A Year with Jesus: 'The Power Behind My Growing Kingdom'

Wednesday, June 3, 2020

Note from Jesus

Dear Disciple,

Pentecost came, and My church was born! The presence, power, and work of the Holy Spirit in every true disciple had finally arrived. All who truly believed in Me as Lord and Christ, who turned their hearts to live for Me, and who were immersed in My name on that great day were given the gift of the Holy Spirit to live in them and to work through them (Acts 2:36-41).

When I first told the parable found in the verses below, the Holy Spirit had not yet been given to My followers (John 7:37-39). In the parable, I talk about the mysterious power that causes seeds to grow and produce fruit. The similar mysterious power in My people is the Holy Spirit. Beginning on Pentecost, all of My followers have been given the gift of the Holy Spirit. So for the next few days, I will share some great things about the Holy Spirit and power. It is this power that you see at work in the book of Acts and the power I want to see at work among My followers today.

The result of the Spirit's presence in the hearts of people who truly believe is astounding. The small band of 120 disciples (Acts 1:13-15) soon became 3,000 people (Acts 2:41), then more than 5,000 people (Acts 4:4), and the number of disciples "increased rapidly" (Acts 6:1; Acts 6:7 NIV). To an outsider, the power may seem very mysterious — similar to the power behind the growth of the seeds in My parable. However, if you know Me and My promises, you know that I promised this power to propel My people, grow My church, and enlarge the kingdom of God (Luke 24:49; Acts 1:8).

Verses to Live

Today's Scripture is very short, but it contains a parable packed with meaning and promise. In this parable, I talked about a farmer who doesn't see or understand how seeds grow into plants. This mysterious power at work in plants is similar to the power of the Holy Spirit that works in My disciples to grow the church. I send the Holy Spirit to empower My people to do My work and accomplish things for the Father. These things are greater than My disciples could imagine because the power behind these great things in the book of Acts is the Holy Spirit.
Jesus [teaching His disciples in a parable]:
Here is what the kingdom of God is like: a man who throws seeds onto the earth. Day and night, as he works and as he sleeps, the seeds sprout and climb out into the light, even though he doesn't understand how it works. It's as though the soil itself produced the grain somehow — from a sprouted stalk to ripened fruit. But however it happens, when he sees that the grain has grown and ripened, he gets his sickle and begins to cut it because the harvest has come.
(Mark 4:26-29)

Response in Prayer

I thank You, almighty and loving Father. I thank You, Lord Jesus, my Savior. I thank You, the ever-present and powerful Holy Spirit. Thank You, God, for Your power and presence available to me through the gift of the Holy Spirit. I pray for the Holy Spirit to bring renewal to Your people and strength to Your church. I pray for the Holy Spirit to bring a resurrection of hope to those who struggle, doubt, and grow weary. I believe, dear Father, that the Spirit can re-ignite us to do great things for our world and to honor You as the King of all nations. In Jesus' name, I pray. Amen.

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About This Devotional

A Year with Jesus is a daily devotional written to help us all reclaim Jesus as the daily Lord of our lives.

'A Year with Jesus' is written by Phil Ware.

All scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from The Voice™. © 2008 by Ecclesia Bible Society. Used by permission. All rights reserved.