Learning a New Language

“All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues (languages), as the Spirit enabled them.” Acts‬ ‭2:4‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Hola! Beinvenido! Beinvenue! Gutentag! Huanying! Annyeong! Welcome to Pentecost, a season for all tongues!

Ever learn, or try to learn, a new language? Best to start at an early age because it gets more difficult when you get older. You may have heard the old joke that if you speak three languages you are trilingual, if you speak two, you are bilingual, and if you only speak one, you are American. But did you know that although half of the world’s population speaks 23 languages, there are actually 7,151 languages spoken?

I know a few words in several different languages, but not enough to have an intelligent conversation in any of them (Actually I’m still working on English). I can say, “hello, thank you, how are you, and where is the bathroom,” in Spanish, French and Korean – you know the essentials.

So, what language does God speak? On Pentecost, the people learned a new language. It is the language that all humanity can understand. It transcends all dialects, regions, nationalities, and ethnic groups. It is the language that speaks to the heart of human need and brokenness. It is the language that clearly translates God’s love for us all.

South African president Nelson Mandela said, “If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.”…speak a new language so that the world will be a new world.”

Another African proverb says, “If you want people to understand you, speak their language.” The Good News is that God sends the Holy Spirit to speak to your heart about God’s love for you. Even better, we don’t have to learn this new language. You just have to listen and let the Holy Spirit fill your ears, heart, mind, and soul.

Tomorrow we celebrate Pentecost, the birth of the Church sent out to speak a new language.

Come and see,

Pastor Rob

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