Dear Kind and Gentle People,
Happy Season of Pentecost! Here at “The Mill” all nature is singing praises to our Creator. The birds awaken me about 4:45 a.m. with a symphony of praise. Last evening the approaching strawberry moon was as brilliant as the noon day sun. Petah will be howling out the second-floor window and letting the sound resonate over the “Mill Pond” when it is full on Saturday evening. The creative energy of nature and the mysterious power of the Divine is revealed to us in so many ways. Take the photo of this lovely yellow iris by my harp sculpture and kettle of yellow violas.
A while ago a dear friend of mine, Catherine, phoned me to ask if she could come and die at my house. My response was that she could certainly come to my house; however, the Creator I serve was a God of Healing and Light. Six months later she left after receiving much prayer and healing. She gave me six of her prized yellow iris bulbs -- I call them Catherine. I was with Catherine, years later, when she made her transition, but it was not related to her previous death sentence. I mention this because each year I am able to give away oodles of prized iris bulbs.
The Universe diligently reminds us to receive her abundant plethora of gifts with thanksgiving. Today’s litany includes the gift of a friend, a beautiful flower, sounds of feathered friends and, of course, sunlight and moonlight to bask in. People, do be mindful of these simple and majestic gifts that complement the gifts of the Holy Spirit (prophecy, healing, miracles, faith, knowledge, wisdom, tongues, interpretation of tongues) that the lectionary presented to us last week.
The Newfield Community Church celebrated Pentecost with a musical call to worship, “Veni Sancte Spiritus,” from Jacques Berthier’s Taizé June 2023 literature. (Do click on the YouTube link.)
Our tiny congregation came together, uniting to create beautiful sound with the pitch center maintained by old Grandfather Timpani. Mere words cannot express what unfolded as the congregation fully embraced this gift of music with open hearts and fullness of being. Indeed, we were all transformed **** and knew it!!!
I agree with Deon Johnson who wrote that, “Come Holy Spirit is a dangerous prayer because it means that we must be open and vulnerable, willing to be challenged and changed so that we can seek and find Jesus in the ones we serve. Come Holy Spirit means that we must become open to the transforming power of God in our lives. It means that we will find ourselves standing with those on the margins, on the edges, on the outs.”
Are you willing to embrace this dangerous prayer? Are you willing to be transformed beyond your wildest imagination? What would a new/fresh outpouring of the Holy Spirit look like in your life and how dangerous would it be to your current way of being in the world? Might your life be transformed like Catherine?
There is no disputing the truth that my friend Catherine was transformed by the power of the Holy Spirit during her journey here on Mother Earth. Each year, her Yellow Irises give me a fresh reminder of such power and possibility! The tiny Newfield Community Church was transformed while being immersed in the Sacred Sound of the human voice and a hybrid language of Latin and English and of course Grandfather Timpani keeping the tonal center.
As we prepare to celebrate Trinity Sunday or Unity Sunday and embrace the season of Pentecost, may we be open to the leading of the Holy Spirit and the limitless possibilities that are bequeathed upon us. Let us live the awesome results of the dangerous prayer, “Come Holy Spirit.”
Gobs of Blessings and Heaps of Happiness.
Rev. Dr. Peter Stickney
UCC Musicians Association
P.O. Box 370631
West Hartford, CT 06137
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