When the day of Pentecost arrived, they were all together in one place. And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance. Acts 2:1-4
The Day of Pentecost changed everything for the disciples, the church and us! The promised outpouring of the Holy Spirit is a powerful gift that instills faith and powers the Church! We know the third person of the Holy Trinity is no less significant than the Father and the Son and yet we sometimes have a hard time knowing what to say. After all, the first Pentecost saw the dramatic speaking in many languages and the tongues of fire on the heads of the people. We can’t really re-enact that event like Christmas and Easter. You don’t hear of Pentecost pageants. It is not that easy to come up with a visual for the working of the Holy Spirit today – or is it?
The action of the Holy Spirit does happen in our hearts as we gather around Word and Sacrament (and those are visual) and it happens in the lives of real people as they show they are Christians by their love. I know that Memorial Day sneaks in there this year and in Indiana we are all very much aware of the Indy 500. However, the great and lasting blessings of Pentecost are forever and deeply personal.
One of our congregations puts out huge red flags on that day so that people will know, remember and celebrate the powerful gift of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost Sunday. This promised gift of Jesus comes 50 days after the resurrection! Happy Pentecost!