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  • Writer's pictureAllison Wilcox

Crossing Over: Spirit

And just as he was coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens torn apart and the Spirit descending like a dove upon him. And a voice came from the heavens, “You are my Son, the Beloved; with you I am well pleased.” ~ Mark 1:10-11



There is another place in the Gospel of Mark that something is torn apart: the temple curtain as Jesus dies on the cross.


It is as if God is violently ripping apart all the ways in which we separate ourselves from the most Holy One.


And here again God rips apart the heavens to make God's self known.


In this moment, it is just for Jesus. It is for Jesus to know that he is loved: that he is not alone as he goes forward with his ministry.


The image of the dove - so gentle, so peaceful - coming down violently through the torn apart sky is a wonderful image of the Spirit of God.


The Spirit can comfort but also can shake us up. She can move us to a meditative peace, or she can urge us to act for God's justice in the world (there is a long history of referring to the Holy Spirit as "she").


  • What are the ways the Spirit has comforted you?

  • What are the ways in which the Spirit has shaken up your life or moved you to act in the interest of another?

  • What image of the Holy Spirit is most helpful to you?



Shake me up, Lord, so I can be a mover of peace in your world. Amen



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