June 8, 2023
Our Weekly Meditation
On Pentecost, I spent a little time reading about, and reflecting on, the Holy Spirit. According to Acts, when the Spirit first descended upon the disciples, there was “a sound like the blowing of a violent storm…what appeared to be tongues of fire…and [the disciples] speaking in other tongues…”
Holy mackerel. What a scene.
At the end of it all, the disciples asked – naturally — “What does this mean?” But in 2023 I asked myself a very different question: “Is this what happens when you encounter the Holy Spirit?”
I doubt if any of us has ever said our prayers and then suddenly encountered a violent storm, flames of fire and a cacophony of foreign voices (maybe you have, but I haven’t). More often than not, our encounters with the Holy Spirit seem to be quiet and quotidian, moments that are part of our everyday life.
Sharing a meal. Walking the dog. Enjoying the sunset. Being present to sick friend. Crying at a funeral. Being aware and thankful for every breath of life.
This squares exactly with how Paul described the Holy Spirit in Galatians. In his typically direct way, Paul said we’re in the presence of the Spirit when we exhibit, or experience, “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness, and self-control.”
What a fine list – and not one word about fire or foreign languages! I’m comforted to know that, while the disciples had an extraordinary and earth-shaking experience, we can expect to encounter the Holy Spirit in the most ordinary of times, places and circumstances.
May the Spirit be with you — everywhere.
Each morning, peace arrives at your door in the form of choices. – Anon