Thursday, July 8, 2021



Dear All of Us,

So what do you think?

Is God like 

  a comfy grandparent,

  a lover,

  a genius,

  a Commanding General,

  a best friend,

  a guru,

  a Teacher of the Year,

  an ace quarterback,

  a sage

  a magician,

  an architect,

  a friend,

  a coach?

The answer, 

 of course, 



That's because 

when we try 

to describe God 

we have no choice 

but to employ metaphor.

The part of us 

that is mystic/poet

gets that.

We're not trying 

to say 

who God is.

what God is

how God is.

We are trying to say 

a tiny little bit about 

how we experience God.

For us 

   "God is like..."

We know darn well 

that our metaphor 

is to God 

as a match 

is to the sun.

We experience 

a lot more 

than we can say,

and we know/sense 

that there is 

infinitely more than 

we can experience

just yet.

It will take forever,

and we're darn delighted 

about that.

This metaphor matter

was clear from the get go.

Genesis is an effort

to stammer something 

of God's exuberant 


God's vast creativity.

It used the metaphor 

of a worker/artist

as contemporary science 

uses the metaphor of

The Big Bang.

Now hang on!

Let's admit 

the whole thing 

      is so 

and at the same time 

     so is it 

exactly otherwise.

It's time to flip 

the paradox pancake.

Same pancake,

different side up.

God is infinitely 

more than all those 

metaphorical "likes"

mentioned above - 

    comfy grandparent,

    lover, genius,

    ace quarterback...

God is God 

and we do not have 

the lenses, circuitry,

spectrum nor span

to grasp or convey

who and how 

God is.

The startling thing is 

not that "God is like...,"

but rather that 

WE are "like" God.

What a flip of the pancake!

     Then God said,

    "Let us make


     in our image,

     according to 

     our likeness..."

     Genesis 1:26

We are a partial

of the Whole.

Jumping back to

more metaphor,

we are babies 

and spitting images

of our Parent.

What a "likeness."

And we have 

a divine set of genes.

It will take us forever,

endless eternity,

as they mature

to ever more fullness 

and excellence.

This side of the pancake 

is a mind blower,

a heart enthraller.

It shows that 

we are sacred.

And so is every other

coloration of person, 

those appealing, displeasing,

those similar, quite different.

We are all in the image,

in the "likeness" of God,

whether others know it or not, 

whether we know it or not.

The implications 

for our spiritual lives,

- our absorption in God -

for human relatedness,

for social justice,

for our practical,

     everyday living,

for communal sharing

will take all our earth years

to understand and live

and yet never finish.

In painfully too many cases,

it will mean to reorder 

to loving justice.

We are more than 

fellow anythings.

We are at core 

one in the Oneness 

of our creative God.

    Then the King will say, 

    'I'm telling 

    the solemn truth: 

    Whenever you did 

    one of these things 

    to someone 

    overlooked or ignored, 

    that was me -

    you did t to me.'


     Matthew 25:40

      The Message

    That's a "likeness"

    unto divine union.

      Here's a simple,

      rule of thumb 

      guide for behavior: 

      ask yourself 

      what you want people 

      to do for you, 

      then grab the initiative 

      and do it for them. 

      Add up God's Law 

      and the Prophets and 

      this is what you get.


           Matthew 7:12

           The Message

           What a "get"

  What a oneness in Oneness.

Here's a gift I received.

It all started long ago.

I was a teen,

trying to be real

and not having much luck 

with the endeavor.

The Joe McCarthy Pandemic

was infecting and distorting

the nation and me:

   There's a communist

   under ever bed,

   and certainly behind desks

   in the federal government,

   and reporting for the media,

   and menacing the military.

At that time

Ethel and Julius Rosenberg

were sentenced to death 

as spies for Russia.

I hated them for

betraying my country.

Dirty, rotten Commies!

I wanted them executed.

My soul was in turmoil.


Also at the same time, 

I was hopelessly 

tossing about in 

the churning sea 

of puberty

with its flood 

of sexual energy,

most of which threw me 

into mortal sin more than 

a few times a week,

as per my RC context.


I was going to burn 

in hell forever

but I couldn't stop 

being sexually energized.

It just keep coming my way

in all sorts of new ways.

Tough to sort out.

Father Joseph Sheehan,

ever patient parish priest,

to the rescue.

He helped me see that 

absolutely every person

is created in the image, 

the very likeness of God,

even if that image 

is distorted or smeared.

That freed me to love 

and pity the Rosenbergs,

to move through 

the limit of hate 

to holy union. 



      What about 

      our now and

      Derek Chauvin?


Back to puberty.

How about

the sex sin stuff

(and burning in hell)?

Well, Father Sheehan 

helped me to see that 

a beautiful girl 

is not to be bedded 

in fact or fantasy

simply because both 

she and I were hot. 

Way better, 

we both are sacred,

created in the 

very likeness of God

and called to/capable of

much fuller and 

more genuine sharing.

Too darn good to mess,

to trivialize.

Father Sheehan 

helped me to see that

what we do 

with/to another 

we do to God.

As I grew, 

these adolescent insights

matured to realizing 

that yes we people 

are actually a "likeness"

of God way more 

than God 

is like a genius,

an ace quarterback.

a comfy grandparent.

We are a presence

of God to others, 

each and all of us.

People experience

a bit and more of God

through us.

We just need to let the

Divine DNA in us

function and flow. 

Each of us 

makes present God and

that in unique fashion.

I also learned that 

what attracts me 

to another person 

is their special likeness 

to/of God.

They presence God 

by their beauty, intellect, 

prowess, character, talent,

holiness, depth, warmth,

humor, ...

a vast array of divine

marvels and epiphanies.

That's even so when people

are twisted and destructive.

We have to work extra hard

to see through all that 

to their divine core

and God's presence.

Mystics and poets 

get all this.

They realize that

no metaphor 

shows more than 

a shade of God

and that we all 

presence a partial ray 

of the sun that is God.

These are helps 

as we happily fall into

the mystery of 

God Love.

      We don't yet 

      see things clearly. 

      We're squinting 

      in a fog, peering 

      through a mist.

      But it won't be long 

      before the weather clears 

      and the sun shines bright!

      We'll see it all then, 

      see it all as clearly 

      as God sees us,

      knowing him directly

      just as he knows us!

      But for right now,

      until that completeness,

      we have three things

      to do that lead us 

      toward that consummation:

      Trust steadily in God,

       hope unswervingly,

       love extravagantly.

       and the best of the three 

       is to love.

      1 Corinthians 13: 12-13

           The Message

We can only know 

so much now.

But nothing to keep us

from experiencing

way more and ever more

in mystical embrace.

Lovers entwined 

aren't bothering to know

because they are lost 

in the wonder of each other.

So it is with us in God

and God in us entwined.

God metaphor 

gets us to first.

Experiencing God 

in others

gets us to second.

Making God Love

is a Home Run.

It's not a 

limited metaphor.

We have it on good, 

on God authority.

We are wanted 

by what we want:

  "God is love"

   1 John 4:8

In that Love

and way more than 


   John Frank



to first timers and long timers,

with a special Hi Five to those


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    the surge of COVIC-19

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In sheer clear candor,

all of then are 

a tiny touch like God.