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Unlock The Door!
Happy Birthday everyone!
I am wishing you happy birthday because we are celebrating the birth of the church during this Pentecost weekend. Pentecost was the time that Jesus breathed life into the church, and sent the Holy Spirit upon the disciples as He said “Receive the Holy Spirit”. In a very real sense this was a special type of “ordination” to the disciples, whom Jesus gave the ability to forgive and retain sins. Before Pentecost the disciples were holed up in the upper room and were scared to go out on mission. So not only does Jesus imbue the Holy Spirit upon the disciples, He “unlocks the door”, and sends them out to further His mission on earth according to their own particular gifts, and to have other people join the mission and grow the church. I have been blessed to see these gifts lived out collectively and individually in the service of God and His church. Reflecting upon the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit, it made me realize just how much we need each other to grow the church, and even to survive in this world. We were blessed earlier in the week to have three speakers be with us at our mission who focussed on the Holy Spirit, leading up to Pentecost weekend. Each speaker brought their own gifts, and ways of teaching us about the Holy Spirit, and all three have been able to bring Christ into the world and bring people to Christ through their various ministries.
In our lives, if we take some of the gifts one by one, I bet we will all have someone come to mind who has that particular gift. For the gift of wisdom, I think of my parents, for the gift of understanding I think of my spiritual
director, for the gift of fortitude I think of my wife, just to name a few. What has come abundantly clear to me is that I wouldn’t be able to get along without them, and the gifts that they bring or have brought to me. I am sure all of you have similar experiences and feelings as I have, in that we are intrinsically connected to one another in our lives, and are so much stronger together than trying to go it alone. As we grow in relationship and love for the Holy Spirit, our relationships to each other grow as well. This growth in the Spirit should orient us outward rather than inward,
toward service to God and others rather than service toward ourselves. That itself is the greatest gift we are given, and one shared by all whom open their hearts to it. Let us pray for the grace to “unlock the door” to mission this Pentecost weekend.
God bless you all
Deacon Dan MacDonald