Sally created this week's Friday Five, posted over at RevGalBlogPals:
Part of the Ascension Day Scripture from Acts 11 contains this promise from Jesus;
you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you
will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the
ends of the earth.”
Then he was taken from their sight into the
clouds, two angels appeared and instructed the probably bewildered
disciples to go back to Jerusalem, where they began to wait and to pray
for the gift Jesus had promised.
Prayer is a joy to some of us, and a chore to others, waiting likewise can be filled with anticipation or anxiety….
So how do you wait and pray?
1. How do you pray best, alone or with others?
As a retired Baptist and a transplanted Southerner, I really appreciate prayer with others. It's not the most comfortable practice for many people in New England or frankly for many of my UCC friends, but I know there have been no more powerful moments than those when others have prayed for me while we are together, and I hope those I have prayed with would say something similar. I do pray alone, in a sort of running conversation with God, but I love praying with a partner or with a small group. I've been known to call a particular friend and pray with her on the phone. (You know who you are!)
2. Do you enjoy the discipline of waiting, is it a time of anticipation or anxiety?
I guess it depends on what you're waiting for!
3. Is there a time when you have waited upon God for a specific promise?
I had to read Sally's answers to understand how she was using the word "promise," in her case a vision she had after losing a baby that prefigured the twins she gave birth to later. So if by "promise" we mean glimpse of something we think we understand, I would say, it can be a long time! The image of being a pastor, a confirmation of call, had to be followed by school and a search process. That's natural. The vision I had of myself in a relationship again after my divorce took years to be realized, but those dreams did manifest in ways I could never have really imagined. Were those specific promises from God? I don't believe in a micro-manager, but I do believe in glimpses of the true and the possible, and I would call those divine.
4. Do you prefer stillness or action?
Considering that I am currently mourning having to sit quietly with my hands in my lap in these darned wrist guards, I guess we would have to say "action."
If ( and this is slightly tongue in cheek) you were promised one gift
spiritual or otherwise what would you choose to receive?
DEEDS OF POWER!!!! (1 Corinthians 12:28) Hands down.