The miracle of the tongues at Pentecost points beyond itself. Those who see it thought that they had been drunk. ‘These men are full of new wine.’ The key is Saint Peter’s reference to prophet Joel, the outpouring of the Spirit in the last days. The sudden influx of the Holy Spirit, like tongues of flame, is the ‘outburst’ of God’s joy. It is the outpouring of the joy between the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit that Jesus’s mission on earth was completed! The miracle of Pentecost is primarily God’s joy, blended with the joy He ignited in us. We can see God’s rejoicing among us.
To this joy corresponds well what Saint Francis de Sales writes on its depths. ‘By all this the blessed spirits are ravished with two kind of awe, first, at the infinite beauty that they contemplate, and secondly, at the abyss of infinity still to be seen within that same beauty. O God, how marvelous is what they see! O God, how much more marvelous is what they don not see.’ (Ch 15, Book III Treatise on the Love of God)
These are verbal Icons, expressions of how the world is seen from Saint Augustine's..