Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Opening that gift ...

As I read through Acts 10, I observed something in particular that I wanted to reflect on. First, you have an introduction to a man named Cornelius:
At Caesarea there was a man named Cornelius, a centurion of what was known as the Italian Cohort, a devout man who feared God with all his household, gave alms generously to the people, and prayed continually to God. (Acts 10:1-2 ESV)
A rather positive introduction for certain. Simply put, a man of great faith. Not only does this man of great faith receive a solid Biblical introduction, but he also hears from a messenger of the Lord that he has been noticed:
And [the Angel] said to him, “Your prayers and your alms have ascended as a memorial before God. (Acts 10:4b ESV)
Again, not too shabby! The angel not only told him that his prayers (and alms) were received, but that they ascended "as a memorial" before the living God of the universe Himself! Clearly some type of recognition will come upon him right? Absolutely, and later in the chapter this great recognition, this amazing gift, is revealed to him:
While Peter was still saying these things, the Holy Spirit fell on all who heard the word. (Acts 10:44 ESV)

What a gift! Is there another gift greater than God Himself dwelling in us? I think not! However I think I all too often forget His majesty, and as I read Francis Chan's book, Forgotten God, I am reminded of how much I take His Spirit for granted, or worse yet, forget His presence in my daily life.
What does the Spirit do? His works are ineffable in majesty, and innumerable in quantity. How can we even ponder what extends beyond the ages? What did He do before creation began? How great are the graces He showered on creation? What power will He wield in the age to come? He existed; He pre-existed; He co-existed with the Father and the Son before the ages. Even if you can imagine anything beyond the ages, you will discover that the Spirit is even further beyond. -St. Basil the Great-
Father, may I continue to be reminded of how priceless the gift of Your Spirit is in my life. He guides me, He convicts me, He counsels me, and through Him and Your Son I can approach Your throne and we communicate in perfect loving harmony. However, may I remember that this Gift is not just for me, but is meant to be shared with others You lead my way. May I represent You best by getting out of the way and letting Your Spirit work through me and in me. Help me Father to continue to trust You more each day.

Remembering Him,
~Matthew
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