Worship Companion – May 23 2021

It’s another special Sunday in the church calendar! Pentecost Sunday!
Title: Veni Sancti Spiritus [Click for larger image view]

Adam Kossowski, 1965

Come Holy Spirit! This beautiful mosaic above says those same words in Latin. Over 2000 years ago a special even happened which sometimes gets called “the Birthday of the Church” – the event when Christ’s followers were no longer relegated to waiting in an upper room, but sent out in the power of the Holy Spirit to continue the work of Christ, just as He foretold before He ascended (Acts 1:4). In our worship companion we’ll take one more week to deviate a bit from our preaching theme to focus more on these important events that we take time to celebrate each year. Have fun digging into Pentecost Sunday below!
Our Theme from Philippians this week:
“Say It Again” Paul is reminding the Philippians this week about the ways the enemy was trying to attack the early church, and his tactics haven’t changed much since then. Legalism and “earning” your righteousness instead of trusting God’s grace were issues that swirled around the early church just as they threaten us today. While the specific issues facing Paul’s friends, such as circumcision, are not topics we see as important in our present state of culture – there are other ways legalism and “add-on” items to the gospel threaten the purity and simplicity of our faith today. What do you think some of those could be?
Rather than living by the Law which we are too weak to uphold, it is fitting this Sunday that we recalled we are to live by the Spirit (Romans 8:13).
Anchor Passages:
The Theme for Kids:
I couldn’t resist putting another Lego video in for the kids (and the kid in all of us) this week. This time, Father Black has an interesting experience at a certain Swedish furniture store that leads him to reflect on the story of Pentecost.

For a slightly more extensive telling of the story for kids, you can check out this animated short below:

The Theme in Song:
There are many worship songs that highlight the coming and sustaining power of God’s Holy Spirit in our lives. The bridge of this song is an important prayer and reminder for each of us: “Let us becoming more aware of Your presence, let us experience the glory of Your goodness.” Amen! Thank you, Lord for the gift of Your Spirit who is in us and goes with us.

The Theme in Art:
I used this particular piece of art in a worship companion before, but I thought it was fitting to do so again this week. This series of paintings called “Jesus Mafa” was made as part of a missionary effort to reach the Mafa people of Cameroon. The paintings depict people in familiar garb and appearance to the Mafa people, much like our tendency to portray Jesus and his companions are much “whiter” than they were!
This particular painting about Pentecost is so joyful, so full of light, and I think it sets our minds into the right frame of mind for pondering the events of Acts 2:1-21.

Pentecost – Acts 2:1-4


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