Trinity Sunday

Batter my heart, three-person’d God; for you
As yet but knock; breathe, shine, and seek to mend;
That I may rise, and stand, o’erthrow me, and bend
Your force, to break, blow, burn, and make me new.

— John Donne

These words (along with the other ten lines of this poem) are found on the home page of our website. This is no accident. We bear the name Holy Trinity in the name of our local church and to my mind there may be no better way to get at what Christians mean when they say God is Triune than to engage with what the great John Donne is doing in this poem. To read it simply as a man’s desire for God whom he just happen to call “three person’d”, as though there was only a surface level relationship between the request to be “overthrown” by God and what the confession of God’s Triune Personhood reveals, is to miss the point entirely!

The heart of the Christian teaching on the Trinity is best captured in the human desire to be “imprisoned”, “enthralled”, and “ravished” by God. To see something of what is meant by this strange doctrine of the Trinity, is to be open to the passion that John demonstrates in this poem—a passion that wishes to be freed from every other captivity than the captivity to this Love. I look forward to sharing with all of you in the celebration of the three-person’d God this Sunday. See you then.




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