Seeking The Trinity...In A Shack

Yes, a shack.

I recently read a great book, The Shack, by WM. Paul Young (fiction).  I got it for less than $10 at Costco - I definitely recommend picking one up!  Like any book, it needs to be read critically and weighed against Truth at every turn.  For the most part though, I found this book to be in line with Biblical teachings...only the story was written in a way that helped me to see God in a new and fresh way.  It helped me to even better understand what I already knew in my head.

For the next few STLS posts, I think I'll be working from this book.  I'll do so without giving away anything about the plot so you can read it yourself if you'd like.

One of the most difficult things to understand about God is the idea of the Trinity, don't you think?  There was an exchange in this book that I found to be so powerful (a conversation between God and a man):

"...there are three of you, and you are all one God?..."

"...We are not three gods, and we are not talking about one god with three attitudes, like a man who is a husband, father, and worker.  I am one God and I am three persons, and each of the three is fully and entirely the one."

"huh?" (love that!)

"What's important is this: if I were simply one God and only one person, then you would find yourself in this creation without something wonderful, without something essential even....Love and relationship.  All love and relationship is possible for you only because it already exists within me, within God myself." (emphasis mine)...Unless I had an object to love - or, more accurately, a someone to love - if I did not have such a relationship within myself, then I would not be capable of love at would have a god who could not love."

This was such a huge lightbulb moment for me!  

Any good thing that is possible for us is ONLY possible because it already exists totally and completely in God.

It seems so simple and obvious!

I admit, I've always thought of the Trinity as something taught by "religion", but totally backed by the Bible.  The Bible doesn't come out and say "Trinity" or "three in one" though, so in the back of my mind I've always wondered just a little... do we have this right?

At the same time, I've completely swallowed the teaching that "God is love" hook, line, and sinker.  

But how could I logically doubt the idea of a relationship existing within God, while fully accepting the idea of God being love?  How can God be love...or have love at all in any capacity...if there wasn't some sort of relationship built into God's very nature?

Now, just to play the flip side for a minute... some might argue that God can love because he has humanity to love... that he made us so that he could have the relationship.

But do you see what that implies?  The assumption in that argument is that God is somehow incomplete without us... that he lacked something before he made us... that he needs us to make him whole.  Is that the God you know?  The great I AM?  

No.  God was full and complete and perfectly whole before making us.  Remember - he made us in his image...not to complete his image.  

And of course, we have to consider some compelling scripture: Genesis 1:26-27.  Many say that when God said "Let us make man..." that he was speaking to his spirit children (basically humans before we came to earth - the LDS church is one organization that teaches this).  Okay.  Seems reasonable, right?  BUT...keep reading:

Then God said, "Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground."  So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. (Genesis 1:26-27)

Look at that!  God says "let us", and who responds?  God!  God creates.  God creates in God's image.  Humans didn't come on the scene at all until AFTER God created them.  What awesome scripture - a gift, really - to show us a thing or two about the relationship that existed in God before we were even created.

We have an awesome God, folks.  Utterly awesome!  I'm so thankful for every little glimpse I get of him this side of Heaven.  

On to more of an administrative topic: Mr. Linky.  I was paying to do the Mr. Linky every week, but my membership expired and I've decided that I'm not going to pay for another year.  Please continue to share though!  Leave a comment with any links you'd like to share.  

Becky Avella  – (5/24/2009 08:28:00 AM)  

Beautiful post, Daiquiri. This was an idea I've known, but the way you put it into words was perfect. Thank you!

I think sometimes we want so much for God to be completely definable, something we in our finite minds can grasp and explain. I'm thankful He's too big for that, to awesome and wonderful for me to completely define with my limited understanding and vocabulary. Yet, He also gave us relationships to show us aspects of Himself, so we could understand Him better, like the husband/wife love/commitment, and the parent/child relationships, and friendship like I have with you. : )

Thanks for a great start to my Sunday morning. There is so much to worship Him for, huh?

Here's a link to my favorite post of the week: can't stop thinking about the race I ran last week and all I learned from the experience.

Love you!

Beth in NC  – (5/24/2009 12:29:00 PM)  

I read the Shack last year and gave a bunch of copies to my friends. :o) I loved it.

I have seen a lot of negative posts about the Shack, but I learned a lot and it caused me to check my own heart in many areas.

What a great book.

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