Blog / The Promised Gift

By Kim Prothro
Sunday, May 19, 2024

 Pentecost  Spirit  Trinity
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When I think back to the day of my salvation I remember two things: the courage it took to walk down the aisle in my tiny, small-town church, and the prayer time we had at the pastor’s house afterward. It was evening and the room was dimly lit. We sat in a circle and I felt the unity and comfort of being with others. The pastor began to pray and the power in the room was palpable.

I don't remember what the pastor or anyone else prayed, but I will never forget the awareness I had of the power of the presence of the Holy Spirit. It was as if we were surrounded and overshadowed by the peace, love, and power of God. As I look back on that experience, I realize how it solidified my faith to trust and to believe in God's power and His presence with us.

The other day, as I read John 15:5 (NLT), these words caught my attention: “apart from me you can do nothing.” I had read this verse many times, but suddenly I realized why Jesus had to leave. The disciples needed the Holy Spirit so they could “obey [his] commandments…go and produce lasting fruit…[and] love each other,” (John 15:10,16-17, NLT).

Jesus had already told them they would “be (his) witnesses…to the ends of the earth” (Acts 1:8, NLT); but that would only happen after the power of the Holy Spirit came (John 15:26). Jesus couldn’t be with all of them everywhere they went. They were all going to have different assignments and be in different locations. So He told them to go to Jerusalem and “wait for the gift (the) Father promised” (Acts 1:4-5, NIV; Luke 24:49).

This is what we celebrate on Pentecost, that amazing event described in Acts 2 replete with powerful images. There was a sound like a violent blowing wind, tongues of fire, and the disciples spoke in foreign languages so those who had gathered in Jerusalem for the Feast of Shavuot could understand the Good News in their own language. Peter preached a sermon that pierced their hearts and 3,000 came to faith in Christ that day. It was astounding, bewildering, and a fulfillment of what Joel prophesied: “I will pour out my spirit upon all people” (Joel 2:28, NLT).

But what does it mean for you and me?

Today the gift of the Holy Spirit comes more quietly, yet His power is the same. Ephesians 1:20 tells us it is the same power that raised Christ from the grave, which is absolutely mind boggling. We can’t comprehend it on our own. That is why Paul prayed for the Christians in Ephesus that they might be able to “understand the incredible greatness of God’s power” (Ephesians 1:19, NLT).

When the Holy Spirit comes into our lives He:

        - guides us into the truth (John 16:13)

        - helps us when we don’t know how to pray, and intercedes for us (Romans 8:26)

        - gives us the strength to live differently (Galatians 5:6)

        - gives us overflowing hope (Romans 15:13)

        - changes our desires (Galatians 5:24)

        - gives us life (Romans 8:10)

        - and the ability to call God our Father (Romans 8:15)

        - as well as the ability to testify about Christ (John 15:26-27)

        - transforms us and makes us more like Christ (2 Corinthians 3:18)

        - produces fruit in our lives as we walk with Him (Galatians 5:22-23)

        - strengthens us inwardly, and gives us the power to grasp Christ’s amazing love (Ephesians 3:17-18)

I was only 13, when I came to faith in Christ; but the Holy Spirit has been with me continually to convict me of sin, cleanse my heart, and remind me of the truth over and over. My relationship with God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit has grown deeper over the years. I know, without a shadow of a doubt, that I am loved and forgiven, and that God has a purpose for my life and yours.

Maybe you’ve never thought about the fact that you have a relationship with the Holy Spirit. You pray to God and talk to Jesus, but consider what Scripture says.

We can grieve the Spirit, quench the Spirit, and need to keep in step with the Spirit (Ephesians 4:30; 1 Thessalonians 5:19; Galatians 5:25). The Holy Spirit is with us in such an intimate way that He knows when we are troubled and don’t know how to pray, so He helps us in our weakness...[and] intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words (Romans 8:26-27, ESV).

If you and I lived together and went everywhere together, pretty soon we would know each other intimately and be able to tell when the other was troubled or struggling. That is how intimately the Holy Spirit knows us.

Have you ever had a moment when you caught a glimpse of truth and suddenly understood something you had not before? Or were you ever able to connect several truths together and see the thread of grace that is woven all through Scripture so clearly that it took your breath away? That was the work of the Holy Spirit leading you and revealing truth to you (John 16:13). It is something you can pray for, as David did: Lead me in your truth and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation; for you I wait all the day long (Psalm 25:5, ESV). 

Have you had a thought or a nudge that you followed through on and discovered it was perfect timing—exactly what was needed? That is God working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what please him (Philippians 2:13, NLT).

Or maybe you are suffering and need the will to keep going. The Holy Spirit is ready to give you the “endurance and encouragement” you need (Romans 15:5, ESV).

The Holy Spirit is the power of God at work all throughout the Bible. He is a creative, active force in our lives as well—drawing us to God, walking with us, strengthening us, leading us into truth, transforming us into the image of Christ, and working through us so He receives glory and honor.

Romans 5:1-5 says, Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God. Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us (ESV).

These verses exemplify the beauty of the Trinity at work in our faith and in our lives. Meditate on them and let the truth of what you have been given sink deep into your heart.

Today, as we celebrate Pentecost, consider your relationship with the Holy Spirit and rejoice in the Trinity. May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope (Romans 15:13, ESV).

Kim Prothro

Kim fell in love with Jesus and studying God's word in the eighth grade. That eventually led to a dream of attending seminary which she did after her children were grown. She graduated from Dallas Theological Seminary in 2013 with a Masters in Theology and was part of the original group of women who founded Womenary in 2008. She has been a past professor for Womenary and is currently the Director of Soul Care at Living Well Holistic Counseling and Wellness Center. Kim can be contacted at
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