Even as Peter was saying these things, the Holy Spirit fell upon all who were listening to the message. The Jewish believers who came with Peter were amazed that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out on the Gentiles, too. For they heard them speaking in other tongues and praising God. Then Peter asked, “Can anyone object to their being baptized, now that they have received the Holy Spirit just as we did?” So he gave orders for them to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. Afterward Cornelius asked him to stay with them for several days. (NLT)
No one in Peter’s time was quite expecting non Jews to receive the Holy Spirit of God as they themselves had done. But God did the unexpected. He arranged for Peter and his Jerusalem church colleagues to visit a Gentile called Cornelius. This was quite a shock to Peter who hadn’t yet absorbed the fact that God wanted the good news of Jesus to spread out into the whole world and not just be the possession of a small ethnic enclave.
Peter did what God told him and as a result Cornelius and his fellow Gentiles received the Spirit of God in the same way as those who listened to Peter in Jerusalem on the Day of Pentecost. The fact they spoke in tongues rammed home the point that God was treating them equally: they were not second rate believers with a toned down Holy Spirit.
We do need to allow God to do the unexpected. We can fall into two opposite errors here. One error is to assume God will always do the unexpected. The other error is to assume he will never do the unexpected. Be open to the extraordinary, but also be open to God in the ordinary routines of life. Let God be God.