THE HOLY SPIRIT AS FIRE, WIND AND WATER
Just as it happened with the first disciples, so too for us, the coming of the Holy Spirit is bound to shake up our lives. Many of the images used in scripture describe the Holy Spirit evoke a sense of power – often a power beyond our control. The Holy Spirit is both a fire that burns (Sirach 48:1; Matthew 3:11; Catechism of the Catholic Church [CCC], 696) and a wind that blows like the breath of God (John 3:8-9; CCC, 691). The Holy Spirit is the “finger of God” that both drives out the evil one and imprints God’s word on human hearts (Luke 11:20; 2Corinthians 3:3; CCC, 700). He is the “water of life” that floods into our lives at baptism and that continues to flow, inviting us to be caught up in His current (John 7:37-39; 1Corinthians 12:13; CCC, 694).
The Holy Spirit is fire, water, and wind. All these images speak of God’s desire – and His power – to release us from sin and fill us with His life and love. When He was on the earth, Jesus prayed: “I came to cast fire upon the earth; and would that it were already kindled!” (Luke 12:49). How Jesus desired to reconcile us with the Father and so open the way for the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts! Without His death and resurrection, there could be no Pentecost: there could be no body of Christ; there could be no indwelling Spirit. Prior to Jesus’ coming, the Holy Spirit was at work, hovering over creation, inspiring various individuals, and advancing God’s purposes for His people. But now, because of Jesus, the Holy Spirit has come to transform the world as He transforms all our lives.
Jakarta, 24th of May 2013
A Christian Pilgrim