Saturday 25 May 2013

TRINITY SUNDAY - Three in One and One in three

To read the texts click on the texts: Prv 8:22-31; Rom 5:1-5; Jn 16:12-15

Trinity Sunday might also be termed Mystery Sunday. This is because the focus on this Sunday is solely on God, and God is a mystery. The meaning of a mystery is that there is something about it that we can know, but there is also a great deal about it that we do not and can never know.  Even a cursory look at our ordered world makes us aware that all that is in it has surely come from the hand of a God whom we call Creator. As a matter of fact the first reading of today makes this very point. We can also know who God is through the revelation that Jesus Christ has made as Paul points out in the second reading of today. However, even as we do know something about God it is always important to realise that God will continue to remain a mystery and that there is a great deal that we do not and can never know about God because our minds are too finite to know the Infinite God. Much as we try to understand and define who God is, we keep in mind that we will always fall short. As a matter of fact the more we try to understand the more we realise that we simply do not know. This does not deter us. Rather it makes us keep wondering about the mystery of God. We as Christians are fortunate that God has been revealed to us in a unique manner in the person, mission, death and resurrection of Jesus and that much of what we know of God, is through the revelation that Jesus has made.

The first reading from the Book of Proverbs includes part of this revelation when it introduces Wisdom as both part of the ordering of the created universe and its delight. Just as creation is both intrinsic to God and an expression, delight is intrinsic to the relationship within the Trinity as well as its effect. The reason for the choice of this reading is to show that Jesus as Wisdom is both the love and delight of God.  Toward the end of her life, Julian of Norwich penned this short but profound exchange which can be regarded as a summary of the first reading: “Would you know your Lord's meaning?” she asks. “Know it well, love was God’s meaning. Who showed it to you? Love. What did Love show you? Love. Why did Love show it? For love.” God is love and only love.

This is also the love that Paul speaks of in the second reading of today when he tells the Romans and us that God’s love has been poured into our hearts because of Jesus Christ and the Spirit that Jesus gives. This love made manifest on the Cross by Jesus Christ is a love through which a new relationship is established between God and the whole of creation. It is a love that is unconditional and given freely and a love which helps us to endure all and any kind of trial and tribulation.

The ability to undergo trials is because the Spirit that Jesus promised his disciples and gave them is a life giving Spirit. It is not something given at a moment in time but continuously and constantly. The gift of the Spirit ensures that those who believe in Jesus will not be left alone but will always have help and assistance. It is an indication that God’s presence in Jesus will be with the community of disciples always.
This constant presence of the Spirit of God made manifest in Jesus is an indication that God is not for the Christian one who is merely Creator, but also Redeemer and Sustainer. God is Father, Son and Spirit and Almighty God, Word made flesh and Comforter. God is past, present and future. God was, is and will be. God is all and in all.

Even as this eternal presence of God with us and for us is true, it is also true that three persons one God indicates community, unity and inclusiveness. God does not exist in isolated individualism but in a community of relationships. In other words, God is not a loner or a recluse. This means that a Christian in search of Godliness must shun every tendency to isolationism and individualism. God is found in one’s heart but also in community and in relationships. Since God is present in the now and in the world, it is right and fitting to find God in all things and all things in him. Thus, the ideal Christian spirituality is not that of flight from the world away from contact with other people and society but an immersion into the world with a view to transforming sorrow to joy, injustice to justice, negatives to positives, darkness to light and death to life. It is a spirituality which seeks to transform fear into love.

Since love in Universal, there is no one who is outside the kingdom of God. There is no “us” and “them”. There is only “we.” And we are all connected and interconnected. Yet, though the Trinity is united it also embraces diversity. We are not required to be the same. We can be different and yet united, we can be different and yet one, we can be different and yet integrated. We are asked each of us to offer our unique gifts for the good of the community. We are not asked to all be the same. There is unity even in diversity. There is oneness even in difference. There are three persons yet one God.

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