By Wayne Pierce
Acts 1:4-8-“And while staying with them he ordered them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the promise of the Father, which, he said, ‘you heard from me; for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.’ So when they had come together, they asked him, ‘Lord, will you at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?’ He said to them, ‘It is not for you to know times or seasons that the Father has fixed by his own authority. But 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.'”
Act 2:39-41-“For the promise is for you and for your children and for all who are far off, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to himself. And with many other words he bore witness and continued to exhort them, saying, ‘Save yourselves from this crooked generation.’ So those who received his word were baptized, and there were added that day about three thousand souls.”
From 12 disciples, to 120 praying in the upper room, to 3,000 added in one day. That would be what we call momentum. Was what they had different? Was the message of Peter that powerful? Or did they just believe what they saw?
The early movement of believers had just received the gift of the Holy Spirit and what many believe was a true Jesus encounter after He had ascended. We as believers have that same gift and may not have had a Jesus encounter. So how can we experience Jesus and see that same growth and momentum?
One way of experiencing a true Jesus encounter is by participating in a Short Term Mission trip (STJ). This can be to another part of your city, your state, your country, or what is even more valuable, a trip abroad.
When we get out of our comfortable daily routine and see both the needs, but also see needs being met, our spiritual eyes are opened. We see the work of others spreading the Gospel of love to what Peter called, “a crooked generation.” We open our hearts to receive power, and we participate in spreading that love along side those that God has called to that particular region or place. Thru this we find ourselves experiencing Jesus, by His spirit without even speaking their language, just as they did on that blessed day written about in Acts. I am not implying that going on a mission trip will have you speaking in another language. What I am saying is you will experience God in a way that only you can explain because of His spirit.
When you return back to your “comfortable daily routine” your spiritual eyes cannot remain closed. Sharing the good news of what you saw, did, and encountered during that STJ will change you, empower you, and drive you to prayer. That prayer and sharing can only lead to God moving among you (and those that went with you) in your local church. We at H2T know prayer is essential. We also know that prayer led by passion gained on mission leads to momentum. Connect with us before your next STJ so you and your church can experience momentum that leads to growth.