Last week I was reminded of a quote from Richard Rohr, “Humans often end up doing evil by thinking we can and must eliminate all evil, instead of holding it, suffering it ourselves, and learning from it, as Jesus does on the cross.”
As I ponder this thought I find myself curious about the 50 days between Resurrection Sunday and Pentecost. Did I, as a pastor, guide us “through” Eastertide in a way that truly prepares us for the outpouring of God’s Spirit in our lives? In our church?
Then, again, how does one fully prepare for such an outpouring?
I wonder if these 50 days went by as quickly for the disciples in the 1st Century as they have for us.
I wonder if they totally missed this time because the grief and splendor of death and resurrection were too much to comprehend and process in such a short period of time.
Can one truly prepare for such a day as Pentecost?
Ironically, Pentecost was a day they knew quite well. They prepared for it every year since the days of Moses. How amazing that the Breath of God would exhale something new and powerful into such a familiar space so that each could understand in a personal and familiar way the power of God’s love.
So maybe, just maybe, we eliminate evil, not by predicting and plotting, but by suffering and learning, and by allowing the Spirit of God to exhale something new and powerful into a day like today.
May 22, 2023