus today in small and mighty ways and to pray for God to revive and renew the Church through the power and presence of the Holy Spirit. It is indeed my prayer that the Day of Pentecost is a beautiful celebration and that Holy Spirit once again moves with power in and through followers of Jesus the world over.
But perhaps even more important than the activity on the Day of Pentecost is what happens next. In Acts 2:42-47 we read about what the followers of Jesus were up to after this glorious day: “They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching, to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread, and to prayer. … They sold their possessions and property and distributed the proceeds to all, as any had need. Every day they devoted themselves to meeting together in the temple, and broke bread from house to house. They ate their food with joyful and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. Every day the Lord added to their number those who were being saved.”
Not a one of us has escaped being significantly impacted by the COVID-19 Pandemic. Our life has been interrupted in ways that would have seemed unthinkable just three months ago. But in light of Pentecost and the biblical account of the activity of Jesus’ followers that took place in the days afterwards, I can’t help but to pause and ask the question, “What are we devoting ourselves to?” If an account were being written in the coming months about the activity of Jesus’ followers in the summer of 2020 in light of COVID-19, what would be written about us and our devotion?
It is my hope and prayer that in spite of social distancing regulations and other challenging restrictions, followers of Jesus today will once again be known for our devotion to the same activities as recorded in Acts 2. Wouldn’t it be great if the story told about the church in the days ahead is one of awe and wonder as to our devotion to our faith, our remarkable care and concern for those in need, and our joy in the midst of the pain? What else shall be written about us in these days ahead? Empowered by the Holy Spirit, may we devote ourselves to gospel activity in the world around us.
Pastor Bryce Formwalt is the Director of Mission Growth for LCMC Texas District and Program Director of Harvest Workers, an online ministry training program (learn more at www.harvestworkers.net). Residing in Georgetown, Pastor Bryce is available to coach congregations on mission. Feel free to contact him with any questions or comments: 512-942-7776 or bryce@lcmctexas.org.
© 2020 Bryce J. Formwalt, All Rights Reserved. Reprinted with permission.
June 2020

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