Many thanks to those that sent comments yesterday. It was, for BU, quite a flurry...I appreciate everyone who took the time.
Peacebang wrote about the Boston Unitarian's focus on the Fatherhood of God and her comment made a special impact as I had been thinking more about that as well. I was blessed with wonderful parents who made thinking of God in parental terms a natural expression (and I am, of course, male, which means I didn't even consider the gender aspects of God as Father until the view had already become implanted in my mind and heart.
As I have gotten older and, I hope, a small bit wiser, I have come to understand how the idea of God as Father causes dramatically different feelings and emotions in people. My view of God as Father has also been changed as I face my own shortcomings as a Father...
I suppose the image remains largely because it was my first view of God and also because I believe that most all of us have an ideal of what Fatherhood (or Parenthood) should be...and that ideal is how I think of the idea of God as Father.
Finally, I am a stay-at-home father for our three children and my wonderful wife is the primary breadwinner. Traditional parental roles for our family and so many others have been shiftting for many years. When I think of God as Father, I ascribe no gender...so "God" becomes, for me, as a "perfect parent" a vision of the highest that I would seek to be (and fall far short of...and yet the vision is before me)
Thank you Peacebang for the comment and I would love to hear what others think about this very important question...
Thanks also to David at UU Way of Life for the good words and for your passionate and very heartfelt and amibitious efforts. I will write more as time goes on.
Blessings and thanks to all.