“These things I have spoken to you while abiding with you. But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you.” ~ John 14:25-26
The other day, steamed vegetables were part of our dinner menu. As I went about preparing the other dishes in the meal, I decided that I wanted to use the vegetable steamer my husband so prized, instead of just steaming them on the stove. So I tromped down to the basement, hauled it out, cleaned it off, and set it up on the counter.
And realized that I had no idea how to use it.
I also had no idea where the manual was, either.
Somehow, in my thinking that I should get the steamer out to use for dinner, it slipped my mind that my husband was always the one to use this particular small appliance. He’d had it before we were married, and thought it was the greatest little device for preparing vegetables (it is really neat – there’s a place to put spices in it and everything). But I had never been the one to use it, and now I had no way to ask him how.
Like so many other little things I come across, there are moments when I wish I could speed dial heaven and ask the operator to put me through to my husband. Things like how to operate the sprinkler system, or turn the water on and off in the wintertime. Where certain things are stored. How to use some of his tools. And so forth. But the divide between heaven and earth prevents that, for now, so I just have to make do the best I can.
When I started experiencing this in the days and months following his death, I often wondered how the disciples felt after Jesus returned to heaven. He had been with them in person, teaching and guiding them, and then He returned Home. But I imagine there were a lot of moments after He left that one of the disciples exclaimed, “If only we’d thought to ask Jesus this while He was here!”
Fortunately for all of us Christ-followers, disciples to the present, Jesus knew that we would experience just that. The promise of the Holy Spirit is to help us through this, by giving us Someone we can ask the moment we need help. Jesus knew the disciples would want to hang on to everything that was said, so He calmed them by sending His Spirit to keep those memories fresh.
This perspective has helped me see in a new light what an incredible gift the Holy Spirit is in our lives. Beyond even the pages of the Bible, we have access to a personal counselor Who will help us through every moment of our lives. God really does think of everything!
p.s. I did find the manual for the vegetable steamer on the internet. Our broccoli and carrots turned out great.