In the following passage, the disciple Stephen, who has been serving food to widows and doing miracles of the Lord in the process, has been hauled before the religious leaders in Jerusalem who have objected strenuously to his doing all these things in the name of Jesus Christ. Stephen is “full of the Holy Spirit,” while his accusers are “resisting the Holy Spirit.”
[Stephen said,] “You men who are stiff-necked and uncircumcised in heart and ears are always resisting the Holy Spirit; you are doing just as your fathers did. Which one of the prophets did your fathers not persecute? They killed those who had previously announced the coming of the Righteous One, whose betrayers and murderers you have now become; you who received the law as ordained by angels, and yet did not keep it.” Now when they heard this, they were cut to the quick, and they began gnashing their teeth at him. But being full of the Holy Spirit, he gazed intently into heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God; and he said, “Behold, I see the heavens opened up and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God.” But they cried out with a loud voice, and covered their ears and rushed at him with one impulse. When they had driven him out of the city, they began stoning him; and the witnesses laid aside their robes at the feet of a young man named Saul. They went on stoning Stephen as he called on the Lord and said, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit!” Then falling on his knees, he cried out with a loud voice, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them!” Having said this, he fell asleep.
– Acts 7:51-60
It’s not likely that you’re going to have an encounter in life as dramatic as this. That said, the forces at work in this incident are the same forces at work in the world today. The Spirit of God is moving today and some people unfurl their sails to catch that wind and let it take them where it will, while others keep their sails furled and curse the wind for various nonsensical reasons.
(Remember that prayer is more about listening than talking. Use the words below to start yourself, but then allow time to reflect more on the Scripture above before you say the “Amen.” During that time of quiet reflection, let God shape your thoughts and wait for a sense of peace to come. That’s your signal to say “Amen” and go forth to the day.)
Lord, as I ponder Your Scriptures each day, grant that Your Holy Spirit will give me understanding of them and that I will not resist Him…(this is where you remain quiet to let Him work in your thoughts)… Amen.
(All scriptures, unless otherwise noted, are taken from the NASB.)