My deepest shame was being fatherless. One Father’s Day my kids and I went to church. That Sunday, the worship was a little different from other worship services before. There was no music, no singing. It was so quiet except for those inevitable coughs here and there, and the sound of pages turning. I love that sound.
The pastor stood up and said,
“Lets all kneel where we are and pray, if you can’t you may remain in your seat. He then asked the congregation to “Just call on the Name of the LORD as you view him. Just talk to Him.”
It was a little risky for me. I was short of two years in this new journey. I whispered, “Edam”. I couldn’t talk so I kept silent and let the tears speak for me. I knew he understood me more than I can ever understand myself.
There must have been 2000 people in the building, give or take a few. It was a multilingual church that the sound of whispers was like a distant rolling thunder. It was amazing. It was beautiful. It was in the building but it sounded far away.
The LORD is an all-knowing GOD that he heard every syllable in that room and more. He knew our hearts. And He love each one of us unconditionally.
I thought – if people would realize that we all came from the same place we would learn to love each other, agree to disagree, and accept our differences. We would not take kindness and generosity for granted. Instead we would develop an attitude of gratitude. And do as Brother Lawrence did — Practice his presence and find peace.
TAKE THE RISK
by John Eldredge
We aren’t meant to figure life out on our own. God wants to father us. The truth is, he has been fathering us for a long time—we just haven’t had the eyes to see it. He wants to father us much more intimately, but we have to be in a posture to receive it. What that involves is a new way of seeing, a fundamental reorientation of how we look at life, and our situation in it.
First, we allow that we are unfinished men, partial men, mostly boy inside, and we need initiation. In many, many ways.
Second, we turn from our independence and all the ways we either charge at life or shrink from it; this may be one of the most basic and the most crucial ways a man repents. I say “repent” because our approach to life is based on the conviction that God, for the most part, doesn’t show up much. I understand where the conviction came from, battle it constantly myself, but still—it’s faithless, is it not? We must be willing to take an enormous risk, and open our hearts to the possibility that God is initiating us as men—maybe even in the very things in which we thought he’d abandoned us. We open ourselves up to being fathered.
FATHER what know not, teach us. What we have not, give us. What we are not, make us for your Son’s sake. Amen.