Ministry in the Spirit is supposed to be life-giving, at least as much as it is life-taking. This is not how generations of clergy have been trained to approach our calling. I remember years ago, when I was speaking on this topic, an older clergy leader stood up and said, in essence, "Ministry for me was something I was expected to do- it never even entered my mind that I was supposed to enjoy it."
The sad thing is, we may well end up obeying the calendar and not the living God, the wind and breath of life, the Holy Spirit. We may end up satisfying the expectations of everyone except the Holy Spirit. Instead, that is the one thing we have any hope of doing. That is the one thing we really have to worry about.
Don't miss what is meant for all. Even though so much divides us, the mark of the Spirit's presence in Acts is one in which all were blessed in a similar way by the one and same Spirit: "And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit...." (Acts 2:4a)
There is absolutely nothing given about our next breath. Life itself is all grace. Experiencing the first late summer Canadian front whipping its chilly way across Lake Erie is always a thrill! (photo above) Wind recreates, refreshes, renews. Here, at #14, I need to go to where I can experience wind- and remember both the sign and the strength of Holy Spirit's presence within, the Lord, Giver of Life.
Stop at this last Station of Light. For it's here that our journey culminates and begins. Here, we receive our birthright, the sealing of Holy Spirit, and our adoption as God's own sons and daughters in Jesus. And, "receive the Holy Spirit." John 20:22