(Day 1 of the 9-day Pentecost Fasting and Prayers)
Scripture Reading: Matthew 28:18-20
Today all users of Daily Strength Devotional will kick-start the nine-day fasting and prayer Pentecost novena, in anticipation of fresh outpouring of the Holy Spirit as it was on Pentecost day. Christians throughout the ages have confessed their belief in the Holy Spirit, but yet the Holy Spirit has often remained a shadowy figure in the lives of many Christian. Why are we embarking on such a spiritual revival prayer? It is simply because we believe in the Holy Spirit, we know that we need Him in our lives and churches; we know that without Him we can’t do anything good for Jesus. We know how important the Holy Spirit is to us as individuals and as a church. We spent forty days to prepare for Easter, because we know how important Easter is to us. Following the example of the Apostles, we are starting a nine-day fasting and prayer (novena to the Holy Spirit) to prepare and wait for the power from above. Without the Holy Spirit the church will be a social club or even “a mortuary”, that is, there will not be life in us. We cannot be Christians without the Holy Spirit. Without the Holy Spirit, we are useless as Christians. According to Andrew Murray, “Men ought to seek with their whole hearts to be filled with the Spirit of God. Without being filled with the Spirit, it is utterly impossible that an individual Christian or a church can ever live or work as God desires.” Let me paraphrase E. M. Bounds thus: “What the Church needs today is not more machinery or better, not new organizations or more novel methods, but men filled with the Holy Spirit— men of prayer, men mighty in prayer. The Holy Spirit does not flow through methods, but through men. He does not come on machinery, but on men. He does not anoint plans, but men, men of prayer.It is not a new doctrine we need but a new fire; not new maxims about the Spirit but a new outpouring of the Holy Spirit. We need the Holy Spirit for He empowers the believer to step outside his comfort zone to do extraordinary acts of faith for God. Being filled with the Spirit involves transforming our minds to the mind of Christ as we engage in spiritual activities. Walking in the Spirit leads to a sense of peace and joy, as we partner with God in His glorious plans.Scripture says that He empowers us with the ability to have joy, peace, and hope. (Romans 15:13) He teaches us what is ultimate true spiritual wisdom and reality according to the Scriptures. (1 Corinthians 2:13) The Spirit leads us, giving us wisdom and direction as to how we should live and what we should do. (Romans 8:14) He helps us to be able to express our prayers to God, interceding for us despite our weakness. (Romans 8:26) He also helps us to know for sure that we are indeed children of God, testifying in our hearts to that fact. (Romans 8:16) The work of the Spirit is clearly a critical component of the life and ministry of a believer.
Since you believe and know the importance of having Him active in your life, join us in a prayer mood to call on the Holy Spirit as we end this reflection thus: “Come Holy Spirit I need You, Come Holy Spirit I pray, Come in fullness and power, Come in Your own special way.”
MASS: WHITE Acts 18:9-18; Ps 47:2-3.4-5.6-7 (R.8a); Accl. Mt 28:19a, 20b; Jn 16:20-23a ST. PHILIP NERI, P. (MEMORIAL)
1. Sing with us: “I will make my heart Your dwelling place…I will build Your throne in my heart…. come FATHER come SON come HOLY SPIRIT…come and have Your way in my life.” (3x)
2. Ask the Lord to forgive you for the times you have neglected the Holy Spirit.
3. “O Divine Spirit, renew Your wonders in our time as by a new Pentecost in the name Jesus.” (7x)
4. “Lord, I want more of Your Holy Spirit. Activate aspects of Your work that have been dormant in my life. Bring me into a deeper relationship with You. Give me greater zeal to be a witness for You and live a life of prayer, love, and service. Pour out Your Holy Spirit on the whole Church! We need You, Holy Spirit! Come and rekindle the fire of Your love in my heart in the name of Jesus. Amen.”
7. Take the prayer of “Spirit of the Living God” in the Amen: It is Done prayer booklet.
Exercise: Take the “Daily Consecration to the Holy Spirit” prayer in the Amen: It is Done prayer booklet.
Meditation: John 16:7