The Day of Pentecost
Begin your devotional time by praying this prayer: Magnificent Creator, you are always with us, even when we have a hard time feeling your presence. Help us remember that everything on earth, the birds, bees and trees are all a reminder of your love for us. Amen.
Reflect on the Way of Love together: This week’s practice on the Way of Love is GO. Pentecost was a party giving thanks to God for the abundance of the harvest. What are some ways that we can go out and celebrate the blessings that God has given us?
Adult and Small Child
Reflect: Pentecost was a special Jewish feast that celebrated the harvest. In this reading, all of Jesus’ friends and followers had gathered in Jerusalem to celebrate this special feast. While they were together, amazing things happened that helped them know it was time to go and spread the message of Jesus and God’s love to the whole world!
It can be fun to tell this story with props. Each person can have a flame cut from red construction paper and you can fold another piece of paper like an accordion to make a paper fan. Use the fan to create a great wind while you tell the story of disciples filled with the Spirit and hold up the construction paper flames over your heads.
Respond: Pinwheels are fun toys that catch the wind and catch our attention! That makes them a great decoration for Pentecost! This week go out and take a Pentecost pinwheel walk with your household! Bring along a pinwheel – here’s instructions to make a simple pinwheel at home. Every time the wind catches the pinwheel, stop and look around. See if you notice something that reminds you of Jesus’ love for you. If it isn’t very windy, take turns blowing your pinwheels to make them spin and then use that moment to stop and look around for signs of God in the world! The Holy Spirit is always with us to help us go out to notice, remember and share God’s Love!
- Katy Seitz Denning
Adult and Elementary
Reflect: During my Girl Scout meetings, we would sing this song, "The more we get together, together, together, the more we get together, the happier we'll be!" That song reminds me of Pentecost. Today is Pentecost Sunday! It is the church's birthday! There were many people gathered in one place and the Holy Spirit came upon everyone. Something powerful happens when the people of God are unified. The next time that you have the opportunity to go to church, take note of the feelings you have as everyone sings and prays together. Let's be happy together! Praise the Lord!
Respond: You will need some red, orange, and yellow construction paper for this activity. First, draw a picture of yourself. Next, cut out triangles of red, orange, and yellow. Glue the colorful triangles onto your self- portrait. You've just made a picture illustrating Pentecost! The triangles are tongues of fire! If you can, display the picture somewhere in your home.
- Imani Driskell
Adult and Youth
Reflect: It’s Pentecost! The word Pentecost literally means “fifty.” In the Bible, the Jewish people would gather fifty days after the Passover for the Festival of Weeks. Today, we celebrate Pentecost as the “birthday of the church” because the Holy Spirit came to the apostles and all those gathered from many different places. The Holy Spirit appeared to the disciples just as Jesus had promised when he said he would send his presence. This presence allowed the disciples to go forth and begin to spread the good news of Jesus to all the world.
Respond: What do you think it was like to be in the room on Pentecost when the disciples began speaking in different languages? Would you have been totally freaked out or in complete awe? Take a moment to be creative today and express what was seen on Pentecost. Maybe choose to use words and write it down or tell a story. Paint a picture or make a collage with different colored paper. What colors or words do you feel represent the joyous occasion that is Pentecost?
- Lauren Wainwright
Adult and Adults
Reflect: Having participated in citywide heart walks, hunger walks, and men’s health runs over the years, I’ve enjoyed observing the anxious anticipation that participants experience before the race and watching the various ways they respond to that nervousness. There are always the serious runners and walkers who stretch, do wind sprints and twist their bodies this way and that. There are others who quietly walk around seeming like they’re asking themselves why they committed themselves to this upcoming torture. Then it’s time to go, and the race starts. Not soon enough for some, the actual event is over and the participants are crossing the finish. After the event there’s noise everywhere: the loudspeaker at the finish line competes with shrill calls for water and hydration and on top of it all; amidst the panting there is the excited laughter of participants. And the languages! It seems like there are people from everywhere! It’s a scene of multitudes “all together in one place,” like what I imagine the writer of Acts is describing for us.
Respond: How would you speak to a large number of people so that they all understand your message? Try writing a letter to family members, residents of your neighborhood and business associates of varying ages and who have varying backgrounds, experience and/or opinions. A single message written to the multitudes - how do you think it would be received? What could you do to guarantee it’s received as intended? How would all the recipients realize it’s time to go?
- Mallard Benton