The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


Being devoted to the word

Renewal depends on stories from those who have experienced Jesus

In the crowded lower room of the house that had come to be known as the House of the Holy Spirit, the aftermath of prayer and praise could almost be experienced with all five senses. Those who were present could feel the Spirit’s presence hanging heavily yet joyfully in the room, lingering after being called upon by those in this gathered Jesus community who were coming to know God’s power and presence in some new and intimate ways.

It reminded many of what had taken place in the upper room of that same house on the day of Pentecost a few weeks before. There was an air of expectancy in that lower room, as postures visibly began to shift from celebration to contemplation. Amid that expectant shift, Peter stood up, made his way to the center of the room and began to preach.

He preached about entering a synagogue with Jesus one day as the congregation was in the midst of a song of praise and watching Jesus joyfully begin to lift his own praise to the same God. Peter reminded them how the Son of God loved to fervently praise his father and how Jesus would love the praise that had just taken place among this gathering.

Peter preached about how this same Spirit—this Presence of God, this Guide of Life, this Heart Healer and Mind Regulator—has the power to change lives, to heal minds, bodies and souls, to give sure footing in unsure times, and to remind us all that God has promised to never leave us or forsake us.

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February issue


Embracing diversity