A Time to Speak – Come Holy Spirit

One Saturday morning Sarah heard a knock on the front door. When she opened the door she saw a tall, thin, bearded man who was wearing a long white robe. It was Jesus Christ himself!

Nervously she invited him in and had him sit down in the living room. He explained that his visit was a part of God’s new marketing plan for renewing the church. One Catholic family from each part of town had been selected at random, and Jesus himself would live with them for a year. 

Would this make any difference in their lives and those of their parish?

Sarah, of course, agreed to host Jesus and quickly prepared the guest bedroom for him to stay. “If you need me, just call on me,” he told her.

The next day Sarah’s oldest child woke up with the symptoms of the flu. As she prepared to take him to urgent care, she remembered that Jesus was in the guest room. Knocking on the door she said, “Come Jesus we need you.” Jesus stepped into the child’s room touched the child and said a short prayer. The child was healed instantly.

On the following day, as Sarah was starting to think about what to serve for dinner, she opened the refrigerator and realized her supplies were few. She grabbed her keys and headed out the door. Then she remembered Jesus. 

Once again she knocked on his door and said, “Come Jesus I need you.” He walked into the kitchen, opened the refrigerator, and said a blessing over the food that was there. It began to multiply, and within a few minutes Sarah had more food than she needed for dinner.

I will let you imagine what happened the other “362” days of the year and how this affected Sarah’s parish. Of course everyone who talked to Sarah wanted to find out how they could get Jesus to stay with them.

End of the fairy tale. Too bad God doesn’t work this way.

Well, guess what? He does! Do you remember what Jesus promised right before he died: “I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate to be with you always, the Spirit of truth. … I will not leave you orphans … the Advocate, the Holy Spirit … will teach you everything.” 

This promise is almost too good to be true. God’s plan was even better than the “marketing” plan I described in the beginning.  His followers would have an advocate, helper, teacher, guide and comforter who would be with them just as he had been, and this Advocate would not be crucified and leave them, but will be with them always.

If what Jesus said is true, then the Advocate must be available even now. The obvious question is “How do I get the Advocate to live in my home?” The answer is simple — be baptized. And if you want an even more powerful presence of the Advocate, be confirmed. 

But, we say, “I’ve had both these sacraments and I don’t experience the same kinds of things that Sarah did.” Hmm, I wonder what the problem is.

How many times a day do you knock on the Holy Spirit’s door and say “Come Holy Spirit I need you?” None? Well, then, that’s the problem.

When is the last time you drew power from the “Holy Spirit account” that was set up for you at Baptism and doubled at Confirmation?  It’s not complicated. We access our account by saying “Come Holy Spirit.”

What a neat Lenten practice this would be.

Bob Garvey is a member of St. Bartholomew Church and Catholic Charismatic Renewal.

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