1 Cor 12:3b-7, 12-13
Although I have never lived in a geographic area that is prone to earth quakes I find myself quite curious about the mile distance from the epicenter of the quake out to the furthest point where some of a physical impact can be felt. I have lived with people who have been close to or near the epicenter and their descriptions of what it is like is scary. In the little town in Iowa where I grew up we had tornados that did a fare amount of damage, but usually it happened in a narrow swath. We also had the benefit of usually being warned before the eye of the storm arrived. I am talking in generalities, I am sure that there are exceptions.
In the reading for May 31st we are given a description of what happened when the Spirit descended upon the crowd. I have some curiosity about how large a group was immediately impacted by the Holy Spirit. How far out from the center of that crowd did the Holy Spirit impact? How immediately were people able to hear others speaking in their own language? What did it feel like in their physical bodies and how did they process this powerful experience? Did the spirit move like an earthquake or a tornado in its impact?
This week as I moved about on the various units of the hospital I thought about the stories of the Pentecost. I wondered to what extent I am open to the power of that spirit? Can others experience the power of the spirit in my life? How often do my works of love create waves of healing beyond the patient I visit?
It is my understanding that the Spirit the Advocate continues to be sent. There are times when rituals and ceremonies call upon the Spirit to bless, heal, and affirm a particular commitment. I wonder though how often I miss the Spirit showing up unannounced for a particular person or situation, or even for myself.
As this summer unfolds, I have committed myself to opening my eyes and heart to the Holy Spirit both in announced and unannounced situations. May this widening attention make room for God’s grace in new and playful ways.