I just stumbled across this terrific meditation on God as Father, written by Marcellino D’Ambrosio.
While it has nothing to do with today’s readings for the Twelfth Sunday in Ordinary Time, it could serve as an inspiring Father’s Day homily — or, at least, heartfelt food for thought. Take a gander:
Most of the great religions of the world believe in one God and teach the gist of the Ten Commandments.
But that the supreme Being is not just “King of the Universe” or “Master” but “Father,” that he desires that we have a close, familiar relationship with Him–these ideas you don’t find anywhere outside the teaching of Jesus.
To call God “Father” does not mean to say, of course, that he is an old man with a white beard. Only the second person of the Blessed Trinity wedded himself to a male human nature in the womb of Mary. The Father and the Holy Spirit are pure Spirit and transcend male and female, masculine and feminine (CCC 239). This is no new insight brought to Christianity by the feminist movement. It has always been taught that the word “Father” applied to God, is used by way of analogy. Analogies tell us something very true despite being imperfect. Until recently, the father was recognized by Western society as origin, head and provider of the family. To call the first person of the Trinity “Father” means that he is the origin and transcendent authority of all and cares for the needs of all.
But we all instinctively know that a father who just pays the bills and barks orders is not enough. We expect a dad to have an intimate, affectionate relationship with his children, to spend “quality time” with them. To call God “Father” means, then, that he is near to us, intimately concerned with us, fond of us, even crazy about us. He is not the distant, clockmaker God of Thomas Jefferson and the Deists. This aloof God of the philosophers created the world to run by virtue of its own natural laws so that he could withdraw and occupy himself with more interesting pursuits.
No, the God whom Jesus calls Father cares about us and knows us intimately. “Every hair on your head is numbered (Mat 10:30).” He loves us more than we love ourselves and knows us better than we know ourselves.
That is something we often forget, and something, I think, that we need to hear, now more than ever.