One day two learned men were walking along the seashore, discussing the mystery of God. However, they weren’t making much progress. Suddenly they came upon a small boy playing on the beach. He had dug a hole in the sand and kept running down to the sea, dipping his toy pail in the water, and running back up the beach to empty the water into the hole.
The two men watched him for a while as he ran back and forth filling and emptying the pail. They found the scene rather amusing. They went up to the boy and asked him what he was doing. Very seriously he told them he was emptying the ocean into the hole he had dug in the sand.
The two smiled, and walked on, resuming their discussion about God. After a while, one of them stopped and said to the other, “You know, we were amused just now when that child told us what he was trying to do. Yet what we have been trying to do in our discussion about God is just the same. It is just as impossible for us to understand the mystery of God as it is for that child to put the water of the ocean into that hole. Our minds are but tiny thimbles, whereas the reality of God is a great as the ocean.”
As the story says: it is impossible for us to understand God. God is mystery. But a mystery is not something we can know nothing about. A mystery is something which is so full of meaning, that no matter how hard we try, we will never be able to fully understand or comprehend it.
It is possible to know something of God by using reason. One only needs to look around at the vastness of creation and know that God exists. Our greatest knowledge of God comes to us from the Sacred Scriptures, in particular, the Gospels. Jesus is the human face of God and exhibits for us the qualities of God. From the Scriptures we come to know God as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
Our readings for this feast reveal something of God to us. In the first reading from the Book of Exodus we hear, “The Lord, the Lord, a merciful and gracious God, slow to anger and rich in kindness and fidelity.” Our Gospel account proclaims that “God so loved the world that he gave his only Son.”
Both readings proclaim the same message, that being, God is a God of love. That is something extremely important for us to always remember. God loves us, not because we are good, but because God is good. Our very existence is a sign of God’s love.
Our response to the love of God is found in today’s second reading, “Mend your ways, encourage one another, agree with one another, live in peace, and the God of love and peace will be with you.”
— Father Dennis, June 11, 2017