Sunday, May 31, 2009

Catching the spirit's fire . . .

Today we celebrated Pentecost Sunday -- the Biblical account of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit talked about in Acts 2 that fell so heavy on the people it had them speaking in different tongues! Had them doing things -- performing acts they probably wouldn't have done on their own. This is one of the two paintings one of the members, Callie painted while Pastor Catherine delivered the sermon. (She painted during each service) I've never experienced a service like that before. It kind of reminded me of being at a spoken word sect, which is where I would expect to see something like that -- an artist painting to the rhythm of the words being spoken. But it was church. And it was nice. . . out-of-the box! What made it even more spirit-filled were the 20-plus doves that were released after each service as a sign of the Holy Spirit going out into the world. (I'll try to get pics posted soon)

Interestingly, before the service started, a parishioner told me he wished he had courage like me. This was the second time I had had this conversation with someone at Harvest and I found it interesting that they automatically assumed I had this character trait.
So I asked, "What makes you think I have courage?"
The man replied, "You must, to do what you're doing. To follow this call."
I guess some would think that. But the truth is I don't really have that much courage. I actually have that much fear -- fear of what would happen it I didn't follow it. Fear of what my life would look like -- mediocre at best. Definitely unfulfilling. (I had seen glimpses, got a t-shirt and wasn't interested in revisiting.)
But just like I shared with that parishioner, most of what I do these days surrounding my foray into ministry also has a lot to do with the Holy Spirit's influence. Just as one of my professors pointed out in her book, there has to be some higher calling that would have one open themselves up to being castigated as an impostor or pimp, or giving up their jobs and homes to go back to school at nearly 40. There has to be something higher operating that would have someone go places they never thought they would -- sometimes into uncharted territory.

So I can't say whether it's really courage that I have, but there is definitely some level of faith.

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