June 07, 2019
In the middle of the night last Wednesday the power went out in our house. I heard a little pop and then everything went dark and very quiet. There were no sounds of the ceiling or air conditioning fans and none of the blue or green lights from the TV or microwave. It was dark and quiet with no power. Sometimes dark and quiet is pleasant and comforting. This time it was disconcerting. The power was out for a couple of hours. When it came back on, one of the annoying things was having to reset all the clocks in the house.
After Jesus died, rose and left his disciples again, the book of Acts tells us they waited for the next thing. Jesus had told them he was coming back and had also told them that his Spirit would be coming to them. I picture that his followers waited in a dark and quiet space, unsure of what was next and more than a little disconcerted. It was an uncertain and upsetting time, a power-less time. They were living in the midst of power outage.
Then at Pentecost God’s Spirit DID come to them, in a powerful display of wind and fire and Jesus’ followers were filled with that power and could do many things in his name. Sometimes the power of God’s Spirit comes that way to us, too, in a big way. But sometimes God’s Spirit comes to us more like breath, in a quiet and yet power-bringing way. In John 20 Jesus comes to his disciples who are huddled fearfully in a dark, quiet place. He says twice to them, “Peace be with you.” Then we’re told that he breathes on them and says, “Receive the Holy Spirit.” No display of wind and fire. Just the quiet voice and the breath of Jesus.
This Sunday, Pentecost, June 9, as part of Words to Think About we look at Power and will talk about the ways Jesus’ Spirit breathes life into the dark and uncertain places of our lives. God’s Spirit is breathing power into our lives even now, and into St. Mark’s, and into the United Methodist Church. God is at work, making sure there is no power outage. Come and see and hear good news.
P.S. Red is the color of Pentecost, symbolizing the power of God’s Spirit.
From June 12-16, Pastors Sharon and Stuart, and our lay members Kelly Deyoe, Casey Compernolle, Patricia Kittrell, and Robert Kittrell, and others from St. Mark’s will be at the Desert Southwest Annual Conference meeting in Mesa, AZ. The Annual Conference members will be doing the business of the Desert Southwest Conference as well as engaging in intense discussions about our hopes, dreams and concerns for the UMC, and ways to move ahead as a Conference. Pastor Sharon will be preaching at the Service of Ordination on Saturday, June 15, at 7:00 p.m. Watch at www.dscumc.org.