1st Scripture Reading: Acts 2:1-21 & Psalm 104
“The Story of Pentecost” by Keltie van Binsbergen
Hymn #382 VU “Breathe on me breath of God”
2nd Scripture Reading: Romans 8:14-17 & John 14:8-17
Philip said, “Lord, show us the Father and we will be satisfied.” Our search for God is perennial it seems. And I sense a little exasperation in the response of Jesus, “I’ve been with you all this time and you still don’t get it?” And don’t we always say, “God is with us, we are never alone”? Jesus goes on to say, “I am in the Father and the Father is in me”, and in another place he assures us that he is the true vine, and we are the branches of that vine.
In the reading from Paul’s letter to the Romans we hear Paul say, “For all who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God, …and therefore joint heirs with Christ.”
The divinity we seek and never seem to find is all around us and within us, people of God. Today we celebrate the fulfillment of Jesus’ promise to send the Holy Spirit upon humanity on the day of Pentecost. What a day that must have been! Fire and wind and the wisdom of the Holy Spirit being spoken in many languages all at the same time!
As many of you probably know, I am not a big sports fan. But how about those Raptors, eh! I was struck by a couple of things as I watched the last couple of games: first that we have only one basketball team in Canada, and so everyone who loves the game has rallied around this one team, and secondly, how that coming together transcends our racial, religious and socioeconomic differences to really demonstrate to ourselves and to the world the values we place on diversity and inclusion.
Toronto’s huge immigrant population has shown how they have come together in a strange place to sing a new song. It’s about survival, about adaptation and about tolerance of each other including our differences. In our diversity there is strength and the possibility of new ideas coming out of different experiences to enrich the life of every Canadian.
And for now, it’s about a CELEBRATION! In this new life, in this new world there is something new and wonderful to bring joy and laughter and friendship into what may have initially been a harsh and difficult transition.
So as a Canadian I am surprised and impressed by what I see happening here. Organized sports may distract us from other important civic affairs, but they also bring us together in heartwarming ways that are helping to heal our communities.
The God who is around and within us, and who breathes all life into us, is always doing a new thing. Help us all to be open to those new things that are breathing new life into our country and our world.
Hymn #150 MV “Spirit God, be our breath”