Mystery Amid Mayhem
We live in the information age. When in doubt, go to your computer and get online. Well, you don’t even have to go to your computer. I just got a Blackberry Pearl. I can connect to the internet anywhere I want and get sports scores whenever I want them. That’s very convenient for the minutes between Masses–no, not during Mass. A number of years ago math teachers faced the challenge of teaching arithmetic to children armed with calculators. Now teachers have to learn how to distinguish great research on essays and projects from the student’s ability to cut and paste.
The Age of Information has provided us with whatever facts we need at our finger tips, but it has also assaulted the very concept of faith. Because explanations can be found for most of the questions we may have, we feel cheated when we come upon unanswerable questions, questions like: "Why do good people die? What happens after death? Does God exist? What is God like? Who, really, is Jesus Christ? How has the past become the present and the future? How is it that the Christ can be with the Father yet still with us?"
People of faith realize that mystery can be found throughout life. Instead of questioning the unknowable, people of faith see in the very presence of mystery the presence of God, the Holy One. Holy, by the way means completely separate from the material world. Sadly, many people refuse to recognize the existence of Mystery. Their lives revolve around the here and now, the physical. They have led our society into mayhem. "If it feels good do it," is the modern expression of ancient Hedonism. It has resulted in a total lack of responsibility for actions, a total rejection of the greater good of society, a total assault against the concept that we are accountable to God for our lives. It has produced the insanity that really reached a new lows in the arguments supporting partial birth abortion that refuse to consider the possibility that the child feels pain and suffers. The rejection of the spiritual, the rejection of Mystery, has led to chaos in our society.
In the middle of this, we come to Church this week and are confronted with the Doctrine of the Trinity. I suggest that for us in 2007, it is not the details of the dogma that are important. What is important is the fact that the unknowable exists. More than that, the Holy, that which is completely separate from physical life, has infused the life of the believer with the spiritual, with the Life of God.
The Eternal Creator of the universe shocked us by establishing an intimate relationship with us. At baptism we receive his life. Our bodies are sacred, holy, because we are the dwelling place of God. He has bestowed infinite dignity upon
us to such an extent that we have been given the right to call the Second Person of the Trinity, Jesus the Christ, our brother.
As Christians we have been called to restore Mystery amid the mayhem of our society. We do this by focusing our lives on the One who is both transcendent and intimate, Jesus Christ. He is one of us, with us always. He is the eternal Son of the Father, present at the dawn of Creation, sitting at the Right Hand of the Father, sending his Spirit, the Holy Spirit to empower us to make sense out of the irrationality of life, to put the Order of God into the chaos of materialism.
Every action of our lives must be grounded in our union with Jesus Christ. You folks who come to church this weekend are serious Catholics. You come to church for more than the sentiments of Christmas and Easter. You do not attend Mass to keep other people happy. You attend Mass because you need the Lord in your lives and in the lives of your families. Perhaps you are attend to ask God to help you make Him real for your children. Perhaps you are here asking Him to help you experience His Presence in others and provide others with an experience of his presence. Perhaps you are here asking God to help you draw closer to Him every day of life that you have left. Probably you are here for all these reasons. You are here to bring the Holy Order of Mystery into a world of chaos.
You and I are Christian because the world desperately needs us to be Christian. The world needs us to establish a close relationship with others, while at the same time live for the Lord. The world needs us to provide others with an experience of the spiritual. This is the mission, the command, that Jesus gave before his Ascension: "Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations."
The mystery of the Trinity is more than an esoteric doctrine of faith. It is a model for the Christian lifestyle. We are called to be in the world, intimate, yet not of the world, transcendent.
We are called to bring Mystery amid the mayhem.