When we say that something is good, we mean that it is useful and does the job for which it was intended. A good car is reliable; a good novel is interesting to read; a good job is one we enjoy and can do well.
In Acts, Barnabus was called a good man. This is explained; he was full of the Holy Spirit and of faith. He did not try to run his own life but asked the Holy Spirit to guide him. He was useful in the job God had given him; he shared Jesus with others.
Faith is the gift of the Holy Spirit living in us. Faith is fed by God’s Word. Through the Spirit’s life in us, we are made useful to God in the life we live. Like Barnabus, because of the Holy Spirit we hear God’s Word and have the power to live as people who serve and care for one another.
The festival of Pentecost and is the beginning of the Pentecost season of the Church Year. This season flows right through until Advent, the season of preparation for Christmas. During Pentecost our attention shifts from belief to practice, to living what we believe. Pentecost reminds us that living our faith daily depends upon the guidance and inspiration of the Holy Spirit, the same Spirit God granted to the Church on the first Pentecost day.
A DAILY PRAYER
O God let this be my prayer every day. Keep me from thinking any critical thought. Keep me from blaming others for anything. Keep me from being resentful. Keep me from saying or thinking any hurtful thing about anyone. Help me today and every day to think good and do good regardless of what anyone else may say or do. Spirit of all power and goodness, quiet my mind. Help me to be still enough to hear your voice. Help me to stop worrying and fretting. Help me to stop rebelling against circumstances. Help me to be like Jesus. AMEN.
(Everyday Prayers for Teachers, Dimensions for Living, 1993)
Neil P. Schiller