At Pentecost we celebrate that the Holy Spirit came to live in us.
What has often disturbed me about that is that we continue to fail dismally at living right. Surely the Spirit should equip us to know better than to sin and to be better at living?
But then, we should not divorce the Holy Spirit from Jesus Christ. Doing so will always lead to misunderstanding of God, and to a misrepresentation of ourselves.
Remembering that God’s greatest saving act was to raise Christ from death, changes how we see our broken lives. The Spirit’s coming results in our own resurrected lives. Life in the Spirit means not so much that we have succeeded to put an end to our sinning. It does mean that having sinned, we are not doomed to be stuck in the mess. And while perhaps we are still not as good at life as we should be, the Spirit ensures that we never give up trying. Because living again is possible.
Having faith in Christ is to believe that we too are resurrected, to know that there is a way to go on after failing horribly at life. Without the Holy Spirit we would have had none of that.
So? Never give up: start over and come alive. That’s the miracle we need. That’s the difference the Holy Spirit makes. It’s in giving up that we die. Don’t. Have yourself a life! That’s what the Holy Spirit is all about.
The International Christian Maritime Association prays for God’s blessing upon all its members at this time of Pentecost.
Reverend Hennie la Grange
ICMA General Secretary