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Farewell to Fathers Day?

Farewell to Fathers Day?

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Published by David Leigh
Excerpt from a book on the Lord's Prayer that is a work in progress. Feedback is welcome!
Excerpt from a book on the Lord's Prayer that is a work in progress. Feedback is welcome!

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Published by: David Leigh on Jun 19, 2011
Copyright:Traditional Copyright: All rights reserved

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06/02/2012

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MUST WE SAY FAREWELLTO FATHER'S DAY?
By David R. Leigh
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"Our Father who art in heaven, " — Matthew 6:9"Father," — Luke 11:2
Ronny was a boy being raised in a family of women, twobig sisters and his mother. Mom had been through three badmarriages, two of them to the same man—Ronny's frequentlyabsent father.As much as we, their family and friends, felt a boy shouldknow his dad, those of us closest to the situation winced when weheard Todd was in the neighborhood. It was no secret that the manwas a substance abuser and a womanizer. When he did show up at
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This is an excerpt from a book on the Lord's Prayer currently being writtenby the author. For contact and copyright information, please see the final page.
 
 
the apartment, it was usually because he needed a handout or aplace to crash, tired of sleeping in shelters and boarding houses, orhaving been kicked out by his latest girlfriend.As you might expect, this resulted in a lot of male bashingat Ronny's house.I was the family's pastor. I observed how noticeably Todd'svisits disturbed Ronny. And I have to admit that sometimes Isecretly wished I could run the man out of town, like a shepherdrouting a wolf, and warn him never to come back.One day Ronny, at age 9, came to see me. He wanted to bebaptized. Concerned about Ronny's young age, I asked a number of questions to see if Ronny really understood the significance of thestep he'd be taking. At one point I explained to him that oneimportant part of being baptized is that it makes a statement to theworld that we love, and have decided to follow, Jesus. In baptismwe say we've died to our old self and have been born to a new life,
 
 
a new way of living. I explained to him that we should be sure wereally mean it when we take this stand because some people makethis statement and then go on to live immoral lives. “While none of us will live perfect lives,” I explained, “we should be careful notmake a mockery of baptism or be an embarrassment to Christ, ourchurch, and our Christian friends.”"I understand," Ronny said. "I know someone like that."My heart sank as I asked, "You do?""Yeah....” he said, “my dad."Sadly, Ronny's dad had not only shamed Christ andChristians by his actions, but he shamed little Ronny—and verydeeply.Ronny went on to be baptized and to be quite involved atchurch. But there was one Sunday each year when I could alwaysexpect Ronny either to volunteer for nursery duty or miss churchaltogether. It was Father's Day.

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