Sunday is Pentecost which is probably my favorite day of the church year. I love Pentecost’s reminder that the Holy Spirit is at work in our world and in our lives, but unfortunately, I am not feeling very ‘pentecosty’ this year. In fact, I’ve been struggling all week to think of what I wanted to write not only for this devotion but for my sermon on Sunday. How’s that for scary!!!
And yet, perhaps the fact that I’m not ‘feeling’ very pentecosty is a good thing; because sometimes I can get caught up into thinking that my faith is about how I feel—it’s about what I am doing—or perhaps not doing—instead of being about what God is doing—irregardless of how I feel.
When Nicodemus comes to Jesus and asks how he can be born from above, Jesus responds by saying ‘The wind blows where it chooses, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.” (John 3:8)
I think what Jesus is saying is that we cannot control the spirit any more than we had any control over our human birth. The Spirit is not tameable—it is not controllable—it is not influenced by our feelings—the Spirit is the power of God at work in our world and in our lives. Yes, there are things we can do to make ourselves more aware of God’s Spirit or even open ourselves to the work of the Spirit, but in the end it is the Spirit who is at work—not us. And for that I give thanks!!!!