Not too long ago, I wrapped up a bible study by Tara-Leigh Cobble called He’s Where the Joy Is, which I participated in through her organization D-Group (both of which I highly recommend!). The study was on the Trinity, which both daunted and excited me. The Trinity—the theological doctrine that God exists as One God in Three Persons: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit—is one of those Christian mysteries that we can only understand to a point, yet I ended the study with an increased awareness of God’s love for us as expressed through the Trinity and more in awe of God’s saving work in our lives. There’s so much I could share about what I learned: the love of God as expressed through the Trinity, the role of each member of the Trinity in the work of creation and salvation, and the list goes on. If I had to pick a single takeaway, though, it would be this: the humility of God as expressed through the Trinity and what that means for me as a Christian. In honor of Easter, I wanted to share a short and sweet reflection on this specific lesson.
Philippians 2 is one of my favorite chapters of Scripture because it tells us of the immense humility of Jesus, the Son of God stepping out of His divine glory and into the body of a human being destined to die. But the humility of God goes deeper than the work of Jesus through the relationship of the Trinity. Each Person of the Trinity does not seek His own glory, but gives glory to the other Persons. This melts my brain a little, but a quick reading of the Gospel of John illustrates this idea clearly. Everything Jesus says or does is done according to the Father’s will. The Father gives the Son His glory. Even the Holy Spirit’s function is to point us to Christ, rather than Himself. I had never noticed this before, but it demonstrates how humility is deeply embedded in the character of God.
Related to this, one of the many things that convicted me during the course of our study of the Trinity is that we as Christians are not called to imitate the Spirit, but the Son. In other words, our job is not to muster up the Fruit of the Spirit on our own merits or strength, or to reflect Christ by our own power, but instead surrender to the Spirit’s transforming work. In light of this shift in perspective, I asked myself: how often do I strive to be more like Christ by my own abilities? Or strive to achieve my own self-made moral codes instead of actually listening to the Spirit and the Word of God? For me, the answer is: quite often.
During our study, we also discussed the role and purpose of spiritual gifts. Just as the Holy Spirit points to the Father and the Son rather than to Himself, in the same vein, spiritual gifts are designed to point to God rather than to be self-glorifying. Though Scripture doesn’t name “writing” as a spiritual gift, I often consider my writing skills as a gift from the Lord. As we studied the role of spiritual gifts, writing came to my mind, prompting more self-reflective questions: am I using my writing in a self-glorifying way or a God-honoring way? It’s a question I think I need to have at the front of my mind often. There are certain seasons or days where in my pride I treat my writing as a self-glorifying career, yet I want to use my writing as a gift for others through telling stories that point to truth.
My prayer in light of all of this is that the Spirit would transform me to be more humble, like God, and that I can approach my work as a writer in a God-honoring posture. I would also invite you to join me in considering these truths about the nature and character of our God and how we view our spiritual gifts (or other blessings from the Lord).
Again, I highly recommend Tara-Leigh’s study on the Trinity. I’ve learned so much, and I’m continuing to process all that the Lord revealed to me through her study. But I at least wanted to share this small sliver of what I’m mediating on this Easter season.
With that, I wish you a Happy Easter, my friends. Praise God, He is Risen indeed! Thanks be to God for the love He has poured out on us through His Son!