Acts 15:1-2, 22-29
Rev 21:10-14, 22-23
Jn 14, 23-29
Making Room for the Spirit
On this Mother’s Day Sunday, May 13th, the gospel reading seemed pregnant with promises. Although I have never been pregnant, I have more than once asked a pregnant family member and friend if I might touch her belly. I am always amazed when I am able to feel the baby moving within the expectant mother.
In the gospel for May 13th, Jesus promises his disciples that he will send them the Holy Spirit who will fill them and become their guide. Just as the mother can feel that the growth of the new life within her, I would imagine that the arrival of the Holy Spirit within the disciples on that Pentecost had to be amazing as well.
This spirit would fill them and teach them all that they would need to know as they walk the road of discipleship. Not only is Jesus going to send this Spirit of Guidance, he is also going to leave them with His peace.
“I have told you this while I am with you.
The Advocate, the Holy Spirit,
whom the Father will send in my name,
will teach you everything
and remind you of all that I told you.
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you.”
It is this peace and the Holy Spirit that inspired and guided the disciples in the first reading from Acts to invite the Gentiles into living their walks as followers of Christ in a manner that honored their society.
“Since we have heard that some of our number
who went out without any mandate from us
have upset you with their teachings
and disturbed your peace of mind…
It is the decision of the Holy Spirit and of us
not to place on you any burden beyond these necessities,
namely, to abstain from meat sacrificed to idols,
from blood, from meats of strangled animals,
and from unlawful marriage.”
As I think about all of the women in my life who have taught me how to bear witness to God’s birthing presence in my life, I am quieted by the readings from May 13th. How is God seeking to be revealed in our world today? How do I let my own practices become the strict guidelines that I impose on others when they ask, “How can I come to know God?” How often do I miss the opportunities to embrace that peace that Christ left not only for those first disciples, but for me today? Dare I dream how I am called to be impregnated with God’s revelation for our world today?
Lest I get too busy with all my questions, this week I seek to be guided by the Holy Spirit who is always breathing life into us. May I receive both that peace that surpasses all understanding and the courage to follow the Spirit, who was there yesterday, today and will breathe me into my tomorrow.