Pause

Water is powerful – a necessity for life and also a threat to life when it surges out of control.

There is One who is always in the midst of the waters, bringing life every day and sustaining life when it is threatened. This same Spirit is with you now.

Feel and know the Spirit's presence.

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Listen

As the people were filled with expectation, and all were questioning in their hearts concerning John, whether he might be the Messiah, John answered all of them by saying, “I baptize you with water; but one who is more powerful than I is coming; I am not worthy to untie the thong of his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. His winnowing fork is in his hand, to clear his threshing floor and to gather the wheat into his granary; but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.”

Luke 3:15-17

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Think

God has given us so many people in our lives to admire, and it’s sometimes tempting to put our leaders on thrones, whether its our pastor, youth leader, or a good Christian friend. Those people are admirable, but even the most faithful leaders don’t take the place of our Lord. When people tried to confuse John with the Messiah, he pointed them back to the real deal and told them who was truly worthy of worship. Not only that, he reminded them that God could and would do greater things than any mere human, including John himself. Jesus would baptize his followers with the Holy Spirit. That’s far more powerful than anything any person can do alone.

We are the believers God will gather from the threshing floor — people rescued by God — so we know the same Spirit works in our lives. Will we worship God more than our leaders? Will we also point the people we influence back to the God who is greater than any of us?

Laura Rector

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Pray

Jesus, thank you for the gift of the Holy Spirit. Please clean out any idols from my life and use me to glorify you. Amen.

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Go

Beside the healing stream,
Drink in the Spirit's power.
In the midst of the whelming flood,
Know the Spirit's care.

Let the Spirit carry you
As the river carries a vessel
To its destination,
To its home.

Laura Rector

Laura Rector is a PhD candidate and adjunct instructor at Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, California. She attends First Baptist Church of Pomona.

Sculpting Water

Ken Medema

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