Pentecost: A Wild Goose Chase

Celtic Christians (Christians in the British isles during the Middle Ages) had an arresting name/image for the Holy Spirit–referring to It as “An Geadh-Glas”… or “the Wild Goose.”  To/for me, it’s a great name/image for God… and the Life He inspires through the Spirit.

The title of a Mark Galli’s book conveys a strong sense of what I am saying. Jesus Mean 
and Wild: The Unexpected Love of an Untamable God: it speaks of a God who is a “maverick,” a God who refuses to be domesticated to our smaller images and hopes and desires, a God who is (as C.S. Lewis described Aslan the Christ image in Narnia) good but not safe!

But our wild goose of a God also informs a wild goose of a life. Actually, life is a wild goose — whether we like it or not, whether we affirm God/Spirit or not. What Christianity does is affirm that it is so (i.e., that life is a wild ride).  But, as important, Christianity encourage us to trust that the wild goose God and His Life are our best bet for navigating this wild goose world!

On this Pentecost Sunday, then, I affirm the wildness of life… and I acknowledge the wildness of God. But, as much, I celebrate the “wild goose chase” at the heart this day. Oh, not the goose chase we imagine, mind you–where we ache to get our hands on God. Quite the contrary! Pentecost, you see, declares the awesome promise of a wild Goose God who never tires of chasing us… and tagging us for His fullest Life and Living!

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