Sunday 31st May 2020

Acts 2:1-21; 1 Corinthians 12:3b-13 ; John 20:19-23 ; Psalm 104:25-35, 37

(Alternatives: Numbers 11:24-30; John 7:37-39)

Pentecost is a day to remember the outpouring of God's Spirit and seek to celebrate and re-experience this reality in our own Christian journey. The Psalm reminds us that God's works are all around us, revealed through the cycles and objects of nature. Verse 31 of the Psalm connects us with the reality, asserted in Genesis of the role in Creation of God's Spirit - the source of life, the sustainer of life. The Psalm also makes a couple of direct references to the world of work - those who travel the seas enabling trade and commerce; the tending and caring for livestock. These Scriptures speak powerfully of our dependence on God's Spirit for every aspect of our being. It is the Spirit who enables us to work by giving us life and vitality; it is the Spirit who brings forth the commodities of the earth with which we can manufacture and trade. Even the gifts of the Spirit are not constrained to the religious dimensions within which we so often seek to express them. We might couple the Corinthians reading with the words of Exodus 31:1-4 in which Belazel and Oholiab are also described as filled and gifted by the Spirit. Yet the Spirit's outpouring results in them being fine craftsmen, able to make the most beautiful designs in gold, silver and precious stones.

God the Creator is depicted as one who enjoys and revels in His own handiwork. Humanity is made in His image, so through working we reflect His likeness and express the Spirit's presence and enabling.

We can recognise therefore that the outpouring of God's Spirit, better enables us to participate in the world of Work. The dynamics and language of Pentecost, offer us an opportunity to affirm and celebrate every aspect of Human existence. Our Pentecost experience is no less evidenced on Monday morning when lives are invested in the creativity, commerce and human interaction that we call work. God's Spirit may have made Peter a better preacher, but she also made him a better fisherman.