On each of the last two Sundays, we heard stories from scripture in which Jesus heard the words of the Spirit, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.” The stories suggest a voice that rang out with clarity. As we listen for God’s guidance in our lives, the voice is not always as clear or convincing.
Nonetheless, as our Mission Statement suggests, we are invited to listen for the guidance of the Holy Spirit as discern how we are to respond to Jesus Christ’s call to be a disciple.
I know that my call to ordained ministry did not come as a result of one clear voice or vision, but rather from an accumulation of voices – from friends, mentors, and others, as well as the interior and repeated promptings I was hearing in my own heart.
As I or others at St. John’s invite you to consider engaging in particular ministries, I hope you will be attentive to how the Holy Spirit is moving in your life. Yes, sometimes coincidences are just coincidences. It is also true that there are times when we cannot ignore the number of people who have addressed us about a particular gift we have that could be shared; it is more than a coincidence. The Spirit also may be speaking to us when we have a thought or impulse to offer ourselves, especially if we keep tucking it away but keeps returning. The Spirit may be speaking to us when we hear an invitation and discover a strange combination of fear and joy stirring in our hearts.
This week, there are several invitations below for ministry, here and beyond the parish. I hope you will hearing in them whatever the Spirit may be saying to you as you consider how to respond.