Corinthians, different gifts, Holy Spirit, James, Paul, Pentecost, same spirit, solution, Spirit of God, spiritual practice, The Sophia Center for Spirituality
Although very conscious of the vigil and feast of Pentecost for the past few days, I was unable to comment on my thoughts in a blog post. On Saturday while driving to Massachusetts for a family wedding on my favorite highway – splendid in the environmental beauty and never crowded with other travelers – I was suddenly aware of the resolution of an issue that had been noodling around in my heart for a week. It wasn’t as if I resolved it myself but, clearly, it had become a peaceful solution inside me. The Spirit of God was working, surely, for my benefit. Conversations at the wedding and in the evaluative sessions that followed in the aftermath (some would say “afterglow”) convinced me of the blessing of our extended family, no matter distance, diversity or individual character traits. We are bound by our DNA, our history and the lovely young people who are carrying us on to the future. Love was flowing everywhere. The foundation of connection that was passed down to us by our parents remains with “the cousins” and has been well-received by the now two generations that follow. Regardless of the varieties of belief or spiritual practice in this new time, Paul’s words from this morning were manifest in our family and in our conversations yesterday. “There are different gifts,” he says, “but the same spirit…To each individual the manifestation of the Spirit is given for some benefit.” (1COR 12) We are, I think, a microcosm of Paul’s vision of the macrocosm.
As it was yesterday, the wind is blowing wildly this morning, moving me back to my “regular life.” As I think about the group – 11 of us – that will join this afternoon to deepen spiritual practice together, I am reminded of those who huddled long ago in that upper room waiting for the Spirit that came in that “mighty wind” and hope that we might touch into such a power in our midst. I will take the words of James with me. In his letter he says, “Who among you is wise and understanding? Let him show his works by a good life in the humility that comes from wisdom.” (JAS 3:3-18).
The Church calendar says that we have re-entered Ordinary Time but I am convinced that, with God’s Spirit, our Advocate, as our guide, this time of spring into summer will be anything but ordinary!