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Father Times Two

June 16, 2017

This blog was written and posted several years ago by Allen, who serves as a Global Media Trainer for Reach Beyond. Its timeless message warrants reposting.


God does double duty: Father and father

The fatherless: abandonment, death, divorce, indifference. The reasons vary, but the results are the same: anger, confusion, bitterness, rebellion, and abusive or reckless behavior. This is when God has to double duty, becoming a father as well as being our heavenly Father.

During my two decades as a missionary, whether in Latin America or in Africa, I’ve met and counseled many youth who don’t know their earthly fathers or who have been shunned, sometimes even abused, by their biological or adoptive fathers.

Some have been able to move forward, with help from God. Others, however, have a hard time knowing Him as a heavenly “Father” because of what they have or have not seen in their earthly father.

Last week I was chatting on-line with “John”, a young man in Peru. I’ve never met him in person, but God allowed us to “meet” each other by way of HCJB-2’s Facebook page in December two years ago. (HCJB-2 is our local radio station in Guayaquil, Ecuador.) “John” is studying tourism at the local university. He did well on a recent project and I said “I’m proud of you, brother. Facebook hug!”

I was left speechless by his response, “You know, I would have liked for my father to tell me that he was proud of me and to give me a hug. He has never hugged me nor told me that he loves me or that he’s proud of me. He has only mistreated me, and when he does come to the house, he acts like I don’t even exist.”

I’m most familiar with the fatherless situation in Ecuador and also Liberia. However, John Sowers, President of The Mentoring Project and author of Fatherless Generation: Redeeming the Story, says, “Rejection is the defining characteristic of the fatherless generation, where in the United States alone, just over 33 percent of youth — over 25 million kids — are fatherless and searching for Dad. Searching for his love and acceptance. (Just like “John”.) But Dad is nowhere to be found.”

Please pray for “John”. Pray that God would make Himself so real to our Peruvian brother that he will one day be able to forgive his earthly father. If not, the anger and bitterness will simply flow to another generation of his family. “John” knows he MUST forgive his father, even though his father has never asked for nor deserves forgiveness. However, you and I both know, the forgiveness is just as much for “John” as it is for his father, as well as for “John’s” future children.

And thank God for being with him, doing double duty, as father and Father.

 

Allen.

 

Update note: I have since met “John” and he is doing very well, praise God.


 


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