“God the Father makes perfectly good sense to me, and God the Son I can quite understand, but the Holy Spirit is a grey, oblong blur!” (Quote, source unknown.)
Over the first three parts of this series we have defined, admittedly in a simple way, why we should think of the Holy Spirit as a person and not an ‘it’ or a ‘blur’. But how does the Holy Spirit fit into the concept of the Godhead? That is the Holy Trinity – the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit?
My first ever explanation of this seemingly strange relationship between the different persons of God, was when I was about 13 years old. Across the road from my home there lived an old Irish Catholic lady called Jenny. I became good friends with her grandson and so became good friends with this woman who had a gentle Irish lilt and a wise manner about her. In a way, she became another grandparent with whom I could share personal thoughts and ask questions.
I remember sitting around her small kitchen table one day with a cup of tea in my hand (yes, I used to drink the leafy stuff!) and I began to ask her about God and her faith. Eventually, the subject of the Trinity came up. She explained the trinity to me using an egg! She explained the egg has three parts:
- The shell
- The egg-white
- The yolk
If you remove any of these parts, she said, it no longer can be called an egg. Each part has its function, its purpose, and is needed for an egg to be an egg. To expand this further: We don’t refer to an egg using these individual parts. We don’t go into a shop looking for or asking for, a yolk, some egg white, and a shell. We simply ask for an egg!
And so this analogy can be used to help us in describing the Godhead. God is three persons yet they are the one true God. The Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. We can call upon each of them, pray to each one of them, thank each one of them, but ultimately we are still referring to God. Three different, yet the same persons each with a different function and purpose, but in perfect relationship with each other and that to think that, like the egg, one can be separate from the other is strange and unthinkable.
The ‘egg explanation’ has stayed with me all this time. Through all the years of searching and experimenting with other faiths, religions and what-not, this idea of God has stayed with me. There are many more questions to ask about how the Trinity works as a concept and as a divine reality. There are challenges to bring and other analogies to present. But the truth, which I have grown to accept, is that the Trinity is three persons in one divine being, flowing together, submitted to one another, and loving one another completely.
When we call on the Holy Spirit for wisdom, guidance and direction. When we pray for the gifts of the Spirit such as healing, prophecy, tongues, interpretation and raising people from the dead, we are asking for the power of God Himself to come and be at one with us. When we ask Jesus into our lives and to be our Lord and Saviour, we are asking the Creator of the universe to be at one with us. When we pray, when we cry out to God the Father for help and comfort, He comes to us as the Holy Spirit to be at one with us.
It may be after reading this series that you desire to be filled afresh with the Almighty. It may be you have not been filled with the Holy Spirit, you haven’t yet been baptised in His Spirit. Right now, you have an opportunity to pray for this to happen. You have a choice to reject this deeper connection with His Spirit and to concentrate on the love of Jesus and to read divine Scripture, but I promise that if you take this step to be filled with the Holy Spirit, your walk with Him will take a more fulfilling direction and your maturity in Him will quicken.
The LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make his face shine on you and be gracious to you; the LORD turn his face toward you and give you peace. (Numbers 6:24-26)