The People's Friend

From The Manse Window

From the manse window

- By Janice Ross.

MY bottle of washingup liquid finally ran out this week, and I found myself smiling as I thought about the little boy in a recent TV advert for this product.

He has earmarked the bottle as perfect for a spacecraft model. The only drawback is that the liquid is taking so long to run out.

And so, with his head resting on the kitchen worktop, the little lad looks wistfully at a bottle that seems to be lasting for ever and marks off yet another day on the calendar.

This sweet advert reminded me of the earlier pink bunnies advertisem­ents for batteries.

Just like the claim made by the washing-up liquid, the bunny when powered by a certain type of battery continues functionin­g far longer than an identical device using different batteries.

I can remember an older version of this advertisem­ent, where a band of cute little pink bunnies were all cheerfully drumming together.

One by one the bunnies stopped drumming, leaving the winning bunny looking very pleased with himself.

The advert suggested that he could continue to work from two to six times longer by using this type of battery.

So often our Christian work and church activities can tell a similar story.

We fill our diaries with meetings, aim to be hospitable and try to find times to pray.

We look out for the lonely, the elderly and any new person in our midst.

We bake scones for the coffee mornings and, eventually, we all run out of steam, often also losing enthusiasm on the way.

Believe it or not, our problem is the same as that of the pink bunnies.

We are using the wrong battery.

We are, in fact, trying to do God’s work with our own strength, mustering up our own power.

And we manage pretty well like this.

But the Bible says we are to remain in Christ, for, “apart from me you can do nothing.”

Nothing that is spiritual; nothing that is powerful and effectual; nothing that can have eternal significan­ce.

Nothing is a very sobering word!

After Jesus’s resurrecti­on he instructed his frightened, weary and disillusio­ned disciples to wait in Jerusalem until the Holy Spirit came on them.

He promised to send the Holy Spirit to be their counsellor and advocate, the bearer of God’s truth by which to live, and their source of power.

As promised, the day of Pentecost came sweeping in and the disciples were transforme­d and empowered, and, as a result of that power we know the good news today.

Our world so needs to see God move, powerfully.

Let’s make sure we are living in the power of the Holy Spirit.

Next week: the Rev. Ian Petrie worries about worrying . . .

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