What is a father?
I had so many conversations this past weekend over Easter that continually reminded me of this definition. Some were about broken relationships with parents, some were about relationships with earthly fathers that had been recently restored and a lot were about the only perfect father.
One particular conversation keeps re-playing in my mind though.
Davon, sixteen-year-old, absolutely hilarious, talented and sweet boy. His dream is to be a rockstar or a rapper, which doesn’t seem difficult to achieve because his energy is contagious!
As he told me his story, he laughed every so often as he shared each difficult detail. I think the laughs were to fight the tears. He told me about his family growing up, the friends that he had lost along the way and the people who continually shifted in and out of his life, providing him with no consistency at all. He openly shared all the things he did to try and fill these empty holes in his life, none of them satisfying him like his friends promised.
As I looked into his big brown eyes, I realized so deeply what it means when they say “your eyes tell a story.” Davon had been through more in one year than I feel like I have in my entire life, but his eyes glisten. Through all of the pain that he has endured, he has gained more hope. For after each fall, he has also stood up again, testifying to the amount of strength that his 16-year-old self has inside.
As he told me the story about how his father had completely abandoned him and chosen someone else over him, I crumbled inside. I could physically feel my heart hurting, like I was experiencing intense heartburn at age 21. It made me so sad but it also infuriated me! How could ANY man leave his child? And especially Davon, this precious spirit who so desperately was seeking affirmation and love?
Told he was unworthy.
As I sat there, I prayed as he continued to talk. I prayed that each detail he shared with me would no longer define him. I prayed that he knew that despite what anyone in his past told him, a real father does not abandon his children. I prayed that no matter what labels his earthly father put on him, that he only would accept the ones his heavenly father placed on his head.
He is worthy.
He is loved.
He is sacred.
Lord, please let his heart know, I said over and over and over.
I squeezed Davon’s eyeballs out when I hugged him after he finished talking and Jesus calmly reminded me, “My daughter, just as I watch over you, I also watch over my son. He is and has always been mine.”
Jesus had always been right beside Davon and there was no doubt that his arms of protection continually kept him from harm.
You see, there are so many times in our lives when we let wrong things or sinful people define something that only God can accurately define. He is our father and no matter if our earthly father does a good job of showing us love, we have a heavenly father who is the King of Kings.
He loves unconditionally, passionately and eternally. We can’t be separated from His love. The best part is? no matter where we go, what we do or what mistakes we make, He sees us the same yesterday, today and forever: Radiant and perfect!!!
So, remember this: You are loved, cared for and protected by a heavenly father who will never leave your side. Never allow someone to tell you differently 🙂
Your father finds you worthy and is PROUD to call you “mine”.