Why You Shouldn’t Ignore the Fatherless
I have worked with the fatherless for 14 years and what I’ve seen would make you weep. Many of the kids I serve are schooled by the harsh realities of life before they ever learn from a teacher. Their stories are difficult, seemingly unreal and greatly impacted by an ever-increasing fatherless epidemic. Often the men in their lives are:
Violent and Abusive
Repeatedly the mothers of these children look for love in the arms of the aforementioned men because they themselves were not fathered. Believing the lie that sex equates to love they bring yet another child into this world. Thus, a vicious cycle is perpetuated, lending itself to single parent households with multiple children each fathered by a different man.
For an entire generation this is the norm. Gone is the American dream of a 4.5 family nestled behind a white picket fence. This dream has been reduced to a distant mirage; out of reach and foreign.
As a result many of these children are angry and they don’t know why. Little things like a broken pencil or a difficult math problem sky rockets them from zero to one hundred in seconds. They become bombs and schools are dangerous minefields attempting to teach the mind and heal the soul.
When violence, poverty, and broken promises are a child’s daily norm their communication may become a thrown desk, a ripped book, or an act of defiance. It saddens me to say this fury has replaced peace and innocence for many. And unfortunately, this reality is not isolated to one school; the problem is spreading across the nation.
If I am honest, I will admit on more than a few occasions, I’d rather get in my car, drive to some suburban bubble and pretend environments like this don’t exist. The temptation to ignore the signs of a fatherless generation woos me daily. Sometimes I don’t want to know about that carjacking on the South side, the latest drive by shooting, or the umpteenth teenage pregnancy. I just want a Utopian society instead of the constant bombardment of societies woes.
This is not to say the fatherless dilemma is relegated to the city. Although it appears to be more prevalent and readily seen in urban areas, this issue is not confined to one geographical location. For this reason it cannot be ignored.
As much as I want to anesthetize myself, I can’t.
The God of the universe stepped out of heavenly bliss and into a broken world in order to provide hope for those who need it. If we choose to follow His example I believe there are three things we must do about fatherlessness.
# 1 Care
Life’s demands are unending. Everyone has a cause and fatherlessness may not be high on your list of priorities. I get it.
However, caring is doable. Compassion only requires a change in your perspective. Allow yourself to hear, know, understand, and be concerned about the plight of the fatherless.
# 2 Pray
The Bible says, “The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.” James 5:16 (NIV) I choose to believe it.
And so I get down on my knees and speak the names of those I know and the ones I don’t who are fatherless. I pray for their healing, hope, courage, freedom, forgiveness and peace. Against all doubt I choose to believe God will intervene and alter the trajectory of their life’s circumstances. I pray like it is their only hope, because it just might be. I am compelled to invite you to join me.
# 3 Act
For years I carried a burden for the fatherless. I found myself either talking, analyzing, debating, wrestling, or crying about the subject. God combined my passion with personal experience and birthed this blog.
Is there something He wants you to do?
God is so concerned about the fatherless He mentions the word 43 times in the Bible. Don’t disregard the prompting to act; it may change the life of the fatherless and yours too.