The Word of God is the fountain of wisdom. It is the mirror of life that reflects the true image of the human person, without any mask and pretension. Like a double-edged sword, it penetrates the inner depths of man’s being, and thus, reveals the secrets of his inmost thoughts.
But while we unanimously affirm the value and importance of the Word of God, we are also forced to admit the unfortunate reality that only very few have actually taken hold of the Scripture and read it. Perhaps, the preconceived ideas and biases of its complexities and technicalities hold us back. We would rather wait for the priest to give his sermon than painstakingly discover on our own God’s message and directions in the Scriptures. As a consequence, we lose the rare opportunity to seize ‘the pearl of great price,’ just awaiting to be uncovered in the pages of the Holy Book.
For sure, the author of these gospel reflections does not intend to make his book a substitute for the Scriptures. He simply wants to share the experience of what he has personally discovered: the mysterious reality of God. He does not pretend to change people’s lives, for this belongs primarily to the work of God’s grace. Indeed, he wishes to ignite the reader’s interest into the value and meaning of the Scripture in the grinding reality of daily life. He wants to share how the Word of God touched him: to give witness, rather than to preach.
After going through these pages, one realizes that human experience is a very unique source of material in the understanding of God’s Word. In truth, the wisdom of the Scriptures shines the most vis-a-vis the human experience. The more you read and understand the Scriptures, the more you become sensitive to the real meaning of your life experience, and the more aware you become of God’s presence in your life and where He is leading you. Likewise, a well-reflected life reaches its ultimate articulation in the Bible. After a reflective reading and soul-searching, one realizes the meaning of life’s journey in the figures, events, experiences, verses, etc. of the Sacred Scripture.
The Word of God leads us into the most intimate reality of life. What lies beneath the surface of our everyday life is the reality of God, but it is only by faith that we see it. Life goes up and down, high and low, ebb and flow, but the reality of God remains constant. It is a wonderful experience to see how created things are interconnected in God: the Alpha and the Omega. The real beauty of life emerges in the shadow of the ineffable mystery of the Godhead.
The title of this book is most telling: ‘The Word God Spells’. It suggests a creative perspective in looking at the gospels as ‘God’s spells’. For the very wisdom of this book emanates from the daily gospel reading, and as the author’s reflections would show, the gospels truly spell the good news of our salvation: ‘God in us’. As we meditate on the Word of God, we see the very reality of God in the varying circumstances of our everyday life. Indeed, the Word of God speaks of God Himself, and the word God spells!
The ultimate intention of this work, I dare say, would be to spread the Word of God in its spellbinding power and strength. But it only accomplishes this goal when, after everything is said and done, we go down on bended knees to pray. For what good is reflecting, if it will not bring us to an encounter with God? If there is any contribution this work wishes to add to the volumes of gospel reflections in bookstores, it would be to offer the Word of God for daily prayers and meditations.
Msgr. Paul A. Cuison
Archdiocese of Davao