Scripture: John 16:16-33
Observation: As Jesus prepares to go to the cross, he tells his disciples about his impending death and resurrection. He ensures them that he’ll send his Holy Spirit to guide and care for them after he leaves.
Application: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat – you name it, we use it. The latest research says that the average person spends two hours on a social media per day. For most of us, that’s more time than we spend reading, praying, hanging out with our spouses, or talking to our friends in a single day combined.
We’re the most ‘wired’ generation in the history of the world – but we’re also the loneliest.
We all have this deep desire to belong and to be connected with others. It’s why social media is so addicting – it fosters a wealth of pseudo-connections, helping us think that we’re developing community when we’re often just disengaging with real-life relationships.
Long before the invention of the Internet, we’ve had a desire to belong and feel connected hardwired into us. Jesus understood this desire:
“’Yes, I came from the Father into the world, and now I will leave the world and return to the Father.’” (v. 28)
Jesus was intimately connected to his Father – he listened to his voice, followed his leading, and took on his character. As his followers, he asked his disciples to do the same – and he refused to let them figure it out on their own. He sent them a way they could always be connected to him --his Holy Spirit, the “Advocate.”
“But in fact, it is best for you that I go away because if I don’t, the Advocate won’t come. If I do go away, then I will send him to you… When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own but will tell you what he has heard. He will tell you about the future. He will bring me glory by telling you whatever he receives from me. All that belongs to the Father is mine; this is why I said, ‘The Spirit will tell you whatever he receives from me.’” (v. 7, 12-15)
In other words, you are not alone.
When you face that problem that threatens everything you’ve ever known, you are not alone.
When you’re not sure where to go next, you are not alone.
When you’re trying to suppress your old, human sin and embrace a new, God-focused perspective, you are not alone.
When you feel desperately broken and hopeless, you are not alone.
When you need encouragement, you are not alone.
You are not alone.
You are connected – truly, deeply connected – to the One who laid down his life so that you could live.
Prayer: God, thank you for sending the Holy Spirit so that we would never truly have to be alone. I pray I’ll live by the leading of the Advocate in every way. I invite your Spirit to guide my thinking, my actions, and my attitude. Amen.