Most Holy Trinity (Year C) June 12 (Proverbs 8:22-31; Psalm 8; Romans 5:1-5; John 16:12-15)
God is described countless ways in the scriptures, confirming that God cannot be contained by a single image or symbol. Ancient sources do not use the theological precision that modern people are used to and can sometimes seem inconsistent or contradictory. This can be confusing for some. The divine language of scripture inspires the sacred imagination of the reader or listener, revealing the depths and activities of the divine.
We know that the main modes of self-revelation of God are creator, redeemer and sanctifier. Although there are three distinct persons in the Trinity, each shares all of these activities. In the passage from Proverbs, the Wisdom of God—Lady Wisdom—speaks in the first person, revealing that she has always been at God’s side, even before creation. Wisdom participated in every step of creation, acting as a craftsman or master worker and beloved companion of God. The theology of the wisdom tradition views creation and humanity in very positive terms. In this passage, Wisdom rejoices not only in the created world, but in all the children of Adam.
Wisdom was often associated with Jesus in the New Testament (Luke 7:35) and He is called the wisdom and power of God in 1 Corinthians 1:24. In the first verses of the Gospel of John, the Logos (Christ) is described in similar terms — as the architect of creation and God’s constant companion. Wisdom/Jesus originates from and perfectly reflects God the Father and is also imprinted in all of creation. For New Testament writers, Wisdom is holy and is a gift from above, and should not be confused with human forms of “wisdom.”
The Wisdom of God is the inspiration and presence of Christ and is generally at odds with the wisdom and values of the world. To follow the path of divine Wisdom is to travel the path of enlightenment and salvation.
Romans teaches us that true peace and righteousness with God come from living in faith. Faith is understood as trusting and surrendering to the guiding grace of God which is given by Jesus. But God is not done with us, because creation is an ongoing process. It is through life’s sufferings, struggles and setbacks that we are increasingly restored to the image and likeness of God. We learn patience and endurance, and our character is molded and shaped. It is not something we can accomplish alone or on our own. We have the courage and strength to persevere because the Holy Spirit pours God’s love into our hearts to transform and renew our souls and rekindle hope.
It would be wonderful to have an open channel to God and a constant spiritual guide and teacher by our side. Jesus left his disciples with good news: it is certainly possible. Possible, that is, for those who want to abide and abide constantly in Jesus and live in the Spirit. Jesus has not finished teaching us—He has barely begun. Jesus promised that he would send an advocate and a spirit of truth to dwell in the hearts of his disciples and in the community. The Spirit would lead them into all truth, even truth they could not yet bear. This Spirit of truth is his continuous and personal presence. The Spirit can only enter into hearts and minds that are open and prepared to receive it.
Jesus insisted that he shared with his disciples all that the Father had revealed to him. This was part of the promise he made to them in John chapter 15 when he invited them to a relationship of friendship rather than bondage.
We agonize and fight amongst ourselves over religious, spiritual and life issues – and come to many conflicting conclusions. Perhaps it would be more fruitful to still the mind and enter the temple of the heart where the Spirit of the Lord dwells — and listen. The advice we receive can be surprising and confusing, because the truth that Jesus grants is not necessarily a confirmation of our own opinions and beliefs. We can be taught as much or as little by God as we choose.
Can we handle the truth?