Jeannie Cunnion: Feeling powerless? Pentecost offers this blessing in troubled times

I closed the door behind me, ensured it was locked so my hotel room was secure, and headed toward the elevator to attend a full-day conference. Stepping off the elevator into the bustling lobby, I made coffee and checked my phone before walking to my car. That’s when I got the dreaded “low-power mode” notice. I thought I’d charged my phone while I slept, but something went wrong. My phone was close to shutting down, and until then, I’d be running on low power.

Most of us will do almost anything to avoid using our phones in low-power mode. We’ll borrow a charger from a stranger or purchase a portable power stick at the store. Who wants to live with low power, limited capability, and frustrating results? And yet, this is precisely how many of us have become accustomed to living the Christian life because we aren’t living in the power of the Holy Spirit that was given at Pentecost.


Maybe we’re choosing to keep the Holy Spirit at arm’s length because of the baggage attached to Him, making us fear He’ll make us strange. Or maybe we don’t know the dramatic difference Pentecost is meant to make in our daily lives. Pentecost occurred 50 days after Jesus’ resurrection and ten days after His ascension. It was the day the Father fulfilled His promise to pour out the Holy Spirit not just onto but into His people (Acts 1:5-9). At 9 in the morning, the Holy Spirit was unleashed in the Upper Room in Jerusalem into 120 people, including the disciples. Each one received the supernatural power of God that forever changed how we experience God’s presence and energy now. It is a power that continues to defy human understanding and supersede human capability.

Jeannie Cunnion

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When the Holy Spirit filled the disciples at Pentecost, “there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested on each one of them” (John 2:2–3). And they were empowered to speak other known and recognizable languages they had not personally known how to talk about previously. The good news of salvation in Jesus was now accessible to every nation and language. God ordained it, and the Holy Spirit enabled it!

Ordinary, even fearful, people gathered in a room, just waiting for the Holy Spirit to come, as Jesus had instructed them to. They were radically transformed into people who preached the gospel with clarity, conviction, and courage. They became conduits of God’s power to bring healing and hope, for the praise of God’s name, through the power of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit that filled the disciples at Pentecost is the same Holy Spirit who filled Jesus and empowered Him for His earthly ministry at His baptism in the Jordan River by John the Baptist.

This is the same power Jesus had when He was tempted to sin by Satan and didn’t succumb, and the same passion when He performed miracles, healed the sick, raised the dead, and cast out demons. We don’t need more willpower. We need more Spirit-power. This is the same resurrection power that raised Jesus Christ from the dead! And this is the same power of the Holy Spirit deposited in us today when we put our trust in Jesus! (John 14:16-18) We aren’t given a mini version of the Holy Spirit today. We aren’t given a less willing or less able Holy Spirit. The supernatural power of God is the Person of the Holy Spirit in us, and He longs to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or imagine through His mighty power at work within us.

But if we don’t intentionally welcome and depend on His empowering presence, we will never know the abundance available to us in Jesus Christ! This is why it’s not enough to acknowledge His existence but avoid Him as part of the Christian experience. We rob ourselves of experiencing the power of God when we neglect the significance of the Holy Spirit’s work in us because no matter how hard we strive, human effort cannot produce phenomenal results. We don’t need more willpower. We need more Spirit-power.

Even more than that, knowing we have the Holy Spirit living inside us should give us extraordinary confidence. What is more empowering than knowing Almighty God dwells in us by His Spirit? When battling toxic thinking, facing a frightening diagnosis, navigating financial hardship, fighting fear over an uncertain future, struggling in a difficult marriage, feeling hopeless over foolish choices our children are making, or feeling stuck in the same old strongholds or addictions, we can confidently call on the power of the Holy Spirit, who is our supernatural Helper.

If His power can raise our Savior from the grave, think of what He can do in and through you when you lean into His strengthening presence! The Holy Spirit is a priceless gift given to everyone who trusts Jesus. His blessing can’t be bought. His power can’t be purchased. Do you know what priceless treasure lives in you? Suppose you are a follower of Jesus who is feeling powerless over circumstances in your life today. In that case, I invite you to discover the power given at Pentecost, which is yours to experience and express in your daily life!

Tyson Houlding
I’m a lifestyle blogger with a passion for writing, photography, and exploring new places. I started this blog when I was 18 years old to share what I was learning about the world with family and friends. I’ve since grown into a freelance writer, blogger, and photographer with a growing audience. I hope you find inspiration and motivation while reading through my work!