and something to do with communication.
What is your relationship to poetry?
Perhaps as a student you were forced to memorize and recite a poem or poems you didn’t like.
Or perhaps you write your own poems,
your inner visions spilling onto a page.
Do you love a song or a rhyme
that won’t let go of your mind?
Getting any grasp on the character of our God requires a bit of poetry, a bit of creative thinking or visioning. Christians believe in the One God, yet not a simple motionless god that can be pinned down, but rather a God Who is in action, relating at once to our past, present, and future; Who is involved and involving; Who plants the seed, nurtures the process, and enjoys the fruits....
This coming Sunday is traditionally a day when the church brings together the story of God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, Three in One, celebrating the mystery of the Threeness within the Oneness, the mystery Christians call the Trinity:
‘tri-’ (meaning three) + ‘unity’ = Trinity.
That word Trinity does not occur in the Bible, yet Christians very early came to speak of our God in terms like these.
The traditional creeds of Christendom talk about “three persons” who together are One God:
“I believe in God, the Father, the Almighty,
Creator of heaven and earth.
I believe in Jesus Christ, His only Son, Our Lord.”
“I believe in the Holy Spirit....” (Apostles’ Creed)
The United Church of Christ’s “Statement of Faith” talks about how the Three Persons of God relate with us: “He bestows upon us his Holy Spirit, creating and renewing the church of Jesus Christ, binding in covenant faithful people of all ages, tongues, and races.”
The Scripture passages that lay out for us the mystery of God the Three-in-One can be very poetic, even in English translation from the Greek:
If the Spirit of Him (Romans 8:11)
Who raised Jesus from the dead
dwells in you,
He who raised Christ from the dead
will give life to your mortal bodies also
through His Spirit that dwells in you.
When the Spirit of truth comes,
He will guide you into all the truth;
for He will not speak on His own,
but will speak whatever He hears,
and He will declare to you
the things that are to come.
He will glorify me,
because He will take what is mine
and declare it to you.
All that the Father has is mine.
For this reason I said
that He will take what is mine
and declare it to you. John 16:13-15
Graphic art, as well as geometry and mathematics, has power to illustrate a vision of God the Three-in-One. This figure is one example of a “triquetra,” a shape demonstrating both threeness and oneness:
You, beloved of God, notice the blanks around you, and fill them with a love-letter to your Creator, Redeemer, and Sustainer.