Wednesday, 15 June 2011


This is absolutely an off-the-top-of-the-head ramble, just to get my mental cogs turning.
Why shoudl we care about the Trinity when there are 'real' problems in the world which demand our attention so much more urgently. Take suffering. To be specific, let's tek the case of a little boy in one of our villages who is undergoing treatment for a tumour. He is suffering. His family is suffering. His friends are suffering. The whole school community is suffering. (all these to varying degrees, obviously). And in the face of all this not one person has yet asked me to expound a theory of the Trinity. Odd, that.

But (and you were just waiting for that weren't you) I think that how we handle the crises and suffering of life and how we think about God are intimately related.
If we think there is no God, then there is no anguished question 'why?' - stuff happens, people get ill, even little people, and there really is no reason.
But if we think there is a God, we are left with the question 'what sort of God is it that let's a little boy suffer?'.
What do we really think God is like?
If God is the one who is in charge of everything, why can't he just stop all cancer from happening?
Does God actually care about what happens to any of us, or has he created a world, wound it up & let it go, relatively unconcerned about this cosmic experiment?
Or have we got it all wrong & is God not much more than a comforting idea on a cold night?

Whatever else the doctrine of the trinity says into this situation, it says that God is complex, not easily understood, but also both dynamic & active and caring of the fate of humanity.
The God who creates and cares in the Father cannot impassively watch his children suffer.
The God who comes to us and suffers alongside us in the Son will not simply leave us to our fate.
The God who moves among us in the Spirit has power to act, yet not a power which merely over-rides our human condition and our physical laws.
The God who is all three - and yet one - is a God of inter-relationship, complexity, love.
This is a God who is with us in our questioning, but who defies simple answers and straight-forward definition.

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