(Day 5 of the 9-day Pentecost Fasting and Prayers)
Scripture Reading: Galatians 5:18
Welcome to the fifth day of our Pentecost fasting and prayer novena. Usually, being baptized in Christ through the sacrament of Baptism bestows the Holy Spirit on us, but to grow in the Spirit or revive the Spirit, there are certain things that are necessary, let us discuss a few of them:
A Genuine Desire to be Holy: I always use the word “holy” to mean living a life pleasing to God in every possible way, not just in those matters you consider expedient; and obeying His commandments to the fullest extent that you are capable of. Holiness has to be your goal and you must be prepared to do whatever it takes to attain it, which includes a total, unwavering commitment.
Heartfelt Repentance: You have to be genuinely sorry for your sins. It doesn’t matter that you might be constrained by sin at this point — part of the Holy Spirit’s role is to take away the constraints and free you of sin, which will happen in time — but what is important at this stage is that you are truly sorry for the offences that you have committed against God and be determined never to sin against him anymore.
Honesty and Courage: Another requirement is honesty, more with ourselves than with anybody else, and the courage to face up to who we really are. Most of us put up facades for public display and have been doing it for so long. The Holy Spirit is going to rip the masks apart, albeit gently, and reveal things about you that you will not like to see. Until you are real on who you are, you may not make much progress spiritually.
Love for God: A vital requirement is a genuine love for God, translatable into action. Love for God is something that will grow as you grow in Him. It is only love for God that can help you make lots of tough decisions needed for a progressive Christian life.
Pope Leo XII, says, we ought to pray and invoke the Holy Spirit… The more a man is deficient in wisdom, weak in strength, borne down with trouble, prone to sin, so ought he the more to go to the Holy Spirit who is a never ceasing fount of life, strength, consolation and holiness. Dear friends, according to Fr. Emakpor, apart from the general programme of Christian initiation, there is need for reactivation, actualization, and sometimes adult affirmation and personal acknowledgement of the touch of the Spirit that we have received in our lives. We can receive fresh outpouring of the Holy Spirit through ardent prayer, faithful celebration of the sacraments, and prayerful study of the word of God in an atmosphere of spiritual yearning. Let us end our reflection with this powerful prayer: “Lord Jesus, I ask Your forgiveness for my sin. I turn from my sin now and thank You for the forgiveness I have through Your shed Blood on the Cross. I thank You that You have sent Your Holy Spirit to live in me, to empower me to live a life pleasing to You. Lord, I pray that You will baptize me afresh with Your Holy Spirit. Holy Spirit, I welcome You now into my life and invite Your fullness to fall on me. Please sharpen my ears to Your voice and train my eyes and heart to the truth in the scriptures. Guide me in all my ways and convict me of the sin in my life. Please equip and prepare me to carry out God’s work through my life. Please fill me with God’s love for people and reclaim all areas of my life for Jesus Christ. I give praise, now and forever, to thee Father, Son and Holy Spirit in the name of Jesus. Amen.”
MASS: WHITE Acts 20:17-27; Ps 68:10-11, 20-21 (R. 33a); Accl. Jn 14:16; Jn 17:1-11a
1. Lord, you have enriched me with the strength of your word. You have opened my mind and heart to see the wonders you have created. You have blessed me with the gift of communication to share your divine message. Holy Spirit, help me to understand the power of these gifts, and teach me to use them wisely. Bless all who use their talents to communicate the Gospel. Guide those who work in the field of communications to use their power for the good of your people. This I ask through Jesus Christ, Our Lord Amen
Exercise: Take the “Daily Consecration to the Holy Spirit” prayer in the Book Amen: It is Done
Meditation: Romans 8:11