“God declares, ‘I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh.’” (Acts 2:17, adapted)
God is a Black woman.
If that statement gives you pause, use that pause to consider how damaging and dehumanizing an exclusively white male God has been to nonwhite, nonmale-bodied people for millennia.
If you are a white, male-bodied person (like me) consider how a God made primarily in our image is the foundation of white supremacy and dominance. Consider how diverse images of God dismantle that and testify to the expansiveness of divine being.
Today, Pentecost Sunday, is sometimes called the birthday of the Church. If the Church was born on Pentecost, that means the Holy Spirit did the birthing, making this passage one of the most powerful and overlooked scenes of the sacred feminine at work in Scripture.
The Church she birthed represented various cultures, tribes, races (Elamites, Medes, Egyptians, Libyans, etc.) and genders, reinforcing the point that she can show up in anyone. The newly hatched church folk were so surprised by their own diversity, onlookers assumed they were drunk.
Peter explained it wasn’t alcohol that was poured out, but a different Spirit entirely, one that fills every expression of humanity to the brim, making every face the face of God.
Thank you, Mother Spirit of Pentecost and of the Church, for looking like me, and like her, and like them. Amen.