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Pentecost – Unfolding Light

All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit
             and began to speak in other languages,
             as the Spirit gave them ability.

                                         —Acts 2.4

Pentecost was not, as some say, “the undoing of Babel”—
now we all speak the same language!
No, it was the opposite: the blessing of Babel.
We learn one another's languages.
We embrace diversity, and learn to listen to each other,
to see from another's perspective,
to give voice to a life other than our own,
to make central a language that's not our own,
to communicate grace that's not on our own terms.
We acknowledge the differences in our lives,
honor one another's various home places and cultures,
and cross over the boundaries of comfort and familiarity.

On that Pentecost day I don't imagine they were eloquent.
They spoke in halting Phrygian, mangled Mesopotamian.
It probably took some back-and-forth, some double-checking.
It required not just proclaiming but listening, relating,
and patience on the part of the hearers,
and courage and humility on the part of the speakers—
willingness to be beginners, to risk, to appear foolish,
to forgo the safety of being in the dominant group.

Pray for such humility and courage, to risk for the sake of love,
to be foolish for the sake of relating,
to let other people's reality be real.
In such loving, the Holy Spirit will speak, loud and clear.

Two artworks from our Digital Faith Artists | Ministries - thanks to our members who are offering their spiritual gift of art to our community and sharing with us in this creative way!