“And when you pray… pray then like this, “Our Father…” -Jesus of Nazareth
We can scarcely dream or conceive of the infinitude that is God. With every image we create of God, whether in words, on canvas, or in our minds, we diminish God; for to create an image of one who is invisible is to represent them not as they are. When we imagine God as a person we anthropomorphize not only in regards to physical features but also temperament, thoughts, emotions and preferences. And when this anthropomorphization causes the Divine to be too small to encompass and embrace all of creation, then God has become… well, too small.
God does not prefer one group over another or one individual over the next. In fact, God may not prefer at all. How could Love… perfect, unending, unwavering, radiant Love have a preference? All life stems from the Life that is the concept we call God. If you have three children which is your favorite? This is a minute example comparatively but, alas, when pondering a never ending ocean of life and power (God) all we have to work with is metaphor and insufficient similitudes. The answer to the question above is, “You don’t prefer one to another,” and this must be kept firmly in our minds, and more especially in our hearts, when we dare to conjure up any image of God.
If you have life that is coursing through your physical and beyond-physical-self right now, rest assured that life came from and even is God. This life is often called “The Spirit”, and rightly so, for Spirit denotes personality, perspective and independence and truly these are experiences we all enjoy. The trick is to not forget that every other creature and creation enjoys and exhibits these attributes as well and must never be thought of as “apart from God”. For God is all and to be separate from God is to not be; consequently anything that is is of God… did I lose you yet?!
The point is, when Jesus instructed us to pray to “Our Father” he was speaking to everyone… he was speaking to you. Anyone who heard him say those words or who would ever read them after they were penned was intended to feel free to call the Invisible Divine “Father” and to feel included in and loved by God. There is a place for everyone in this Glory, Mystery and Life. There is no need to fear being separated or estranged from God for how could God ever separate God’s Self from God’s Self in you? Why do you think it is that Jesus raising from the dead was a sign? What was this miracle a sign of? Through bodily resurrection Jesus demonstrated that our concept of death as an end, as a period on the sentence of life, is wrong and that nothing every actually snatches life away from us… including death. If our life is eternal, never-ending, then our place in God is as well. There is no life separate from The Life.
Take great joy today knowing that the fact that you are breathing is proof of your inherent belonging in the mystery and power and life we have termed God. Realize that as you add love, peace and joy to the world, you are participating in the perpetuation of Beauty that Jesus called “The Kingdom of God.” As you experience love in and for yourself, don’t forget to patiently recognize this Life in everyone and everything you encounter throughout your day. The more we realize God in others the more joy we exist in and the more we see that “there is a place for everyone.” Peace to you.