So many times we shudder at the thought of the Holy Trinity. What a great mystery! How I can I fully understand what even St. Augustine could not fathom? How do I explain what I am unable to fully understand?  For many people this is a feast that displays our ignorance and incapacity before God.

Part of coming close to the mystery of the Trinity is knowing the doctrine. We cannot be true Christians if we don’t at least know the basics of this doctrine.  …and believe it with all our hearts. It’s not easy, though, please don’t give up. Don’t be deceived. The Holy Trinity – One God in Three Persons – is not primarily about doctrine. No! It’s action, experience, love of God.

The Trinity is about love. This was how the world came to know of the Trinity. This was how Jesus explained it in words and in actions.  This is the best way for our minds… and most of all, our hearts, to experience it today and always.

Jesus is the teacher of the Trinity. If he did not reveal this mystery, we would never known it.

Jesus always explained that God was Father overflowing with love. He is the Father of his people Israel; the father of the new Israel, the Church. He is the Father even of non-Israel, those who turn their backs on him.  God is best pictured as the unbelievably compassionate father in the parable of the prodigal son – hugging his lost son, bringing him back to his feet, assuring him that he will never be a slave but always a son.  What a father, and God is precisely this to us.

Jesus also said that he is the Son of this Father. And he came to the world to do the Father’s work – forgiving, healing, caring, encouraging, transforming.  Jesus is the Son of God who “loved me and gave himself for me” (Gal 2:20). He lived the truth of the Father’s love in the way he lived, and in the way he died, loving us “to the end” (Jn 13:1). If you accept that God is the Father of love, then it is easy to understand Jesus as the Son who loves just like him.

Jesus also pointed us to Another, a Consoler, a Spirit who will come. But this Spirit is not just an invisible breath or wisp of air.  This Spirit revives hope in the fearful, lonely people. This Spirit teaches us how to pray when we are unable. This Spirit reminds of all that Jesus and his Father did for us.  The Spirit brings us now into their presence so we can continue to experience love.

The Trinity is this continuing experience of living, true and endless love that flows from the Father, the Son and the Spirit.  Don’t be bothered by the number puzzle, or how to explain a mystery. Instead, allow God’s love to enter your life and fill you with joy!