For those of us who have either grown up without a father, or felt as though we had no father; or those who just wish to understand what I believe is happening within this generation, here is some very much personal revelation I recently received from the Lord, and correction that has found it's way into my own heart.
THE PLAGUE OF THE FATHERLESS GENERATION
The fatherless have longed for replacements, but yet what they need is a model.
The fatherless must learn to depend on God for their physical, emotional, financial, and other needs. We need models of fathers and mothers so that mindsets might be corrected and that understanding of how to be better mothers and fathers would be the result to come. We need spiritual fathers and mothers not so that they can solely supply all of the needs we have, but so that we can receive guidance and develop the unfulfilled places in our hearts and minds.
To those that have been or are fatherless, you need to experience the full restorative work of the love of God in our life, and understand that you will have to be more dependent on Jesus than ever before, more so then on other people. The Lord surrounds you will people, so that they might help support you, but not to carry you.
What happens when we depend so heavily on people? Two things, 1) you'll never learn how you walk on your own, and 2) eventually you'll end up disappointed and hurt, unnecessarily; and it'll happen because so often you look to others to fulfill every need you have, rather than looking first to God. It's very similar to how the church operates, so many depend upon the pastor that often they don't even know how to cultivate a relationship with God on their own.
A MESSAGE TO THE FATHERLESS
You are not orphaned, for it was God who formed you and knew you in your mother's womb. Although the term "fatherless" may be imprinted on your life because you lack an earthly father, you are loved and cherished by your heavenly father more thank any man or woman could ever wish to express. You have not been forgotten, but rather can hold fast in knowing that God has promised and acted upon his promise to love you for all eternity; and it's for that reason thay you were created.
This understanding of what to do with the fatherless in our midst today, is very much a problem that is recognized but with which no real mass recognition or solution has come, and it's my prayer that maybe this personal note just might help to bring fresh understand on what it is that people are dealing with and how best to assist. Ultimately my heart is that through my thoughts, it would provoke others to point their thoughts to God.
After a complex family situation I found myself, longing for a "replacement" father, for years of my life. What I needed most was a model of a father, so that I might be able to allow change to happen that will produce fruit in my life, and then my children's lives; both physically and spiritually. And I thank God, that change is happening!
Recent revelation compels me to write. I am often blessed with opportunity to visit different churches around the United States, and since I know I am called to the Church in America, I am consistently given the opportunity to observe things in the body of Christ that I feel need to be attended to.
This most recent of thoughts comes out of a conversation that I had while sitting around a dining room table with a dear family in Appleton, Wisconsin. "We (the Church) have traded our ability to live in, breathe, and expose people to the Kingdom of God, and in return we have given the people religion."
What is religion? And why do we need it? I believe the answer to that is that we don't. Religion is something for many that simply pacifies and satisfies the flesh. There is a part of all of us that desires some kind of boundary, consistency, repetition, and stability; and while the character of the Lord never changes and although He is a God of order, the fact remains HE WILL NOT BE LIMITED BY ANYTHING, and especially by religion.
Many of us have been placed in this box called Christianity. When in fact it's the box of religion that we've been placed into, it was just incorrectly marked "Christianity." For the rest of my life I will be doing my best to be a Christian, and yet I will never be able to fully exemplify that in every meaning of the word. To be Christ-like is a process of relationship that will lead us to the heart of God for the rest of our lives.
The Kingdom is here and it is now. We were created to experience and to spread this Kingdom all over the earth. There is freedom to worship the Lord is spirit and in truth. There is the ability to supernaturally receive revelation in the word. There is the ability to experience healing and to pray for the sick and see them recover, the power of deliverance, devine encounters, and all of these things are in ample supply and available to those who believe and understand how the Kingdom of God works.
It boils down to a choice between RELATIONSHIP and RELIGION. I've chosen relationship, and only through a continuous revelation of the word has the Lord begun to reveal himself to me in ways I never knew. My life matters and has significance, because of this relationship that has developed with the One whom created me. I want my life to permeate this love into the atmosphere in every place my foot treads.
I'll close this devotional with a powerful quote out of Bill Johnson's book 'Dreaming With God.'
"We don't need more people without authentic Kingdom experience telling us what we can and cannot have in our lifetime. Those who walk out there faith with an experimental paradigm understand that we will always live in the tension of what we have seen, and what we have yet to see, and that we are always moving on to more in God." "The church is often seen as the group that changes not. Very little of what exists today would exist at all if those who preceded us did not seek to surpass the boundaries experienced by their predecessors. And so it is with the Church. It is this adventure that God has called us to."