Friday, May 24, 2013

Breaking the Busyness

“Bidden or not bidden, God is present.”
-- Desiderius Erasmus

It has been almost five months since I last published an entry on this blog. When I began to think about re-starting regular blogging, I logged into this blog and found that I had started three posts in the last several months but had never finished them! My excuse could certainly be the fact that I have been occupied (some would say preoccupied) with the potential combining of Holy Spirit Episcopal Church in Campbell and St. Edward's here in San Jose into one new church on this campus. It seems as if the flurry of emails, meetings, discussions, announcements, and events--not to mention the uncertainty that prevents future planning--has moved me from church business to church busyness!

As we think about Trinity Sunday--the only feast day of the Christian year named for a doctrine rather than a saint or an event--it is worth considering how God manifests in the world. The Trinity is a way of explaining how God, who can be experienced in three different ways, is nevertheless one. I suspect any number of my colleagues are going to tie themselves up in theological or homiletical knots attempting to "explain the Trinity." In light of the above, my thoughts go a different direction, asking the question: "What if God showed up and no one noticed?"

God is already present in our world. The creation narratives talk about God's Spirit hovering over the waters of creation. The Old Testament repeatedly witnesses to God's redemptive power and love for God's people. As Christians, we believe that the culmination of God's presence with us was in the person of Jesus of Nazareth who lived, died, and rose again. We believe that God empowered the church with the Holy Spirit to witness to God's ongoing presence, power, and love for the world.

And yet we are often too busy, to preoccupied, to notice that God hasn't left the building.

At its best, Trinity Sunday is not simply a Sunday for preachers to demonstrate how well they can explain the unexplainable. It is an opportunity for us to acknowledge the fact that we cannot fully describe God, point to God, and certainly cannot explain God. And yet we believe God is there. Now we just need to pay attention to that fact and open ourselves to the unexplainable.

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