Father Wounds: Absent Fathers

Children of absent fathers often respond quite warmly to the Father’s love—they have usually never seen or felt anything like it before, so initially it is quite exciting. Remember, however, that children with absent fathers are all about the 5 senses, impulsive actions, and finding the next high. Thus the encounter with God typically never lasts very long. A while back I was reading a biography of John Lennon, yet another child of an absent father. Apparently even John accepted Christ while watching a Billy Graham crusade on TV. His “salvation” lasted all of several weeks. The excitement fades, conflict occurs, doubts kick in, and suddenly the child of an absent father needs a new high, a new adventure. Of all the types of brothers I counsel, those with absent fathers are probably the most difficult to counsel for the simple reason that they show up for counseling raring to go, last for about a month of sessions, and then drop out, never to be heard from again. Since this is their pattern with women, children, jobs, their latest adventure, and so on, I shouldn’t be surprised. Nonetheless, I find myself shaking my head at their constant inconstancy. You can trace it all right back to the absence of a father who failed in teaching the vast importance of boring, routine, and sometimes even painful tasks in life. Imagine trying to be a Christian without the ability to stay the course, sacrifice and suffer, stand your ground while under attack, and work out your salvation with fear and persistence in the face of every obstacle. Some of you don’t have to imagine…

Indeed, if you are the child of an absent father and you have made it this far in the book, I am quite shocked. Please, by all means, keep going! You are obviously in the process of overcoming your father wounds—more power to you! Just remember that you need to find a spiritual mentor or father figure to fill in the gaps of what you missed. Unfortunately it is not easy to find mature believers with both the passion and skill necessary to father others. The good news is, you can go a long way towards mentoring and fathering yourself through the teachings and writings of mature Christians. Much of my mentoring has come in such fashion: C. S. Lewis, Andrew Murray, Oswald Chambers, Neil Anderson, Paul Yonggi Cho, Rick Joyner, and John G. Lake are all men I have turned to time and time again for wisdom and guidance. Much of what they teach is over my spiritual head, but I have absorbed enough truth to seriously change my life for the better. When I write Battle Stations! (book #3 in the Pureheart curriculum), I will pass on to you all the essential truths I wish a spiritual father had taught me long ago!

Selection taken from Special Ops! Volume 1