June 3, 2020
Pentecost Alive – Slow!
June 3, 2020
Acts 16:6-9 – 6 They went through the region of Phrygia and Galatia, having been forbidden by the Holy Spirit to speak the word in Asia. 7 When they had come opposite Mysia, they attempted to go into Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus did not allow them; 8 so, passing by Mysia, they went down to Troas. 9 During the night Paul had a vision: there stood a man of Macedonia pleading with him and saying, “Come over to Macedonia and help us.”
While God answers some of our prayers with a “No,” God answers others with “Slow.” The nudge of the Holy Spirit is, “Slow down! Be patient! You’ll see the complete answer in time.”
A friend saw a lady in tears after worship. Asking her what’s wrong, she said, “My mother received baptism today.” After inquiring why this made her upset, she said, “After praying for more than twenty years for my Mom to accept Christ, I almost gave up praying for her.”
After losing her child to a rare form of cancer, Esther continuously prayed for the healing of her grief. After praying for two years for healing and peace, she was about to quit praying, right at the time her neighbor lost a child in an automobile accident. She told her pastor that she didn’t believe God caused her child’s cancer or the death of her neighbor’s child, yet, Esther said God gave her peace (Fruit of the Holy Spirit) and healing through the Holy Spirit’s guidance to be a friend to her neighbor.
As Paul had to wait for God’s timing to go to Macedonia, God’s answers to our prayers may be, “Slow down. I will answer your prayers at the right time in a manner that is best for everyone. Be patient (Fruit of the Holy Spirit).”
QUESTIONS FOR THE FIELD
- Looking back on your life, think of a few times in which you had to wait for God’s answer.
- Are you praying for something at the moment for which you do not yet see an answer? Are you patiently waiting for the answer to come?
FAMILY FIELD TALK
- Discuss what it is like to wait.
- Discuss times in which waiting produced better results.
- Answer the above Questions for the Field.
Lord, Jesus Christ, please strengthen our patience as we wait for your answers to our prayers. While waiting, help us grow in trusting you to watch over us. In your gracious name, I pray. Amen.
FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT AND PENTECOST CHALLENGE
For the duration of our sermon series, we are offering daily prompts for applying the wisdom from the scriptures to our everyday lives. Each week focuses on how we can encourage those around us, resulting in our bearing fruit! This week we are focusing on making Pentecost come alive through our prayer life and following the Holy Spirit.
This week’s scripture is Acts 2:1-21 and we will be practicing Lectio Divina with it. Lectio Divina is an ancient prayer practice that means divine or sacred reading. It is a way of meditating on the scripture and allowing God to speak anew through the words of scripture. There are a number of ways to practice Lectio Divina; one method is listed below.
First pray: Loving God help me to hear your word for me today. Amen.
Next, read the passage Acts 2:1-21 aloud slowly. Pause for a moment.
Read the passage aloud again slowly. Listen for a word or a phrase that stands out to you.
Read the passage aloud again for a third time. As you do, reflect on your word or phrase and think about why God might be revealing those words to you.
Meditate on your word or phrase and listen for what God might be inviting you to do.
Who is the Spirit inviting you to pray for today?
To learn more about the Fruit of the Spirit challenge, click here.