The Jazz Theologian

The Jazz Theologian

For the Fatherless–In Honor of My True Dad

This weekend is so bittersweet for those of us who grew up without fathers.  The statistics are 40% of all children and 70+% of African-Americans grow up without a man in the house.  It creates a pain and longing that lasts a lifetime.

I still remember my grandmother taking me to a department store and flagging down a random store clerk in the mens section and asking him if he would teach me how to tie a tie.  Till this day I don’t know who that man was but even now, through my tears, I say, “Thank you.”

Actor and poet, Daniel Beaty, knows the pain well.  Every time I watch his poem, “Knock, Knock,” I can’t stop the tears from flowing.

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On this Father’s Day weekend I want to recognize my True Father.  The scriptures say that God is “A father to the fatherless.” (Ps. 68.5) He has provided for me beyond belief.  I have never gone without.  God has been my friend, confidant and sustainer.  When I have wandered from the path set out for me, my Father in heaven (HALLOWED BE HIS NAME!) has gently disciplined me with grace and truth.

I want to shout it from the mountaintops that my God has been a great Dad!

If you need a father then hear his word today, “Here I am!  I stand at the door and knock.  If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me.”  (Rev. 3.20)

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posted June 17, 2011 at 12:27 pm

I’m holding now a 6 month old African American boy we are fostering as I watched and read your post. His mother is not able at this time to give him what he needs. His Father, from a list of several candidates has yet to be found. I listen to the words in the video, tears streaming down my own face not only for my own “knock knock” that never came, but for this precious boy who I pray will one day know the knock knock of his real Father: The One who has shown this Fatherless little girl more grace and mercy than I deserve. I pray this sweet boy will have a seed planted in his heart by being with our family and that the family he ends up with will water that seed… so that he can “knock knock” on any door throughout his life and proclaim boldly that the love of Christ dwells within him. Thanks for sharing Robert. Happy Fathers Day.

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posted June 17, 2011 at 1:09 pm

WOW… very powerful and so touching. Happiest Father’s Day blessings to all dads – both biological and surrogate – and especially to Abba Father who is truly Father to all!

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Lynda Woodward

posted June 17, 2011 at 5:31 pm

Having never heard the “knock,knock” on my door from my father, I have relied on my Heavenly Father my entire life. Though I will forever miss not having an earthly father, my Good Shepherd Father has comforted me through all things. Thank you Father.

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Andrew Hansen

posted June 18, 2011 at 2:47 pm

Thank you for sharing in your struggles as a fatherless child; the pain never seems to subside, but every time we share in our struggles we bring encouragement to others who fail to acknowledge the source of their pains.

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Mark Pedigo

posted June 26, 2011 at 11:30 pm


Thank you for your inspiration. Thank you for the choices you have made in your life to follow the path of life that your true father has set before you including starting Project 127. I sit here today with my own ache of fatherlessness trying to be a father to two boys that God has entrusted me with to be a father and lead them to their true father. God led us on a path to adopt these two brothers from foster care and while God is transforming them, he is using them to transform me. We are now full time in Westcliffe and are unable to attend CCC but we still appreciate your sermons and your inspiration as you lead from your heart. May God richly bless all you do.

Mark Pedigo

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