Monday, January 05, 2004

The laughter of a Father
A while back I went to a beautiful ordination. The ceremony was very moving for a variety of reason (some of which I may share at a future date because they are quite inspiring). After it was over, at the reception, someone made the remark that “God must look down on us at these things and laugh.” By the way he was snickering when he said it seemed he was implying that all the pomp and ceremonial that we surround such events with is really unnecessary and in fact ludicrous, that God would consider it frivolous.

At first I was angry about his remark. It was a beautiful ceremony and certainly God was not laughing at us for celebrating it the way we did.

Upon further reflection, however, it occurred to me that God really does laugh at such attempts, but it is not the laughter of contempt or derision, but the laughter that a father has for his little child when he does something like draw a picture or sing a song. The laughter is one of joy, of recognizing the beauty in the halting efforts of a little child to do something special for his daddy or mommy. From an objective standpoint the picture is no da Vinci, but still one can recognize in a child’s drawing the beginnings of the kind of vision and sensitivity that is exhibit much more obviously in one of the great painters.

When we created beautiful ceremonies, they do not hold a candle to the glories of the heavenly liturgy. Still, because we are made in imago dei (the image of God) and because we are recipients of His Grace, God must recognize in our efforts the beginnings of those qualities that will be revealed in full when we enter (if we enter) into the kingdom. When God sees us, He must laugh with the joy of a father who loves His children and sees them moving toward their destiny.

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