Today’s blog is written by Pastor Ryun Chang.
Spiritual Food for Thought for the Weekend
“Can Anything Practical Come out of the Trinity? (1)
And when Jesus was baptized, immediately he went up from the water, and behold, the heavens were opened to him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming to rest on him; 17 and behold, a voice from heaven said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.”
One reason for our silence on the doctrine of the Trinity is because of its apparent lack of practicality to daily living. It is sort of like: “Just know the formula, 1-in-3 & 3-in-1, so that no one will accuse us of being heretics!” And it’s not like we truly grasp the Trinity either.
Someone wrote, “Even the best metaphors fail to capture the complexities of God’s being. In fact, when Christians attempt to explain the Trinity, they often stumble into metaphors that sound suspiciously like the very heresies Trinitarian theology was developed to counteract! But even if you conquer the intimidating task of explaining the meaning of the Trinity, you may face an even more momentous challenge: demonstrating why it matters”—that is, both theologically and practically.
Well, I don’t recall reading anything practical or devotional about the Trinity until I read the novel The Shack (in 2008), which dealt with a grieving father’s spiritual journey after the murder of his youngest daughter. Certainly, it’s not a theologically flawless book; nonetheless, it shows where we can find both the model and inspiration for unity and intimacy that we all yearn for in our relationships: from the Trinity.
Perhaps nothing captures the unity and intimacy existing among the Three Persons in the Trinity quite like the scene depicted in the above passage: the Son rising up from the water after being baptized, the Spirit descending like a dove to honor the Son and the Father proclaiming, “This is my beloved Son . . .” So united in purpose; so intimate in fellowship.
As I was reading this book, I was drawn to it precisely because those qualities—unity and intimacy—seem to lack in my family life (because of me). How about you: Don’t you want the same? The inspiring model is found in the way the Three persons relate to one another—in unity and intimacy. (More on this tomorrow)
Bible Reading for Today: Acts 14-15
Prayer: Lord, help me to truly embody unity and intimacy that has existed eternally among the Three Persons in the Trinity. Help me to become such a person in my family, work and church. Amen.