Recently I listened to an interview by Krista Tippett, "On Being," with Congressman John Lewis (originally broadcast the end of March 2013). The interview was so moving that I immediately bought Lewis' book, Across That Bridge, Life Lessons and a Vision for Change.
Both the interview and the book conveyed Lewis' DEEP faith and his profound belief that the kingdom of God is already here, we just need to live into it. Every act of social justice is a step toward making real - within us and the world - the reality of God's kingdom which is ALREADY present!
"Faith is being so sure of what the spirit has whispered in your heart that your belief in its eventuality is unshakable..."
Pentecost Sunday strikes me as the perfect day to celebrate this reality - that God's dream that all people have the means to live fully and equally because we are all made in God's image, made good to do good IS already a reality, all we have to do is live into it.
For me, this is what the Book of Acts ultimately conveys to us: in the giving of the Holy Spirit and the formation of the Church, God's desire that all creation love one another as God love's us is already a reality.
Lewis makes note of the training that Rosa Park's received prior to that fateful day when she refused to give up her bus seat:
But of all the phrases I could quote in this very moving book perhaps my favorite is this African saying:"The new theology (Miles Horton) studied posited that faith should respond not only to the ethereal needs of humanity, but it should have a holistic impact on the lives of believers and on the communities in which they lived. If faith had power, he declared, then its ability should be challenged to answer even our physical and material concerns and not be reserved for religious services and activities. If faith had meaning, its benefits should accrue not only after death, but it should have the capacity to answer the cries of humanity here and now..."
"When you pray, move your feet!"
On this day when we celebrate the birth of the Church, what aspect of the Holy Spirit is tugging at you? Where are you feeling called to move your feet? What text is the Holy Spirit whispering in and through your heart?
This is the 11th Hour Preacher Party. Let's dance together through this day as we seek the words to speak into the cries of humanity and remind our people, as we make a wish and blow out the birthday candles, that
"Life is like a drama, and any person who is truly committed to an ideal must believe in the authority of a divine plan. Not a rigid, micromanagement of human behavior that predicts every step of every individual, but a set of divine boundaries that governs the present, the past, and the future—a set of principles humankind does not have the capacity to override, no matter how far we attempt to stray from its dictates."
Pull up a chair, here's a mug...would you like coffee or tea? And, thank you ALL for the gifts of your presence that you bring and share with this party.