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Just a spoonful…..

During King Charles’ coronation at the beginning of May, many fantastic items will be used, symbolising the role he will be taking on. The crown, orb, sceptre, sword and throne. Perhaps the smallest, but also the oldest, item used in the ceremony will be the anointing spoon. Dating back to 1349 it will hold special oil used to anoint King Charles – a tradition that dates back thousands of years, the anointing of kings.

Just before the anointing, the Archbishop of Canterbury will pray that the Holy Spirit comes upon the king, giving him strength, wisdom and knowledge, all that is needed to rule well.

At the end of May, seven weeks after Easter, the church will celebrate Pentecost; remembering the day when the Holy Spirit came upon Jesus’ disciples. Jesus had told them to wait in Jerusalem and not to do anything until the Spirit came. They had all been witnesses of the resurrection, met with the risen Jesus, and seen him ascend into heaven. They must have been itching to tell people, but Jesus said to wait. Don’t do anything until you receive the Spirit.

The disciples, many of them ordinary fishermen, needed the Holy Spirit before they could do what God wants them to do. But, equally, King Charles needs the Holy Spirit before he can fulfil his role. That would suggest to me that we all, whatever role we have, need the Holy Spirit if we are to live the life God wants us to live. The Spirit guides us in the right direction, gives us strength to keep on going, and comforts us when things seem too tough.

So, perhaps, as we watch the coronation, when the Archbishop takes a spoonful of oil, praying for the Holy Spirit to come upon King Charles, we could also pray. Pray that the Spirit comes to us, fills our lives and directs us along the path God would have us walk. And if we find ourselves unsure of what words to use, how to pray that prayer. Then we can rest in the knowledge that the “Spirit is right alongside helping us along. If we don’t know how or what to pray, it doesn’t matter. He does our praying in and for us, making prayer out of our wordless sighs, our aching groans. He knows us far better than we know ourselves” (Romans 8:26-27)

God bless

Revd. Chris

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