Imagine if you can a three way conversation between God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. In response to a question Jesus has just asked the Father, all three are laughing. I will write more on that later. Before we get back to that, permit me to ask you a question. Do you think most of us from time to time take life a little too seriously? This is not to say that our eternal salvation is a matter to take lightly, but maybe laughter along the way is important too. Please read more to see what has the Trinity laughing.
Permit me to pose a few questions for our consideration. What do you complain most about? What things really get under your skin? Now before you answer, allow me to pry just a little deeper. Let’s keep our answers focused on church issues only. So now, what things about your church annoy you? Are there a few things or possibly a few people or maybe some rules that just tick you off? Has something in your church ever really made you mad? Perhaps there is someone in your church that gets on your nerves. Is there a specific ministry within your church that you feel is heading in the wrong direction? Have you left a church or parish in the past over some incident, or person or decision? If you have answered yes to any of these questions I hope today’s email will at least for a moment put a smile on your face.
There is an old axiom that goes something like this: I spent my entire life in search of the PERFECT church, until one day I realized that if I discovered a PERFECT church they would not allow me, one who is IMPERFECT, to be a member.
The CHURCH is a composite of the members. All of us from the laity of the church to the ministers, priests, deacons, and magisterium are imperfect people. We are all sinners. Isn’t it kind of silly to assume that the church which is a compilation of 100 percent imperfect people would somehow mysteriously become 100 percent perfect? If I fill a glass with 100 percent milk will it somehow become 100 percent tea? No of course not. It can’t be something that it isn’t. The church is a gathering of sinners. Why do we expect perfection?
Does this presuppose that we should not be concerned about the flaws that are uncovered in our various churches? No, that is not my point here. If we think something is heading in the wrong direction should we speak up? Yes of course. My point is that each of us, yes every one of us is both part of the problem, and also called to be part of the solution. My key point is this: The “fixing” starts with fixing us, not with us fixing everyone and everything else.
The more we can see our own short comings and the more we can be accepting or at least understanding of other’s shortcomings then the easier it will be to at least understand the collective shortcomings of our various churches. Yes I am talking about that “old plank in the eye thing.” James 5:9 tells us: “Do not complain brothers and sisters, about one another that you may not be judged.”
At times it is helpful to deal with difficult issues with a dose of laughter. This does not lessen the seriousness of a situation. It just causes us to take a deep breath and take stock of our position on the matter.
Now back to the laughing Trinity. In the back of my mind there has been an image for over twenty years. I would love to have this yet to be painted picture hanging in my office someday. Here is a description of that image: God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit are all sitting in a nice living room around a big wooden coffee table. All three of them are sitting in heavy, leather, comfortable chairs. Each one of them is depicted in hysterical laughter. Their heads are rolled back and smiles cross their faces. Below the painting is written this inscription:
Jesus has just said: “Dad, tell me again why you thought handing the church off to humans was ever going to work?”
Think about it my friends; it has been over 2000 years. The “church” has had many missteps and schisms. If you were to look at the mistakes, corruption, and schisms over this time period one would have to question how it could have survived. The answer is simple. The church was started by Jesus Christ and after Jesus’s Ascension the Father sent us His Holy Spirit to be with us always. So yes, despite our short comings, the work of His church continues. The church is divinely inspired and even with human failings the church will not fail. One day Christ will return for His bride the church. When that day comes she will be waiting.
The next time that you perceive that the church or someone in the church is going in the wrong direction, first and foremost pray for that person or situation. Turn it over to God. Trust in His divine plan and outcome. If after doing the above the situation still requires action, act and speak with kindness, humility, and mercy, in other words in a Christ like manner. Then after doing this and before you do anything else, relax a bit, look at yourself in a mirror and smile and finally remember my description of the LAUGHING TRINITY. God has things under control and He has long before we came along.
Dear Heavenly Father, let me never lose sight of the fact that you call me to be a JOYFUL Christian. Help me to place my trust in you and take life a little less seriously. Help me to smile today!
My hope is that someone who reads this who is an artist or knows an artist might be able to take the image from my mind and paint it for me. If so please contact me.
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