There are many expressions that say ” life has changed.” “The new normal” is one of them. The term originated with Hospice to give the sense that although life will never be the same as it was before someone passed to the next life, life proceeds in another way. Further, “the new normal” relates that although we never “get over” losing someone significant in our lives, it is possible with time to live on.
The Acts of the Apostles 2:1-11 in the Christian scriptures demonstrates a sense of the “new normal.” Jesus died and was no longer with his family, friends and followers in a physical sense. Nevertheless, Jesus promised to be with them. Jesus did not explain exactly how he would be with them.
Then the day of knowing came. “They were all in one place together.” Confusion set in. Initially they spoke in different languages. From there the scriptures use images to explain an interior transformation and awakening. Something profound took place that allowed them to seek understanding, compassion, empathy. The Spirit of God came to them–like a strong, driving wind filling the house. Life as they knew it changed. They understood one another. Their hearts opened to new realities all around them. This is the event we know as Pentecost.
The scripture passage points to a new way of seeing: differences in race, language, religion, way of life do not have to divide. Rather differences become treasures in life. With the help of the Divine and opening our hearts and spirits, we come to cherish diversity and differences. Misunderstandings give way to common ground.
Regardless of race, creed or way of life may we be in one place together seeking newness of life, peace on earth and an end to envy, jealousy, division and hatred.
Our invitation is to embrace newness of life.
Blessings and peace,