From the Rector’s Study
Pentecost living water
May 31st, 2020 Psalm 104:25-35, 37 John 7:37-39
“Out of the believer’s heart shall flow rivers of living water.” John 7:38
So the living water is the Spirit of God within us. This is the sense of being beloved and finding living water with us.
This seems to be about finding and discovering our passion, or in other words, what gets us up in the morning?
Austin Farrer, who was an Anglican Priest and Oxford scholar who died in 1968 preached a Pentecost sermon, where he says that the heart of Pentecost is spontaneity. The disciples learned from Jesus and then he left them with the spirit, rivers of living water.
This must be a time of spontaneity, a time to be moved from within, a time to stop being dutiful, well disciplined children, a time to stop asking, “what ought I to think, what must I do, what is expected of me?” a time to begin saying, “Come, Holy Ghost.”
(Auston Farrer, “Pentecostal Fire,” Said or Sung: An Arrangement of Homily and Verse(London, 1960), pp. 102-105. & Thanks to For All the Saints, Copyright © 2007, General Synod of the Anglican Church of Canada, pp. 538,9)
This is the beginning of the church. At this time perhaps it means finding a new way of getting in touch with our passion. This means finding new ways to care for self and others. And someone said on Monday with the beginning of openings that they were feeling more stress than eight weeks ago approximately. What they went on to say is; at the beginning the decision was easy, no choice, stay home and stay safe. The problem now with the gradual reopening is; more difficult decisions, do I go out to shop there? Do I give permission to my children to gather with others? In other words we will have to make choices on our own about what we will do and not do as we move beyond closing completely to a gradual and hopefully safe reopening with rules and precautions.
In other words; this is another new beginning.
As the psalmist says: You send forth your Spirit, and they are created; *
and so you renew the face of the earth. Psalm 104:31
The easy response to this is, with us in isolation, the earth is being given a well-needed break.
I would like to leave you with a positive statement, but a question comes to mind for us as individuals and community; how can we be spontaneous at this time? How can we get in touch with and live out the Spirit of God within, the rivers of living water? Bringing good news to the world at this time without seeming preachy and offering shallow clichés?
Maybe it suggests that not only the earth is being renewed, but if we get in touch with the living water within, it may mean getting back in touch with a reality which transcends the ages, it is not so much what we say but what we do which will cause people to be encouraged. Let us continue to live out who we are as members of a community of faith and continue to pray and support one another as we have been.
Your may have other thoughts about this,
And you can e-mail me if you would like,