"Trinity" Sunday – C3
Paul has here an interesting progression that begins with suffering and ends with G*D's love. I'm sure there is good legal reasoning in the context of the times of its writing for moving in this direction, but it feels odd.
If we begin with a completed state of action (we are justified), how do we then enter into a series that seems to begin with the incomplete. Suffering qua suffering doesn't have much going for it. Suffering needs something else to complete itself - endurance. This goes up some ladder to character, to hope, and to G*D's love. It is almost as if one needs to be sure to suffer in order to be able to move toward G*D's love.
If we are going to build on the completedness of justification, it would seem to be stronger to begin with the completed assurance of G*D's love that has already been poured into our hearts (might that be all hearts as part of a universal salvation). Then, growing from G*D's love we will be open to hope in every situation. This hope becomes our basic character allowing us to endure every disappointment and crucifixion, even suffering, with a hope built on the surety of G*D's love already and ever present. G*D's love results in a sense of wholeness in every other part of our lives.
It's a little thing, but sequence can be of the utmost importance and this is a significant sequence to see which way around works for you and yours.
= = = = = = =
wisdom spirituality calls experience
wonder of life
in all its complexity
to dance and live fully in this world
to choose life in all its abundance
trusting God’s grace and wisdom
embrace life in its many dimensions
joy and sorrow
peace and conflict
living and dying
in every encounter
[Note: this is a reformatted comment found on the Process and Faith website.]