Today is Trinity Sunday. We celebrate God’s family – God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. Just as we belong to a family, so does God.
Every time we make the Sign of the Cross we are saying and showing that our God is a dynamic family of three persons.
St. Bernard of Clairvoux in the 12th century said it so graphically and so beautifully – The Father is the Kiss-er, the Son is the One Kissed, and the Holy Spirit is the Kiss They Share.
I find this to be such a simple and marvelous thought – God loves us so much that he gives us a Kiss – Jesus. How wonderful a good kiss makes us feel. And the power of the Kiss is the Holy Spirit – alive in us.
On this Father’s Day I think of the young boy who was consistently coming home late from school. His parents warned him that he must be home on time that afternoon. Nevertheless, he arrived home later than ever. His mother met him at the door and said nothing. His father met him in the living room and said mothing.
At dinner that night, the boy looked at his plate. There was a slice of bread and a glass of water. He looked at his father’s full plate of food and then at his father, but his father remained silent. The boy was crushed.
The father waited for the full impact to sink in. Then he quietly took the boy’s plate and placed it in front of himself. He took his own plate of meat and potatoes and put it in front of his son. Then he smiled at him.
When the boy grew up to be a man, he said, “All my life I’ve known what God is like by what my father did that night.”
Advocates of “tough love” who believe in raising a child with strict discipline, might argue that the father was too easy to his son. But the boy grew up to know what God is like.
God accepts us as we are. Those of us who were blessed to have a father like this no doubt relate to God the Father the same way the boy did.
This is how we come to understand the Trinity. You and I are made in the image and likeness of God – Father, Son, and Spirit.
No matter what else the Trinity means, it means that God is in a relationship, just like us. The Trinity is not a mathematical question. It is not even a theological question. The Trinity is a Valentine question.
God’s image is written into our very nature. God’s image is coded in our brain cells and burned into our hearts. We are who we are because God is who God is.
Every time we search for a soul-mate, a companion, a friend – we reflect the image of God.
Every time we give a hug, a kiss or an act of love – we reflect the image of God.
We say that the Trinity is a mystery and it is. But the deeper we look into our lives on this Father’s Day, and the deeper we live our lives – the less of a mystery the Trinity becomes.