If someone asked you to describe God, your God how would you do that? You might begin to explain who God is as he is described in the Bible. He is the Creator of all that is. He provides for His whole creation.
You might describe God, your God as a parental figure, either as a kind and gentle Father or a caring and nurturing Mother. You might describe God as the Great Protector or as the One who heals our brokenness.
Or you might tell someone that he is your very own special Friend who listens to all of your joys and trials without making you feel belittled or weak. God, your God may be that special One who reveals his love for you and the world through the scriptures you read in your devotions and hear proclaimed in worship.
But what would you say if someone were to ask you about Jesus or the Holy Spirit? Now that’s where everything begins to get messy and confusing. God is the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. What did you say? How can that be?
Who sitting in the congregation this morning can give an explanation of the Trinity that everyone will, after hearing it, nod their heads and say, “That’s it?” I’ve tried before and my explanation just doesn’t quite make it.
The best I can come up with is the Trinity is the different natures of God as he has revealed himself to us. The best explanation is that the Trinity is a divine mystery that is beyond all human understanding and imagination.
That being said, I believe that we all know and experience God in many various ways. For example I am known differently depending upon who you ask to describe me. Linda would give you one description, Chris, Amy, and Ben would give you another description, and they might vary a little from each other, and if my parents were alive they would describe me differently from everyone else. It’s because they have all known me at different times and in different situations in my life. Each has known me intimately but that intimacy has been different for each of them. So they would describe me in the terms that relate to that relationship.
So, for each of us, when we are asked to describe God, our God, our descriptions would all vary somewhat. There might be some similarities but they would all be a little bit different because God knows us and we know God in different times and different situations.
So rather than give you answers to questions I will give you questions and you will have to come up with your own answers. How do you relate to God in each of his/her personas? Do you give God equal time in each of his natures? How do you speak with God when you pray? How does God speak to you when you are alone with him? When you are alone with God in your quiet places, wherever they may be, how do you experience him?
Some of us won’t be able to find the right words to describe God but we may be able to create a picture of how we see God. Or maybe we could sing a song that tells how we know God and he knows us. Or maybe our description of God will only come out in the music we make, however we make it.
Who is God and how can we explain who he is? I think we would all describe our God in many different ways. The one sure and certain thing we can say about God is what Jesus told Nicodemus in John 3:16, “God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life.”
Friends, God loves you in all his different natures and so do I. Thanks be to God. Amen.