Today we celebrate Father’s Day. The Ten full movie We thank God for fathers everywhere who nurture their children with gentleness and respect. And for fathers who are providers of firm emotional foundations of trust and love that encourages children to play, and explore and question without fear. We pray for fathers who live with regrets—for whom today is a reminder of their failure to spend time and show interest in their child’s life. And for fathers who will be lonely—whose children have died or no longer visit or converse. O God, Father these fathers today!
I remember reading a confession of a young father as he reflected on an incident in which he had lost his temper and irrationally lashed out at his child. He said something like this: You see, my child, I’ve never been a father before, and I have to learn to be a father, just as you have to learn new and different things. Fathers make mistakes, too. Fathers get angry and lose their tempers, and fathers feel bad and want to say it, but don’t sometimes know how to say, ‘I’m sorry’. It’s not easy being a father, but I am trying, and I am doing the best I can. I hope you will understand and forgive and help me …
So today we also pray for children who struggle in their relationship with their father. As in Pat Conroy’s
In Scripture we are told of the Forgiving Father, but don’t fathers also need forgiving children? May God give us power to forgive … that our lives may begin anew.
Courage and peace, Alan