Faith Is Having An Experience Of God

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

I studied several courses in the seminary, and before as a lay man, on the Holy Trinity.  I can honestly say that I remember almost nothing other than a few basic ideas.  On a retreat earlier this year the organizers gave us a questionnaire on the action of God in our lives.  I was rather confused about how to answer those questions until someone said the following:  how has God acted as your Father, what did God the Son save you from, and how did the Holy Spirit guide you?  Then I wrote down many things: how God helped me with the dementia of my mom, how I was saved from a superficial and flat life, and many sins, and how I was led back to the Church, and then to the priesthood and also to persevere in this vocation.  I will never forget that weekend or how these experiences of God came alive for me.

Faith is not knowing about God or about the Trinity but having an experience of them and of his love for me. When you have an experience of God’s love, you have an experience of the Trinity in your life.  One doesn’t act without the other.  God is love so he has to be more than one person or he would only love himself.  There has to be others within him in order to be a communion of persons, which means there is a relationship of love between them.  It is a ‘good news’ to hear this, and even more to have an experience of it.

The first reading overflows with good news.  Moses is saying to the people how could we have a God who created us and did everything for us?  How could we have heard God speak to us and we can still be alive?  How could we have a God who made us a nation and took us to himself, and freed us from the slavery of Egypt?  Moses says these events, and many more, are things we have to put into our hearts and reflect about them.  They will lead us to always stay faithful to the One who loves us.

In the icon about the three men who visited Abraham and predicted the birth of his son Isaac within a year, we can see an image of the Holy Trinity.  The icon is done in a way that it is open to us.  We can sense that we are sitting at the same table.  Also, for some years there was a small mirror attached to it so that the observer would see themselves within this image of the Trinity.  This is where we find ourselves.  Hopefully, we see that we are immersed in this reality of the love of God for us.  We are made in his image and likeness.  We are made to love like this.

In the cross we can also see the Trinity.  The Father gave us his only Son and said do with him whatever you want, and they did.  He gave us what was most valuable to him and he did it only for love of us.  Jesus doesn’t judge us.  Even with those who killed him he said to his Father to forgive them for they do not know what they are doing.  Through the Son’s death, resurrection and ascension we also have been given the Spirit so that we would not be afraid.  When we have the Trinity inside of us, we can love and forgive in this way.

God doesn’t call us sinners and demand that we change our ways.  First, he loves us and enters quietly into our lives, and then he starts to put things in order.  He loves us first and then he transforms us, little by little.  He fills us with his joy and peace.

There are many small acts that can remind us of the Trinity each day.  Perhaps you make the sign of the cross before each meal and say a short prayer, or hopefully you cross yourself when you wake up and when you go to bed, and make the sign of the cross on the foreheads of your children or grandchildren at the end of the day.  All of these occasions can help us to see that God is close to us, inside of us and lives is us.  Don’t forget to ask his help and acknowledge his presence.

The Blessed Mother visited St. Bernadette in Lourdes, France eighteen times, when she was fourteen years old.  What she remembered very well and copied was how the Virgin made the sign of the cross.  Years later people were very touched to see how devoutly Bernadette crossed herself, which must have reminded her of the Trinity, and of Mary.  Mary’s month is almost over so it is good to finish it well for she is the one who can lead us easily to her Son.


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