The end of the Romans lesson for Trinity Sunday, Year C really got me this morning. At the end of that big, long, tempting sentence that I begged you not to preach this week, is an image that is too good not to pay attention to. “… hope does not disappoint us, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit that has been given to us.”
My mind was immediately taken to the end of Psalm 23, in which the Psalmist declares, “You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows.” It all got me thinking again about the abundance of God. God pours out his blessings upon our heads so that it runs down our faces, covers our bodies, and even the tips of our toes (an action that was recreated in ancient baptismal rites, but because of prudence, we no longer strip candidates naked and slather them with oil). God’s love, unfulfilled (this isn’t the right word, but I can’t think of what I want to say) as it was even within the perfect love of the Trinity, overflowed into creation. God takes that love and pours it into our hearts, but even that can’t contain it. Ideally, the love of God overflows even our hearts and is poured out into the world through acts of service and compassion, through charity and justice seeking, and through disciples just being present: shutting up and listening to the needs and hurts of another.
God pours out his love into our hearts, but if we bottle it up, we’ve missed the true blessing of sharing that gift with a world desperate for deep relationship.