Get Ready for the Whoosh!
Last Thursday we were celebrating Christ going home to Heaven (Ascension Day) and our Sunday Gospel is part of His great prayer at the Last Supper praying for His disciples and for all of us, who because of their witness, believe and have faith in Christ today. His prayer was for the help and Helper we would need. The help and the Helper He and the Father would send. The help and the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whose help will get us home to Heaven too, by bringing us Grace. Jesus the Christ has ascended and now the disciples are waiting for the ‘whoosh’ of the Holy Spirit.
I bought a new ‘toy’ a week or so ago (hence the idea of ‘whoosh’), it’s a pressure washer to clean the paving in my back garden, the car and the like. It’s great fun but you have to hold on tight and point it in the right direction otherwise everything and everyone gets soaked. Jesus has Ascended to Heaven and, as it were, to turn on the hose and let the Holy Spirit bring the flow of Grace. That Grace to inspire, that Grace to encourage, that Grace to stand firm, that Grace to share our faith, that Grace to persist in prayer and self-discipline, that Grace to grow as a disciple of Christ and lead others to find and know Him, Grace to follow our vocation in life, whatever that may be. That ‘whoosh’ of the Holy Spirit comes out strong and in all kinds of ways, as we will hear in the Sunday readings in the coming months and as we can read in the lives of the Saints and, yes, know in the lives of many of those we sit alongside in St Mary’s.
The instructions said: ‘Point the hose where it needs to go!’
The Holy Spirit wants to do something new and creative in all our lives, whatever our age, old or young, and all in between, helping us and others get to Heaven, while making a ‘Heavenly difference’ here.
The Apostles show us by their example how to handle the Holy Spirit’s ‘Whoosh’ by first holding on tight, tight to our faith, tight to the Church, tight to our prayers, tight to the words and instructions of Jesus and when the time comes (God willing very soon!) receiving and making good use of the SACRAMENTS, so that we are listening to Him and be pointing in the right way for the Grace He brings to be most effective and beneficial.
Like me and many others with ‘new toys’, we so often don’t read or listen to the instructions and so get in a mess and get things wrong. And so, with the Helper Jesus and the Father wants to send us to help us on the journey of life to Heaven, let’s pay attention to the instructions Jesus gave to His Apostles and Our Lady, to Wait, Listen and remain Faithful. Remember Jesus always tells us to ASK for the Graces we need, then faithfully to wait, watch and listen for the ‘Whoosh’, as His Holy Spirit comes, often in the most unexpected ways. He is the God of surprises after all!
With every blessing in this exciting Season.
Fr David Jones, OLW