Sunday, July 29, 2007

HAWKEYE. . . no, not from * M*A*S*H*

When a hawk is soaring the thermals, looking for food to feed itself, or its young, does it worry about the currents and wonder if it's wings will hold it up? Does it worry that food won't appear? Does it worry about rain or snow or wind gusts or heat or cold? No. Father Shane's homily today carried that message.

Father Shane was out in Colorado last weekend to marry a young couple. He traveled to Snowmass (where he'd been in his younger days, discerning to be a monk, but told us he likes to talk too much to have ever been a monk!) and while sitting up high in the Rockies, (where we were last weekend, too, outside of Denver, not Snowmass) he saw a hawk soaring so beautiful and free. A couple of times it came fairly close to him and he could see its head cocking from one side to the other, as it's eyes scanned the ground, searching for some tasty morsel with four legs;totally unaware of its forthright demise. The whole circle of life eh?

Father said he considered this and how it was so apropos with the readings today. Jesus was asked fervently by his disciples, "Lord, teach us to pray!" He told them to say: "Our Father...." Now to call God Father was unheard of in those days! They would no more do that than eat pork! It was abhorrent to them. But Jesus, their Lord and Rabbi, said to call God their Father!

Does a Father give his son a snake when he asks for a fish? Or a scorpion when he asks for an egg? No way! We humans, being wicked give our children the best of things and try to nourish them with love and good food. We are hurt when they don't trust us. HOW MUCH MORE does OUR FATHER in Heaven care for us? We can't really begin to fathom it. We're too puny of mind to comprehend such a vast deep and wide expanse of love. Yet, we're lavished upon with that tender love and grace every single day. It boggles my mind and tugs at my heart. It makes me want to run to him, go to Adoration and just 'cuddle down' on "Daddy's lap." Just sit in silence and listen to him breathe, or hum, or talk, or just hold me.

Now back to the hawk. Let's take a moment and just look at "Hawkeye" - not Alan Alda.*
We can surely see that he's fierce, yet he's tender toward his/her young. He's looking for food to keep his young alive and himself. "Hawkeye" cares for his/her self appropriately, not vainly and cares his or her young with a devoted "parental instinct." How much more should we simply, with childlike faith, trust our God, our Abba....our DADDY?

Abba was the word Jesus spoke to his disciples who pleaded with him to know how to pray. Abba, if some of you don't know, means Daddy. So personal! So tender! Our Daddy loves us with a relentless, overwhelming and passionate love! We should now and then just take a moment in our busy day and at work to just say "Thank you, Daddy" or "Thanks Pop." Of course, not in a "too casual" sense, (like some are these days) but in our own vernacular we can call God our Daddy. We can trust him as a son or daughter with our lives, wiht our wishes and our needs. We can even trust him with our wants. He delights in just our telling him of these things! We can also trust him with our children's lives, even if it seems like they're nowhere NEAR God, or Church. We can trust him with everything! If we trust him like the birds of the air, or the lilies of the field, we'll soar like "Hawkeye." We'll be assured and safe knowing that he'll provide the thermals to keep our altitude, the keen eyesight to see our food that he provides with such care. Our trust in him is the 'wind beneath our wings.' It's our faith that gives him great joy. Like Peter when he had the faith to step out of the boat, it held him above the waves, but his doubt and fears caused him to sink like a stone.

I was just so renewed, and revived in my soul this morning listening to Father. And now I'm thinking how wonderful it is that we have priests! We have men of God, holy men we can call Father. And knowing Father Shane like I do, I might, with all respect give him a card one day that says, "Thank you Pop" for being my Father on earth. For loving me, and praying for me and absolving me of my sin. You provide the security of the confessional for me to 'let go' of fear, doubt, even the most grievous of sins. How can I thank you? By being a loving, trusting child, who's always assured of one thing: Daddy's love thatwill never, ever cease.


*i.e. any wimpy, Oprafied, blubbering, metro-sexual, hyper-sensitive, spaghetti-spined male. That's my acerbic opinion of those "alan alda" types. I don't know Alan Alda at all, so maybe it's too harsh, but if you've ever seen him cry at a pro choice rally, get my drift. Unfortunately, those many tears aren't for the babies, but for "choice."

1 comment:

MMajor Fan said...

How nice of you to summarize Fr. Shane's comments on the reading and also your own thoughts; I think that's lovely and a great way to share a wonderful message.

With so many absentee, abusive, egocentric or ineffective parents today, children are even farther from understanding God as a father than ever before. It's really sad.

Think of the joy Abraham had when he hosted the Lord at his table when God visited with two of his angels. He honored the Lord like not only an honored guest but like his Father, since God brought him news of the direction of Abraham's family and the lineage.