I am two years old when my mother leaves my father because of physical and emotional abuse. I have no recollection of this father. My mother informs me he loved me. When my mother is at work, his job is to watch me, but feeding, clothing and changing dirty diapers were not his style.
The next time I hear from my father is when I am sixteen years old. He comes for a visit and asks questions that appear ludicrous to a teen. He opens our conversation with these two questions: “Do you have any brothers?” and “Do you have any sisters?”
These questions told me my father did not care about me. He knew I had one brother and zero sisters. I suppose my expression informed him precisely of my thoughts. But he reiterated he was talking about black brothers and sisters. It took me a while to think racially, but slowly I figured out what he is saying. My father is black and my mother white, my brother and I go to a white school and live a predominantly white life. It was the 60s with a lot of racial unrest. Racial confrontations or concerns were not a part of my daily life.
Another part of our conversation is my father holding up his fist a symbol of black power saying, “The Blacks are taking over the world.” And then informs me, if I want to be a part of this new world, I need to marry a black man and give my black father black grandchildren. I want to know what my purpose in life is, not the race of my children. I struggle to stay calm and inform him with a clear strong voice, “If I fall in love with a black man, I will marry one.” I brought out a temper I had never seen.
Now, my temper flies, I am done playing these word games and my words flow strongly and freely: “I will marry a china man and you will have Chinese grandchildren!” He really flips over that statement, and our conversation gets heated and my father raises his arm to hit me, with perfect timing a noise across the street stops my father. My father turns and sees firemen talking at the fire station across the street and slowly his arm drops to his side.
I could not believe he thinks it is okay to hit me. I am in shock. I have not lived with physical abuse and not planning on allowing it now. So, I walk away.
I never see my father again, although he informed me in our conversation, that I had a younger half-sister. She reminds him of me at the age she is now. He suggests I meet her while he takes us all to Disney Land for a family outing. I never heard from him again.
Many years later, I discover he has left this earth, and my brother has found three half-sisters. I am not interested in meeting with this part of his family. He had time to love and care for other children, but no time to embrace me?
I am 60 years old and 45 years later I read my Daily Word; I discover I am to honor my father and mother. Does God really expect me to honor a man that has shown no worth as a father? He gave nothing to earn that right and then I hear the quiet voice of the Holy Spirit and then reminded; I call this man my biological father. It is time to forgive. Instead of saying biological father, I will give him the status of “father” in my life.
A New Family
After this experience with my choice, I fly to the city where my half-sisters live for a conference. I decided to text one of them and inform them I will meet with one or all three if they choose. The three met with me.
I found God had blessed me with three amazing women as sisters. I loved them and immediately had a strong connection with them. It was as if I had known them all along.
In my Past Fathers are:
For me, fathers meant nothing. Fathers represented pain and abandonment. After getting saved someone told me to accept God as my father, I almost quit being a Christian. Father’s don’t care and they abandoned me, like my biological father or they won’t love me like my step-father. Maybe I should not be a Christian. But God is teaching me what a true father is and at 62 God gave me a better understanding of the prayer, “Our Father.”
My New understanding of Father’s
One day I prayed: “Lord, teach me how to pray.”
This is what he gave me.
I saw Jesus looking into my eyes and saying, “Our Father.”
Jesus looked into your eyes and said “Our Father.”
The Lord’s Prayer Matthew 6:9-13
- Our Father
I realize that we have the same father.
- Who art in heaven
Jesus clarified that He is referring to His father God, not fathers on earth.
In John 14:9 Jesus tells them who the father is:
Jesus said to him, “… Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. “
The more I understand Jesus, the more I have knowledge of the Father.
- Hallowed be thy name
Holy means God is set apart. Father God cannot be compared to any earthly beings or any earthly thing. I need to see him differently than anyone or anything than I have ever known.
- Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven
God’s will, is for this moment in my present life. I can have the things of heaven: peace, love, and abundance here on earth.
- Give us this Day our daily bread
The Lord is my daily provision; I am to ask for what I need for the present and not to concern myself with the past or future. God provides for my present and my tomorrows.
- And forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors
My approach is to forgive, even when they owe me.
- Lead us not into temptation
The Lord never leads me down the wrong path. He guides me on a path for good.
Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you, to give you a future and a hope.”
- For thine is the kingdom, and the glory and the power
For God is the one with the power (to accomplish anything I need) and the glory (high honor won by great achievements.)
Imagine, sitting in front of Jesus and Him looking you in the eye and saying this prayer with you.