My church was really rockin’ the red this morning!
A bulletin notice last week reminded the parishioners to wear red to celebrate Pentecost and show solidarity. Fully three-quarters of the congregation sported a crimson shirt, a scarlet necktie or a cherry-colored dress; the presider swept down the aisle in red vestments to symbolize the arrival of the Holy Spirit to the apostles huddled in the Upper Room. What a joyful and festive way to end the Easter season!
But why red, I wondered. Then I thought:
Red is bold: it’s the color of the cape the toreadors wave at a bull to spur it into action.
Red is intense: it’s the color of the Indian pepper called Naga Jolokia which rates over one million Scoville units. (Oh, go Wikipedia it: never hurts to learn a few scientific facts while reading a religious blog, hmm??)
Red is eye-catching: it’s the color of those octagonal traffic signs at the intersection with the white letters spelling S-T-O-P, which here in Jersey is pronounced “pause then roll through”.
And our faith is red as well. It’s the color of the blood Christ shed for us in order that we might be saved and inspired by his loving deeds. To be his truly inspired disciples, as were those flame-christened men two thousand Pentecosts ago, we should gird ourselves in red, especially where it really counts: on the inside. His gift of the Holy Spirit gives us the inner strength to boldly and intensely go forth and preach, or stay home and minister, or serve as an example in the workplace or at school. Resolve to let your demeanor, your faith, your life be bold, eye-catching and soul-inspiring.
No matter what you wear….Keep rockin’ the red!