Six weeks after moving to a new city, I landed a job as a delivery driver with a dry-cleaning company. The first two days blurred with names and places and procedures, plus times and timing and details beyond number. It was adequate training with questions asked and answered as they arose. Of course, many more questions needed asking and answering but weren’t because I didn’t know them yet. (Have you ever been there?) Well, that was my dilemma and it was about to reveal itself in all its muddled splendor. On day three, my trainer called in sick and I found myself on my own with the myriad instructions spinning haphazardly around in my head. I hadn’t yet driven the one-ton panel truck. I wasn’t yet confident of my route to all eight (8) stores (problem compounded by being directionally challenged – and this was pre-GPS). Besides those first two days where I was basically a bystander (bysitter?) some of the vital importance of the schedule deadlines were not yet fully understood. I discovered, rather crudely, that showing up even fifteen minutes late from my first round of pickups was bad news. And here I’d just been congratulating myself on finding all eight stores, meeting all the employees at those stores, and then finding my way back to my starting point at the main shop! Think: baptism by fire! One more crazy detail: that same afternoon, I had a stop added to my already wildly out of control schedule. It was to go to some as-yet-undiscovered military base hotel for a once-a-month laundry pickup (do you need me to tell you that I got seriously lost, panicked, prayed, despairingly wondered if I would ever find a familiar landmark, much less our apartment at the end of the day?)

I’m confident the disciples would be able to sympathize with that scenario. Jesus had returned to the Father. The Holy Spirit had invaded them, super-saturating them with all things Kingdom and it was now show time! For three years these guys had followed and supported Jesus and his ministry. But it had always been that way – Jesus doing the speaking, teaching, healing, liberating, and the disciples watching, growing, wondering, constantly amazed at having been chosen. The safety and serenity and solidity and structure of the previous years was now replaced with a rushing torrent, hordes of people clamoring for more of the Kingdom, more of the love of Jesus, more teaching, more healing, more liberating, more Good News! And it was all on the disciples to make it happen. No, wait! They couldn’t make it happen. They were manifestly unable, inept, sinful, even. But hadn’t Jesus told them they’d do greater things than he?  There had to be a key and it must have to do with this new gift they’d been given, this Heavenly Power Source, the Holy Spirit. My guess is, when they were raggedly close to throwing in the towel, prompted by the Holy Spirit, they dared ask a bunch of heretofore unasked questions, starting with: ‘How?’ to which the answer came: ‘By me!’ And you know what? The hordes are still clamoring and the answer is still the same!  PD

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