Some things matter, no matter how much society refuses to acknowledge the depth of their impact. The Homer Simponization of fathers and sitcom disintegration of families works out in 30 minute segments, not so much in real life. The devastation of individual lives in the wake of fatherlessness will continue to be felt in the lives of children and grandchildren for generations following the abandonment.
I spent time with a young lady recently as she told her story. It was a life riddled with drugs and destruction culminating in a long prison sentence and the loss of her children. It all started, according to her, when her parents split. She recounts with great detail that the pain she felt as a pre-teen was so intense that she chose hard drugs over even the hope offered in attempting a rehab. Note that was “pre-teen.”
Later in the same day I met a young man who had been suffering seizures since his dad walked out. Literally, the night that his father left, he seized for the first time and has suffered seizures many times since then. Same night. Coincidence?
Fatherlessness breeds heartache at a level which is not comprehensible. The emotional and even physical reaction to the abandonment by the one that was intended to watch over our soul cries out for relief. We cannot easily compensate for the trauma of the leaving.
The children of the first lady that I described were already having physical and emotional problems. One of them had an “anger problem.” Of course he does. And it started with the leaving of his grandfather impacting his mother and now effecting him because of her bad choices made from a broken heart.
Some might read this and dismiss the connection or anecdotally explain that they came from a broken family or absent father or something similar and “look at me, I did what I needed and turned out just fine.” Well, maybe, but maybe that isn’t as easy for others. Some are just wired to feel differently, maybe even feel more. Some are just designed to lead with emotion and passion rather than logic and reasoning. The value of that type of creativity is self-evident but the pain is felt that much more intensely.
There’s only one Cure, there’s only one Remedy. Jesus restores us to the Father that none would be orphans. He takes the broken patterns of destructive relationship and replaces them with His promise of reconciliation. He softens the hardened hearts of the broken-hearted and restores the health of their soul to align with the adoption initiated by His Spirit.