A few years ago, we were blessed to spend the week before Shavuot with our Bubbe Janna. She illustrated so well the heart of this Holy Day to our children through a simple helium balloon and the story of Ruth.
You will need at least 2 people for this activity, either 2 friends or 2 siblings, or a parent and child plus 1 Helium Balloon per pair.
The lesson is that we were meant to live in community and to “hold onto” one another in life just as Ruth clung to Naomi and wouldn’t leave her side. We were not intended to live life alone. When we cling to the Holy Spirit, we are pulled together in unified community.
In Yeshua, we are not meant to live life alone without the help of the Holy Spirit, our comforter. John 14:16 NKJV “And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever—“ and Hebrews 10:25 NKJV” 25 not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.” Followed by Galatians 3:28-19 “28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.29 And if ye be Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise.”
So we have our pair. The balloon is set between them and they need to squeeze the balloon between them so it won’t float away but without holding hands. We illustrate that we are created to help one another and have fellowship with one another. But we don’t stay connected unless we draw close to God through the Holy Spirit. As we press into God, and physically press into the balloon representing the Holy Spirit, we are able to walk in unity together as the Holy Spirit leads.
When we believe in Yeshua we receive the presence of the Holy Spirit—the helium filled balloon. Just like we need to hold onto our friend and partner and not walk apart from them, we need to hold onto and cling to the Holy Spirit by abiding in Yeshua and His word. If we walk away from and let go of our friend, It doesn’t make our friend less present or real. In the same way the Holy Spirit is always there available for us and waiting for us, but if we stop abiding in Yeshua and let go of the spirit (let go of the balloon), then it’s not the Spirit that has left us, it’s us that has left the Spirit. The Spirit is there waiting for us to take hold of Yeshua and live boldly in our faith and walk out our faith in the power and authority of the Holy Spirit.
It is a simple yet beautiful illustration of our relationship in the body of Christ, and to each other, and with the Holy Spirit that is so wonderfully celebrated on Shavuot.