Big Power

But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth. –Acts 1:8

At 5:04 p.m. on October 17, 1989, I was speaking to a group of youth workers at a convention in San Francisco. It had been a great day; many of us had plans to watch the World Series that night (which was being played down the street from the hotel where I was speaking and staying). But our plans abruptly changed. The room began to shake. The chandeliers moved back and forth. I quit speaking and there was a deafening silence. Everyone watched and waited. And then it hit: The Big One.

We all ran outside. People screamed, some cried. Most of us just looked around in awe at the incredible power of this quake. We watched the hotel across the street lose the entire front of the building. Water shot out of pipes. It was devastating and frightening.

Later we heard the news that all of the Bay Area was paralyzed.
• 67 people had been killed.
• 6 billion dollars of estimated property damage.
• 12,000 people were left homeless.*

The magnitude 7.1 earthquake lasted only 15 seconds but its force will forever be ingrained on my life. When I think about this experience, the word that comes to my mind is “power.” The raw power of the earth shaking forced millions of people to stop and adjust their lives.

Why does it take an earthquake or another powerful event to get our attention when in reality, we have the awesome power of God available to us through His Holy Spirit?

You can tap into the power of God by yielding to His Holy Spirit. If the earth stores up ferocious power for destruction, imagine God’s power to do good in the world He created.

1. If you could draw upon God’s power today, what would you ask Him to do?

2. Take a moment to pray and ask the Holy Spirit to fill and empower you.

Psalm 29:1-4

* “San Francisco Earthquake History 1915-1989,” The Virtual Museum of the City of San Francisco

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Jim Burns

Jim Burns is the president of HomeWord. He speaks to thousands of people around the world each year. He has close to 2 million resources in print in 20 languages. He primarily writes and speaks on the values of HomeWord, which are: Strong Marriages, Confident Parents, Empowered Kids, and Healthy Leaders. Some of his most popular books are: Confident Parenting, The Purity Code, Creating an Intimate Marriage, Closer, and Doing Life with Your Adult Children. Jim and his wife, Cathy, live in Southern California and have three grown daughters, Christy, Rebecca, and Heidi; three sons-in-law, Steve and Matt, and Andy; and three grandchildren, James, Charlotte and Huxley.

  • About HomeWord

    HomeWord helps families succeed by creating Biblical resources that build strong marriages, confident parents, empowered kids and healthy leaders. Founded by Jim Burns, HomeWord seeks to advance the work of God in the world by educating, equipping, and encouraging parents and churches. Learn More »

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