We only have to switch the TV on to know there is plenty of evil in the world, but in today’s Gospel John reminds us that if we know and believe in God we can stand up to that evil. But how do we even begin to know God? Do we think of a God who created the world billions of years ago but has been pretty quiet since? Do we think of God who sent his Son to save us, but only know it because the story sits in a bible up on the book shelf? Or do we think of a God who made us, a God who sent his Son to teach us, and a God who sent his Spirit to guide us through each day of our lives and through each generation that walks the earth?
The Trinity might be a bit of a theological mystery to us, but that doesn’t mean to say that we are not able to understand anything of God. We understand God in three ways; as Father and creator, as Son and redeemer, and as God’s Spirit left to guide and strengthen us.
God the Father is all around us. God’s miracles are in front of our eyes when we wake up in the morning and in the night skies before we go to sleep. We live on the only planet able to support life in our universe. God’s miracles are there for all to see in our breath-taking landscapes, in our oceans teeming with life and in mankind itself. How often do we stop to praise God’s creation or appreciate the miracles that surround us?
God the Son came to teach us with stories and signs. He came to reveal God’s plan for us. God the Son came to show us the way to God the Father. Gods’ Son came to us in a great manifestation of God’s love. “God so loved the world that he sent his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life.”
The Spirit of God is the part of God left to guide us and lead us. The Holy Spirit is something we can completely forget about … or something we can call on every day, in every choice and in every decision we make.
Today John tells us that God is the light that helps us stand up to evil wherever it raises its head. Knowing God helps us to share that light.