Ahhh…summer. There’s no season that brings back more nostalgic memories of my childhood in Philadelphia. Three months of cookouts, Mister Softee (Google it), and double-dutch…it doesn’t get better than that! But the ultimate, most enjoyable part of my summers were without a doubt, block parties. For those who have no idea what I’m talking about, a block party is when an entire street (block) in a neighborhood is turned into a party. People park cars at both ends of the street to stop traffic. Every stoop is full of talking women braiding hair. 20 grills are all smoking simultaneously with the most delectable of meats. A game of roughhouse or 21 is in play on handmade basketball courts (a bottomless milk crate nailed to a light pole). And 50 kids are playing in a fire hydrant that was “inexplicably” turned on somehow.
It was a beautiful scene…but that’s not what I loved most about it.
What made me teem with excitement at the prospect of a block party was the music and the inevitable dance-off. If you wanted to participate and didn’t want to look completely foolish, you needed to come to the block party with a routine to a particular group of songs. That way, when the song came on the radio, you (and your dance crew) would be ready. For me, and most of my female peers growing ups in the late 80’s, there was one female music team that was always in our repertoire…Salt-n-Pepa.
Setting aside the nature of their lyrical content and the question of why an eight-year old girl, such as myself, knew their songs by heart, the fact is that they were pioneers of Hip Hop sound, dance, fashion, and culture. And their music was great for dancing. But wait…aren’t we missing someone? That’s right…Spinderella. She was the DJ. It was her sound that carried the Salt-n-Pepa lyrics and rhythm into the minds, arms, legs, and hips of every dance enthusiast. She had a very important role. So why do I always forget about her?
As I was contemplating this, I was reminded of the Holy Spirit. WAIT! Don’t stop reading. I am NOT putting Spinderella on par with the Holy Spirit. What I am trying to convey is that sometimes the way my mind processes the Holy Spirit is similar to the way it processes Spinderella. In the Christian faith, we learn from the Bible that God is a three-part community in and of Himself, a Trinity. The Holy Spirit is the third member of the Trinity. I know this and, by faith, I believe it in my heart. But a funny thing happens in my mind. When I think of God, when I pray to God, when I speak of God, I almost always default to God the Father and God the Son (Jesus Christ). It’s not that I completely forget about the Holy Spirit but He’s often (too often) an after-thought in my contemplations about God. It’s like sometimes my mind just automatically dissects the Trinity into a Duet and a Soloist. But why?
Well, I don’t know about anyone else but I would say a big part of why this happens is that I have not been educated as much about the Holy Spirit. Prior to being a Christian, I had only heard of people “catching” the Holy Spirit which, to be honest but not insulting, was unsettling to me when I witnessed it. When I became a Christian in my twenties, the focus was always (and it should be) on Jesus, the Son of God the Father, being Lord and Savior. I am not blaming anyone for my ignorance back then. I had a Bible. I could read. And I have read and learned a lot about the Holy Spirit since then. I am just pointing out that my first education about God did not include the Spirit with the same breadth and depth of the Father and Son…it came after. And to this day, sometimes my mind follows the same after-thought sequencing. It’s improved over the years but it still needs work.
So here’s the plan. For the next couple of weeks, the Monday SyncUP articles and the Weekly SyncUP Devotional Guides are going to be all about the Holy Spirit. Here’s an outline of each weekly theme:
- Week of July 11th – “The Third Person” – Who is The Holy Spirit
- Week of July 18th – “Person Inside of Me”- The Church’s Relationship with the Holy Spirit
- Week of July 25th – “The Messenger” – The Holy Spirit’s Worldwide Mission (and Our’s)
If you haven’t already, SUBSCRIBE to SyncUP today to join me on my journey.
Now that you have finished reading it’s time to SyncUP with God. SUBSCRIBE and receive access to the “Weekly SyncUP Guide”. It provides 5 daily guides on scripture reading, reflection questions, life application steps, and prayers to help you have your own daily SyncUps with God for the rest of the week.
DON’T FREAK OUT…if doing all 5 this week is overwhelming, set a goal of 2 or 3 and work your way up from there. Enjoy and God Bless!