Grace to you and Happy Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity!
The doctrine of the Most Holy Trinity is “the central mystery of Christian faith and life” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 234). It is the doctrine that God is three persons—Father, Son and Holy Spirit—and one substance (nature). It is the highest doctrine of our faith. In this truth we are baptized (Mt 28:19). Today, inspired by this doctrine, I reflect on the blessing of relationships of love.
God reveals Godself to us creatures. God does not do so in solitary individualism but in a communion of love and sharing. “God is love” (1 Jn 4:8). We come to know who God is in the possible way we humans can grasp with our limited ways of knowing, through God’s revelations to us. And God’s revelations to us, in history as we read through Scripture and in the mysteries of faith we celebrate, is in relationships. Thus, a Christian called to be like God (Matthew 5:48) rejects the temptation to self-absorbing isolationism. To be like God, we have to open our hearts and alms to relationships. We have to love. We have to embrace communion.
Agape love, that distinctive sacrificial love which Christians should emulate from our Lord Jesus Christ, requires three – I, God and you (another). We love ourselves better in the love of God. Our love for one another is made holy and blessed even more in the love of God too. God’s love is the sweet anointing, rejuvenating our love of self and others. In it, we flourish and are most blessed.
We are made in God’s image and likeness. Just as God is God in a Trinitarian relationship, so we can be fully human in relationships. The self needs to be in a horizontal relationship with others and a vertical relationship with God. By so doing, our life becomes Trinitarian like that of God. Then we discover that the so-called “I-and-I” principle of unbridled individualism, which some people live by, leaves much to be desired. If you need a proof of how terrible unbridled individualism could be, see the pains of the health condition of severe depression. No one wants that in one’s life. Depression forces its victims to be excluded and avoid relationships. We pray for healing for those suffering from depression. Amen.
The doctrine of the Blessed Trinity challenges us to adopt rather an I-and-God-and-neighbor principle. By so doing, our entire life becomes a pleasant orbit around God at the center (core) with the warmth of relationships with others. The I-alonismor the me-me syndromedoes not assure us of a long-lasting future. I am a Christian insofar as I live in a relationship of love with God and other people. Actually, this is socially healthier than exclusive individualism.
You may have heard about a 75-year research on real people on what keeps people happy and healthy. The research is considered the longest ever conducted by Harvard University. It is still ongoing as of today. The current director of that research, psychiatrist Robert Waldinger, a few years ago shared some of the results. Based on the findings, he claimed that people who build relationships and keep relationships tend to live happier and longer. Loners tend to die earlier and are unhappy.
I would guess you want to live long and be the best you have been created to be. Tap from the lessons of the Trinity. Relationships are the key to happiness. The finer the relationships, the better. What could be better than building our spiritual core while connecting with our neighbor?
May the grace of the Holy Trinity help us to live in love of God and of neighbor and by so doing overcome self-centeredness. United with Saint Paul, I pray for you: “May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you” (2 Cor 13:14). Amen.
God love you. God bless you.
Fr. Maurice Emelu
[Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity. Readings: Prov. 8:22-31; Rm 5:1-5; Jn 16:12-15]
Author and Goal
Father Maurice Emelu PhD., provides a daily blog of reflections based on the Scriptural readings of the day from the Catholic liturgical calendar. The goal is to teach, inspire, encourage, and foster healing through the grace of God's word. They are written in a language that is appropriate for a general audience. You will find these reflections helpful for your spiritual growth, inspiration, and developing your thoughts. They may also be useful for ministers in preparing their sermons for liturgical celebrations.