Sem. Cesar Ian Granada
Last Semester, I took up the subject; God: One and Triune.
Before entering the seminary, all I know about the Holy Trinity that it was the greatest mystery of our Faith, which talk and even discourse of the Trinity always fall short as we are limited by our finite minds to grasp the whole reality of God. It impressed upon me a tremendous pressure and fear how I can study such a sublime mystery and dogma which our Christian Faith is anchored.
With this in mind, I prayed hard that I may understand the course; I even researched the professor who can teach it in a very light and understandable way. As the semester unfolded and the first day of the course came, our professor lovingly assured us that we should not feel wary of the task ahead of us.
Our professor reminded us that studying the Holy Trinity, we are invited to call to mind and reflect on God’s action in history up to this time of ours. Thus, my fear was turned into joy as I marvel and thank God for all our history are not without a loving God who became one of us and continues to journey with us today.
The reading this Sunday reminds me of one important lesson in Trinity. The Bible speaks of God, not solely to prove that God exists but rather, it speaks how God reveals its nature and attributes to Israel, the chosen people.
Before, any talk of God is always in the veil of mystery and awesome grandeur of a transcendent God. The chosen people are not allowed even to pronounce the name of God openly and have devised other names to safeguard the holiness of God’s name. But God is not a God of the heavens only. The first reading tells us this clearly who this God is. “The LORD, the LORD, a merciful and gracious God, slow to anger and rich in kindness and fidelity."
We all know how God intervened in the life and history of Israel, how God showed his mercy and steadfast love in a people whose faithfulness in the covenant is always broken and oftentimes lacking. Despite Israel’s lack of confidence and faithfulness to God, God continued to offer love, mercy, and blessings. As one author captures it beautifully for us, “God does not prove himself, he shows himself.” God is mercy and love, and it endures forever.
The second reading continues the same theme of God’s revelation from the Old Testament. In the Old Testament, God promised the people of Israel that they will experience God’s presence and mercy generation after generation. God did not stop there.
In the fullness of time (Eph. 1, 10), God became human; the Word became flesh. God is with us; Emmanuel (Mt. 1, 23). Jesus showed us humanly how God loves us; the Father sent the Only Begotten Son that whoever believes in Him will be saved and have life to the fullest (Jn. 3,16ff). The God who cannot be seen, touched and heard; became one of us, flesh and bones, finite and mortal, except sin.
The Triune God, at this point of history, has revealed the Son. God became a human person; weak, fragile, and finite - to show us that God’s love will not stop at anything and will even offer God’s Son to bring us and all of creation to God’s bosom.
This is a very beautiful analogy and example for all of us. As the Father showed us the love He had for us, the Father also expects the same love from us. No matter what our situation is, in poor or plenty, in joy or sorrow, God’s delight and happiness is found when our hearts are burning in love for the Triune God. Jesus told us that whoever loves him and obeys his word, the Father and the Son will make an indwelling in the person’s heart (Jn. 14, 23).
If the grace of the Triune God dwells in us, we too are impelled and disposed to be united in love and mercy to all of creation. This is the communion God revealed how Jesus and the Father are one in the fellowship of the Holy Spirit. Therefore, we are called into unity despite our differences and uniqueness, to live out that communion we profess and believe.
The Holy Spirit, comforter and advocate for us to the Father in Jesus Christ, was revealed by Jesus as another Paraclete who will help us live out the life in union with God. The New Testament is full of testimony to the power of the Holy Spirit. From the conception, life and ministry of Jesus, to his passion, death and resurrection, the Holy Spirit filled Jesus to do God’s will. Last Sunday, we just celebrated Pentecost, where the promised advocate will be with us until Jesus comes again in glory.
From the first Pentecost to our time today, the Holy Spirit moves and re-creates us to remember always the great and wonderful acts of God in our lives and in the history of humanity. Our lives then is no longer a mere existence from birth to death. This life is meaningful, full of love and relevance. We were created in the image and likeness of God. Redeemed and sanctified to be sons and daughters of the Father, redeemed by the Son, and sanctified by the Holy Spirit through our baptism.
St. John Eudes, our spiritual father, reminds us of our dignity as children of this Triune God. Through Baptism, we are made children of God through the merits of Jesus, the Son of God. By baptism, we become part of the Mystical Body of Christ. We are grafted in the vine where Jesus connects us to the Father who is the source of all our life and being, and by the Holy Spirit’s power we are endowed with the grace of freedom to do good and freedom from sin!
By Baptism, we are made one with the Father, as Jesus prayed, “That they may be one as we are one. With me in them and you in me, may they be completely one.” (Jn. 17, 22-23) As we celebrate the Solemnity of this great mystery of the Triune God, may we reflect our love and devotion to God? Where are we in our personal relationship with God; with Jesus? Like the Father, are we ready to give up the world and any attachment in order to love God more intimately and passionately? As the Triune God is united in love and joy of the presence of each other, are we persons of joy and love that unites people and creation in our presence? Do we love others as God loves them?
“The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with all of you. “
^_^, Ian Granada