The coming of the Holy spirit!

A tangible reminder!

I really appreciate Pentecost, and the reminder of the power of the Holy spirit, to cleanse and refine, to strengthen and to inspire. We need the holy spirit so much in our lives.

Last weekend was so busy, but God kept speaking to me of his spirit, as I kept encountering pigeons. These are not exactly the same as doves I know, but I kept meeting them in different places. It was like God has been reminding me that His Holy spirit is at work in so many different ways, way beyond my imagining.

Recently, as the covid 19 restrictions have lifted a little, I have been able to reconnect with different individuals and communities. It has been so heartening to see first hand the great work different groups have been doing in the community, and to remember that there is still so much good in the world.

I am so grateful for God’s holy spirit at work, comforting people, guiding people, inspiring art, dance, singing, meditations and so many creative ways of expression. The holy spirit stirs up the people of God to express the love of God in so many beautiful ways, even in the midst of heartache and sorrow.

One of my readings today was from psalm 89:1 ‘ I will sing of the steadfast love of the Lord ‘and that gift of thanksgiving and praise is so powerful. When we sing of God’s goodness, then we sing this melody out to the whole world and to each generation. This is one of the ways the Holy spirit works, not just at Pentecost, but every day. My prayer is that we all find our own way of singing about the steadfast love of the Lord, so the whole world can also join the song.

Gracious God, Father, Son and Holy spirit, thankyou especially for Your Holy Spirit this day, and for the way your Spirit works to challenge and to cleanse, to comfort and inspire. Forgive us when we have lost our way, and our hearts have been hard. Soften our hearts, that they might be tender hearts of flesh, full of love for You and for others. When we are hurting, bring healing, and in time may we trust again. Lord Jesus, may Your spirit help us to hunger for your word, and to seek Your will, and to use our gifts of creativity for You. May we be open to see your holy spirit at work in our midst, so we might marvel, hope and praise You every day, for Jesus’ sake, so the whole world might hear of Your transformative love, Amen.

Healing of identity!

Discovering our true self.

I had a birthday this week, a lockdown birthday, which I guess has become quite distinctive. They are characterised by not being able to meet all the people you would like to, and a sense of poignancy as a result. We are all grateful to be alive, and we know keeping the rules keep people safe, so that is a small sacrifice to make. But it still feels very different.

I have been very blessed however, because there are so many ways of keeping in touch with people. And this year, it has been wonderful to be in contact in different ways with people. And actually co writing ‘Love song for a wounded warrior ‘ has been part of that process, because I have been able to reconnect with lovely people I had lost touch with, or not spoken to properly for years. It has been healing to explore shared memories of different adventures that we experienced in the past.

And so, one of the things that seems to be happening in my soul, is a healing of identity. It has been healing to connect with people, and hear their stories. It has also been amazing to remember parts of my life that were at the circumference of my memory, and to bring them back into the middle.

And this has been so significant because I think when I was a carer, I completely lost sight of who I was. Just dealing with the day to day stresses and medical needs of Colin, working full time, and being a mum, meant that I didn’t gave much space to exist, to make a decision, to know that I had choices. I wonder how many other carers are like this, where your identity gets completey eroded in caring for someone else. I am not complaining, that was what seemed best, to fulfil all the roles I had, to love unconditionally. However now I look back, I recognise that part of myself died. Now I am beginning to realise that I need to ask God to bring possibilities of renewal and resurrection.

Knowing who you are, is a profound question. It changes and evolves over time. I love the Ignation concept of becoming your best self is to be fully alive, the one that God has fashioned us to be. The quest is how to rediscover this, to ask God to put the fragments back together in some form of wholeness.

Many verses remind us of our identity with God, ‘ you are all children of God through faith in Christ Jesus’ Galatians 3:26. We are beloved children of God, which is breath taking. A song by Jason Gray ‘Remind me who I am’ also speaks of the rediscovery of identity, of love and purpose. It is an important quest for each of us, especially if we might have lost our way through the pressures of life.

Let us pray, Gracious God, sometimes our lives seem full of jagged pieces, bits of a mosaic but with no discernible pattern. We repress painful memories, we get overwhelmed by trauma and weariness, and we feel lost and broken. In the messiness, You come to us Lord Jesus, to forgive, to hold and heal, and to remind us who we are. We thank You that we can trust You. Please bless all those who care for others, may they be supported by kindness and support and respite. Holy spirit, recreate our identity, as Your precious children, and give us courage to explore our freedom our gifts, our path forward, in Jesus’ name, Amen.