Aldersgate, I can’t even begin to tell you how much I missed you. I also have to admit that I’m a little nervous about being back in worship and particularly to be preaching after being away. At the same time, words cannot begin to describe my appreciation of all of those who covered so much while I was on sabbatical. As you will hear, particularly at our June Common Table gathering, the sabbatical was good, hard, encouraging, humbling, informative, a little scary, empowering, and personally really challenging. It was also filled with God’s grace. More to come.. .Now on to this Sunday.
It is Pentecost this Sunday, a time to remember God’s power; a defining moment for us as Christian disciples. Given the sabbatical, I plan on taking the message in a bit of a different direction. We’re not having different languages reading the biblical passages, nor will I be forcing the lay readers to pronounce all of those difficult names. I won’t even be dealing directly with the overwhelming nature of the wind and fire, although those will come into the conversation. I do, however, want to talk about “languages,” but not in the way you might imagine. Instead, I plan to look at the languages in which we already engage; languages that are spoken, sometimes in words, but more often in deeds, as a response to Christ. These too are Godly languages; languages that often define or redefine us, and cause in us a response. These are the languages of love. You’ve dealt with many of them over these past seven weeks. Look back on the two Mission Sundays, hearing about mental health and the need for a safe place, the sharing done last week on Mother’s Day, the words of love shared by Vince and Rich Lang, Laura and her care for you, the quilts for the confirmands, and so many others we may not even think about. Each of us possess a language of love; a language that is our own; a language that can and does change lives. So let’s explore that this Sunday. To prepare please read the first and second chapters of Acts.