Next Sunday is Pentecost. I have a sermon to preach, at an Ecumenical Service. More of that in a later post.
I love Pentecost. I love the creativity and dynamic sense of the Spirit with us.
One of the rich resources I use for personal prayer is the Irish Jesuit's website Sacred Space .
In preparation for Pentecost, this week it offers some delightful invitations to recognize the Spirit's presence.
I want to quote, with acknowledgment, the opening commentary fro Monday's devotion.
'The Holy Spirit introduces no new ideas, but improves and deepens my knowledge of what I already know. (Here, reference to John 14. 26, the Paraclete whom Jesus said would 'remind you of all I have said to you'.)
We shall sometimes, but not always, be conscious of a special divine presence. … But God's action, though strong, is often quite imperceptible, for instance as the grace of fidelity in a time of great aridity.'
That is a beautiful invitation: to know the 'imperceptible' presence, and especially this naming of God's faithful presence, the 'grace of fidelity' during our times of dullness, dryness, or simple crassness.
God does not give up on me! The Spirit is the encircling, nourishing and inviting presence, no matter what.
The Spirit gives life, even when we are so busy with 'life' that we do not notice it, enjoy it, celebrate it.
So then, this same site invited me to pray: 'Teach me to recognize your hand at work in my daily living.'
This too is a a warm and inviting prayer. It does not repudiate my daily tasks, the realities of what we have to do. It invites us to see them as having a divine meaning as well as their very ordinary significance and value.
This is what the Spirit does: John Taylor once called it 'bi-sociation'. He meant being able to see two levels of meaning, significance and value, at the same time. The Spirit does not replace the everyday, but wraps it with another meaning as well. It does not draw us away from 'the real world', but allows us to see that all too familiar world with depth, freshness and hope. It gives life to living.
'Teach me to recognize your hand at work in my daily living.'