The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, and provide for those who grieve in Zion—to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord for the display of his splendor. – Isaiah 61:1-3
As today’s verse refers to Jesus, the Messiah, it also applies to us as sons and daughters of God. As a co-heir with Christ, He has anointed each of us individually for a specific mission. He has created us to bring His love and His hope to those who need it. Isaiah 61 says that His Spirit is on us. The Lord does not just give a mission and expect us to do it all on our own. He has given us His Spirit to empower us and give us the strength and direction as we live out our mission.
Pastor Charles Stanley once said, “Earthly wisdom is doing what comes naturally. Godly wisdom is doing what the Holy Spirit compels us to do.” Dr. Stanley’s idea is affirmed by Acts 1 which says, “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.” He has given us His Spirit so that we can be His witnesses to those who do not know Him. He has given us His Spirit so that we can be a part of freeing the oppressed. We are anointed by the Holy Spirit to live like Jesus did. He has commanded us to “go make disciples of all nations” (Matthew 28:19) and he promises us that He “will be with us always.” We are not alone. We have the power of the Holy Spirit with us as we reach our hands out to the needy. We have the power of Christ as we spread His name to those who do not know Him.
Research: What Can I Do?
For today’s research, you’re going to begin getting a little more specific. Look at your list of organizations. Start learning about exactly what they do and how they do it. Do they run off donations? Do they have long term projects that meet needs or do they focus on specific moments where people need help? Next, begin looking at how to volunteer or donate to these organizations. What’s the time commitment you’d need to make? What does your budget look like right now? Begin thinking about which organization you’d most like to work with.
Activity: Others First
Everybody could use some help sometimes. However, it can be difficult to reach out and ask for help, especially if you feel like your needs are small or are something you should be able to take care of yourself. Today, you’re going to make the first move and bridge that difficult gap between needing help and asking for it. Choose three people who are close to you, either family or friends, and ask them what you can do to help them with a problem or hard situation they’re dealing with. Then do what you can to help them. Maybe just listening to them talk, or even just asking how you can help in the first place will make them feel seen and cared for. Or maybe there’s something tangible you can do. Whatever it is, do it with your whole heart and the best of your efforts.