by Nicole Meyer
Happy Birthday to you! Happy birthday to you! Happy Birthday, Dear Church! Happy Birthday to you! Will you be singing this with me on the final day of May? It’s Pentecost Sunday this year. Pentecost is a historical, holy day that commemorates the descent of the Holy Spirit and celebrates the birthday of the church. You can read the story in Acts 2 to discover that they were all gathered together. There was no cake with candles, but there were definitely flames and the Holy Spirit was the gift; the biggest gift of all. A cacophony of languages were spoken, yet all were understood.
That first Pentecost was definitely not a typical party. This year, our own celebrations look very different. Maybe you’ve had a birthday party replaced with a Zoom date or car parade. Some of the kids at online Sunday School marveled with me that they haven’t left their homes in over six weeks. How unusual that they are making history by going nowhere! Spreading God’s love to our neighbors looks like staying put, to keep everyone safe.
So how will you celebrate Pentecost this year? Bake a cake? Wear red? Light a candle or build a fire? Fly a kite or inflate some balloons? Learn to say something in a different language? Whatever you do, or don’t do, the good news is that the Holy Spirit is with you, all around you and inside of you. The church remains. God’s power has no replacement God’s love is not postponed. As we creatively figure out life together apart, God stays with you; each of you. May you know you are filled with the Holy Spirit, no matter where you are. Happy Birthday!