Message: In Acts 1 Jesus gathered his disciples before ascending to heaven and he instructed them not to leave Jerusalem. They were to wait there for the promise. To them the promise was the Messiah so they asked Jesus if this was the time he would restore the kingdom of Israel. He told them it was not for them to know the times that God has set. This promise was the Holy Spirit. This was a promise he had been preparing them for all along, but they had no point of reference to even comprehend what was coming. I think about this as Christians try to decipher the book of Revelation. We have prophecies and ideas about how these things will happen but none of us really knows how it will all come together. The important thing here was that they came together united in prayer. In their unity they chose the apostle that would replace Judas and their unity is what prepared them to receive the promise to come in the next chapter. Looking back a few chapters we see that this is exactly what Jesus was praying for before his crucifixion. He repeatedly prayed “let them be one as you and I are one.” He knew this would be necessary and this is what is necessary for us as the church today also. We pray for a lot of things but reading this was a huge reminder to me of the importance of unity. We can’t accomplish anything effective without it. We can all make tiny movements on our own but unified in God’s purpose we will be the force that he intended us to be. This challenges me to pray for unity beginning with the smaller circles I am in and expanding into the larger picture. This also challenges me to set aside anything that would hinder unity. A negative attitude, jealousy, judgment, personality differences etc. Today I choose to look for and intentionally celebrate and support what others are doing for the kingdom and I choose to pray for unity among us. This is what will catch the attention of the lost and this is what will accomplish what the church was intended to accomplish.