Message from Margaret…
The Trinity: Lover, Beloved, and Love.
The “Trinity” began as an experience. No one could have gone to the library to research it, or gone to hear it explained in a sermon—or even found it explicitly mentioned in the Bible. The theological assertion at the heart of Christianity—that we worship one God in Trinity of Persons—began unsophisticated, working-class folk encountered a man named Jesus. Was he a rabbi? A prophet? The messiah? The Son of God? Or all of the above? Certainly they did not start out saying that Jesus was god or that God was Jesus.
At first, all they knew was that Jesus was a man who acted like god. He spoke with authority, unlike other teachers. He healed the incurable. He stilled storms. He raised the dead. He delivered demoniacs from their demons. He fed thousands from a mere picnic basket of food. Finally, he died a ghastly death as a refuted seducer of the people only to be raised by the Abba God he proclaimed in a wholly other form that could eat fish and pass through walls and ascend visibly into heaven. So who was he? It would take nearly 400 years for the Church to hammer out the details—that Jesus was fully God and fully human. Nevertheless, it was out of this experience of Jesus—directly with him, and with one another as a circle of disciples-that the believing community came to realize that the word “God” was not adequate to describe the experience of the Holy they had had.
The question persists. How can God be up in heaven, and yet on earth as a human being? Are there two Gods? How can God be Absolute, and yet a finite human being? Is this saying that god is some kind of “transitional” Being? No wonder Augustine, one of the great defenders of the trinity said that he spoke about the Trinity “only in order not to keep silent.”
In the final analysis, the Trinity returns to the experience of love. Augustine also said: “Lest you become discouraged, know that when you love, you know more about who God is than you could ever know with your intellect.” In the trinity-Lover, beloved, and love-you have the basis of Christian ethics, as there is no selfishness in the Godhead.
There is a tree growing near where I love. It is an odd looking tree. About three feet up its trunk, it divides into three narrower trunks from which smaller branches grow. It is one tree, made of the same tree-ness, yet it has a trident shape. It speaks to me of the Trinity—maybe more than the Athanasian Creed. The tree speaks to me of a singular God who functions in three different ways at the same time. God as Creator. God as Redeemer. God as Life-Renewer. When I see it, my faith is strengthened in the Mystery of God over us, God with us and for us, and God in and among us.
Summer Breakfast begins next week. Please sign up for a Sunday. All groups, Foyer Groups, Reunion Groups, etc. are welcome.
Taking a break this week for Memorial Day, but join us next Monday 6:00 at The Place on Harrison.
Please keep the following in your prayers; Lee, Toni, Jane, Elaine, Bobbi, Bobbie, Janet, David, JD, Rita. Lee Ann, Jean, Ruth Ann, Sandra, Nancy, Ann, Janet, Mike, Judy, Janet, Nancy, Jean, Britany, Mary. Sandra, Andy, Polly, Judy, Jonathan, Jessica, Emma, MacKenzie, Tina, Lisa, Lora, Connie, Middy, Kathy, Holly, Vincent, Sandra, Bev, Ann, Donna, Dirk, Cody, Tiffany, Sara, Hamden County Correctional, Northampton, MA., Joseph, Joe, Bill, David, Bobby, Mattie, Colleen, Joy, Ellen, Mary, Gary, Alicia, Mary, Tom, Dot, Linda, Bubba
We pray for our men and women in the Armed Forces at home and abroad; Jeff, Bowe, James, Andrew, Kenneth, Evan, Ryan, Joe, Nate, Richard, David, Brian, Jason, Billy, Mike, Joseph, Colin, Todd, Brett, Jordan
Holy Nativity Episcopal Church English Tea and Fashion Show
222 North Bonita Avenue (In the Cove)
Panama City, FL 32401
Saturday, June 22, 2013 at 2:00 pm
For tickets or for more information, please call the church office at 747-4000.
All proceeds benefit The Council on Aging, The Panama City Rescue Mission, and The Anchorage Children’s Home