Mary asked the angel, “But how can this happen? I am a virgin.”
The angel replied, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the baby to be born will be holy, and he will be called the Son of God.” (Luke 1:34–35 NLT)
Throughout the Bible, we see God’s Holy Spirit at work. He is often seen as wind, fire, or a cloud descending on or filling God’s chosen. Prior to Pentecost, the Holy Spirit came upon those in positions of authority—such as a prophet, priest, or king—or those who were given a task from God—such as the craftsmen who built the Tabernacle and the Ark of the Covenant. Mary finds herself a member of this second group after a visit by Gabriel. Despite her marginal status within the community—or possibly because of it—she is chosen by God to bear the Son of God, which includes the Holy Spirit coming upon her.
After Jesus’s death, resurrection, and ascent, the indwelling of the Holy Spirit was still only gifted to those in authority or those who were given special task from God, but the list of those who are considered priests was expanded to include all believers and all of us have been anointed with the special task of creating disciples. As we often say within the NAB, just as the Father sent the Son and the Father and Son sent the Spirit, so the Father, Son, and Spirit send us.
We are not alone. We are not sent unprepared or unsupported; we are given the Holy Spirit, who is with us through every moment as a source of power, insight, and truth. Find some specific way today you can put into practice living as a sent disciple of Jesus, empowered by the Holy Spirit dwelling within you.