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June 4, 2017

Today is Pentecost. In many Christian traditions clergy don red vestments and stoles and members of the church wear red attire. Other congregations ignore the significance of the day, oblivious to the liturgical calendar, the ecclesiastical equivalent to forgetting a wedding anniversary.

Pentecost is a day to acknowledge one of the greatest gifts ever bestowed on the Christian Church. This is a day of power. Today we remember a frightened, disoriented group of disciples bereaved by the departure of their Master, left alone, abandoned, and powerless.  Then suddenly they were no longer alone. They had not been abandoned after all. And, by God, they were empowered.

The wind blew at gale force. Fire fell, not to consume them, but to ignite them as if they were the burning bushes of Moses, the ones through whom God could now speak. The Spirit descended like a flock of doves perching on each one of the disciples. Now they were anointed, emboldened, equipped, and encouraged to make a difference in the world.

Pentecost is the birthday of the Christian Church.  It is a day for balloons, party hats, noise makers, and ice cream and cake. This is a day for laughter, music, and dancing. This is a joyful day of celebration.

Pentecost is a time for gifts. God grants to each of us spiritual gifts as varied as befits our diversity. On Pentecost our gracious God gives us presents, and God gives us presence, God’s invisible presence as they Holy Spirit. The Spirit of God visits us sparking in us, rekindling within us the freedom and the power of creativity, inviting us to join God Almighty in recreating this world. It is a time to painting or draw, to play and instrument or sing a song, to write a poem or a letter of encouragement. It is a day to allow the Spirit of God to guide our creative spirit to express joy and gladness.

On this Pentecost, hear the good news attributed to the Apostle Paul.

Now the Lord is the Spirit;

and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.

2 Corinthians 3:17

For God has not given us a spirit of fear,

but of power and of love and of a sound mind.

2 Timothy 1:7

Let’s celebrate!

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