JESUS said to his disciples: “I have much more to tell you, but you cannot bear it now. But when he comes, the Spirit of truth, he will guide you to all truth. He will not speak on his own, but he will speak what he hears, and will declare to you the things that are coming. He will glorify me, because he will take from what is mine and declare it to you. Everything that the Father has is mine; for this reason I told you that he will take from what is mine and declare it to you.”
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Some people may regard the Trinity as a theological hair-splitting medieval dogma of no relevance to the ordinary Christian of today. The Holy Trinity is better appreciated in the context of the relationships among the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, and their connection with us.
The three divine Persons must not be seen in three neat and distinct compartments because their relationships intertwine and overlap, and draw us to this divine reality. The three Persons exist before time, but it is only through Jesus that God is revealed not only as Son but also as Father and Spirit.
The Father, known to be the Creator-God, is the head and paterfamilias. He sets the direction for his people and guides them through the journey. He disciplines his children and strengthens them by teaching them to learn from their mistakes. He calls them back to himself each time they wander off. He holds together everything and everyone that he has created and works not to lose anyone of them.
The Son, known to be the Redeemer, is the key in revealing God to humankind. Through his person, loyal and obedient to the Father until death, Jesus gives a human face to God by proclaiming the Gospel, curing the sick, forgiving sinners, healing the wounded, restoring broken relationships, and giving his life on the Cross. Jesus leaves behind his body as food for our journey, and he promises that if we follow him, he and the Father will make their home in us. He promises to send us his Spirit.
The Holy Spirit, known to be the Sanctifier, is thus the fulfillment of Jesus’ promise. The Holy Spirit is the Divine Love formed between the Father and the Son. Through the Holy Spirit, we join in the circle of life and love, endowing us with gifts or strengths necessary for the journey. The seven special graces of the Holy Spirit are: wisdom, understanding, counsel, fortitude, knowledge, piety, and fear of the Lord (cf Is 11:2-3).
Attempts at explaining the mystery of the Holy Trinity take the way of symbols. The Trinity is depicted in a triangle (St. Patrick), three musical notes making up a single chord or sound (St. Ignatius of Loyola), and water is found in three different forms – gas, solid, and liquid.
All these comparisons pale vis-à-vis the great mystery that is God. Our words will always be poor and inadequate. Suffice it to remember that God reveals himself to be a God of communion, who enlarges the divine Persons to welcome us to this great communion of life and love.
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SOURCE: “365 Days with the Lord,” ST PAULS, 7708 St. Paul Rd., SAV, Makati City (Phils.); Tel.: 895-9701; Fax 895-7328; E-mail: [email protected]; Website: http://www.stpauls.ph.