A fatherless home is not a good thing. Kids who come from a home where there isn't a dad present are much more likely to become addicted to drugs, join a gang, or even commit suicide. While I did dabble in drugs as a teenager, I got my priorities straight and got out of that rut. I gotta say: I turned out pretty well for a guy who grew up without a dad. Please, don't think this is me looking for sympathy; I just want to share a story of how I didn't become a statistic and how I gained a great Father in the process.
I used to always harbor a LOT of anger and hatred for the father who left when I was little. I always wondered why I wasn't good enough; I wondered what was more important to him than being around to see his son grow up. I never have gotten an answer to that question (I haven't asked either because quite frankly, I don't think I can handle the truth). For 21 years, I was without a dad. I learned to shave without him. I finished high school and college without him. I got married without him. I beat the odds. And then one day in 2010, I got a random message on Facebook from my dad. He knew we were coming out to Arizona (where he lives now) and wanted to meet up. So my wife and I went out to meet with him and his new wife. It was great getting that opportunity! To be honest, I was not mad or hurt anymore. I was glad to have him in my life again. But........that eventually changed.
My wife and I went back to Phoenix this past November for Thanksgiving. We went out to see him one day and things were good. We just talked and listened to stories. Then it happened: with no hesitation, he mentioned that he had never wanted me around. At first, I shook it off. But then I really let that stew in my mind for a while to where now, it's kind of a hang up for me. I haven't spoken to him since and honestly, I don't plan to again.
But this story doesn't have a bad ending. I have since come to know my Heavenly Father and I am changed for the better because of it! I pray someday I will find forgiveness for my earthly father, but it's tough. I know forgiveness is a huge part of being a Christian, and I am working on it. But the hurt of not being wanted by your own father is not something you just get over that quickly. But I'm glad to say I am blessed with an awesome family, church family and friends. And I have my amazing wife on my side who has been there with me through it all. We are changed by God and have never been happier!
Deep down inside, I know that 5 year old boy who watched his dad walk out of his Grandma's house and never return again is still stirring, but the 33 year old version of me is ok. Maybe someday I will squash that pain and be whole. I know through Christ Jesus, I am made new, but this is a hole that (for right now) I'm going to have to live with. And that's okay; it's not going to stop me from loving my true family and loving my God. So, Dad, it's okay if you didn't want me; there's a Father who does.