The "Sneaky" Power of the Spirit
It was a big day in the Webster house last Friday, my 14 year old, Joanne, was Confirmed. For any non-Catholics out there, the sacrament of Confirmation is the sacrament where the individual accepts responsibility for their faith and chooses to say "yes" to God and the Church. They "confirm" the promises their parents and godparents made on their behalf at their Baptism. Just as God sent the Holy Spirit to the apostles at Pentecost, He sends His Spirit to the Confirmed to help them on their lifelong faith journey.
Yesterday I asked my daughter if she felt filled with the Holy Spirit different after her Confirmation. Her answer..."no, I feel normal." Sigh, did it not work? Shouldn't she feel forever changed, cleansed, on FIRE for the love of God? Yes, the Holy Spirit can definitely strike like a lightning bolt, knock you off your horse and blind you with His power and strength. Many of you may have felt the presence of the Holy Spirit that strongly in your life, at times I have too. But mostly...He is sneaky, quietly working in the background.
The "sneaky" Holy Spirit is who I have experienced the most in my life. To explain, maybe I need to tell you a little about me as a child. I was a quiet, scared little thing always hiding behind my mom. I observed life, not fully participating in it. Often awkward and shy around others, especially new people. Anyone who knows me as an adult is laughing themselves silly reading this. I am soooo not shy or quiet and would be considered an extrovert. I love meeting new people and putting people at ease. Did this happen overnight? No, it was slow but definitely powered by the Holy Spirit. I remember my mom telling me I started to come out of my shell after I was Confirmed. At times I was very aware of the Holy Spirit giving me strength in certain situations, guiding me through obstacles. At other times, only in looking back, did I realize the Spirit had a hand in helping me to get through a scary moment or...high school!
So, am I worried my daughter didn't have a "lightning bolt" experience at her Confirmation? No, I have no worries the Holy Spirit will do His job and quietly guide her on her faith and life journey. I'm also confident He will knock her on the side of the head a few times too. I just need to have faith in Him and put my daughter into His hands. And what powerful, sneaky, hands they are.
Come Holy Spirit, fill our hearts, enkindle in us the fire of Your Love.
Peace and Joy,