Updated: Nov 24, 2021
The event of Pentecost, observed this weekend, is an invitation for us to reflect on gifts that are hidden, mysterious and very real. One does not have to try very hard to remember something unexpected and providential that happened in the past, followed by an immediate insight that God was involved. At times we receive uncalled-for promptings: to make a call, to check on a friend, to give someone a hand or to ask for forgiveness. The Holy Spirit is always present and connected as it whispers, nudges and shakes up our normal life in an effort to get us to go love, give, do the right thing, listen, play and pray.
The most beautiful and strongest gift with which we are born is our human spirit. As other natural gifts such as intellect, mobility and memory fade and fail, our spirit keeps striving and growing through the vicissitudes of life. This is our truest personal identity, the last part to leave our bodies when we pass on, the "piece" of us that is meant to live forever. When our human spirit wakes up to the promptings of the Holy Spirit and moves into an intentional union with God, we find the true meaning and joy of our lives!
"When our human spirit wakes up to the promptings of the Holy Spirit and moves into an intentional union with God, we find the true meaning and joy of our lives!"
The day of Pentecost was a turning point in the lives of the early Christians. Far from being a quiet, whispering event (which most of us would prefer), the Holy Spirit arrived upon the scene with all the power and force of Heaven! Tongues of fire, rushing winds, shaking of walls and a connectivity of races and tongues unprecedented until that time. The apostles were taken into the passion of God and drawn into a new vision through supernatural gifts of wisdom, understanding, counsel, fortitude, knowledge, wonder and awe of God's presence. They were given inspiration, energy and the wholeness of heart to follow God's will for them and to guide their sisters and brothers through their mission on earth into eternal joy.
"Far from being a quiet, whispering event (which most of us would prefer), the Holy Spirit arrived upon the scene with all the power and force of Heaven!"
The Holy Spirit of God is a pure gift which is offered to all. If we can see how God prompts us when we are asleep, imagine what He will do when we awaken and say yes to His invitation! Our strongest gift for this spiritual passage is our prayer. Even many who struggle to believe in God, admit to believing in the power of prayer. From what source, then, comes this thought of prayer? The Holy Spirit draws all people to God, regardless of personality, preference, race or nation. When we feel the need to draw closer to holiness, to read scripture or to pray -- those promptings are of the Holy Spirit!
The event of Pentecost brought forth a new era! A new church was born, to bring forth not its own light, but the Light of Christ into the world. We pray for the constant renewal of our church and our society in the Holy Spirit. We also pray for ourselves, that we accept and respond to the Holy Spirit as it whispers and nudges us to go and love, give, listen, play, laugh and pray. Perhaps it will shake up our lives!
"The event of Pentecost brought forth a new era! A new church was born, to bring forth not its own light, but the Light of Christ into the world."
The thoughts and promptings are coming! Come worship with us and learn more.
Come, Holy Spirit!
Sincerely in Christ,
+Bishop Stephen J. Berg