PRAYER: Today, we celebrate the Feast of the Most Holy Trinity- the glory of three persons in one God. I love the early description of the Trinity as perichoresis, meaning a kind of rotation or interconnectedness going round and round together in a wonderful dance of unending love. Here is a poetic prayer that is a kind of perichoresis, I guess. It is a circular prayer; the end is another beginning. Let’s pray it together and contemplate where we have seen God in our day today.
Once we see God truly, we truly see God everywhere.
Once we see God everywhere, everything is transformed.
Once everything is transformed, we see that we are all one.
Once we see that we are all one, peace will reign.
Once peace reigns, the Kingdom will be built.
Once the Kingdom is built, all will live in harmony.
Once all live in harmony, we can see with the eyes of grace.
And once we see with the eyes of grace, we see God truly.
This is all well and good, I hear some say. But life can be tough. We can be swamped by bad news, ill health, fractious relationships, worries and trouble. Our language at these times often refers to ‘air’ and ‘breath’. We can feel that the ‘air has been taken out of our sails’. Our bodies sometimes hold our worries and we can feel that breathing itself is difficult. We can hear ourselves speak of the need of ‘breathing space’ away from our troubles. At these times we often feel the need for ‘inspiration’. I revisited the definition of the word ‘inspire’:
Inspire- to breathe or blow into; to impart an idea or truth.
In the Christian tradition we associate air, wind and breath with the Holy Spirit- the third person in the Trinity we celebrate today. Th Spirit is the person who activates, motivates, creates, opens the way. The Spirit breathes life into us and helps us to move along the path of life.
So, if you find yourself tonight in a time of trial, trouble or worry, just take a moment to breathe.
Breathe deeply. Breathe slowly. Breathe deliberately. Take some time to simply breathe. Allow your thoughts and feelings to become quiet. In order to do so, many find it helpful to concentrate on the bodily sensation of breathing. Notice hoe your body responds to your breath. It will move as you breathe. Really focus in on this for a minute or two before continuing. When you feel ready, read on.
And as you do so, consider the possibility that you breathe in more than air; you could be breathing in the Spirit that truly inspires us. Feel the air rush in to you on your in breath. As it goes in, you could say,
‘I am filled with the life-giving Spirit of God and all will be well in the end.’
Now feel the air rush out of you. As it goes out, you could say,
‘If things are not well, it’s not the end yet.’
Continue to breathe and repeat,
‘All will be well in the end. If things are not well, it’s not the end yet.’
Give it a go. Even if you have difficulty with the language of faith, breathing deeply is good for you!
May the Spirit of God fill you, energise you, prosper and protect you.