Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Remembering Our Earthly Fathers

My Earthly Dad!
 There are many pleasant memories that I have with my father as a child; though not quite the same, when I became a teenager!  It was at that time that he left my mother for another woman. 
I never quite knew nor understood why he did so; but he did and it hurt her very much and affected me more than I knew.  I felt abandoned and rejected and the effects of rejection began surfacing; feelings of abandonment, insecurities and low self-esteem were just a few.  I looked for affection from others and approval through the things I did.  Neither my parents nor I were aware of this then; and very clear to me now. 
 However, the childhood memories I have are more fond memories than not, especially with my father.  When I was young, I remember him taking me with him to the bakery, to his place of work, to the store, and to various places that he went.  He really liked being with me. He and my mother taught Sunday school and took us to church every Sunday and read us Bible stories too; obviously good seeds were planted.  He allowed all of us siblings to climb onto his lap, he swung us around, danced with his little girls, even having a tea party with us and he tickled us; never afraid to show his emotion of affection!   We ate meals together and he taught me to enjoy nature.
Cribbage Board
  My earthly father was quite the sportsman, physically involved in sports, a professional baseball player and a coach and teacher; and he worked as an athletic director and umpire in his later years.  He took us fishing and aquaplaning, boating, tubing and we also helped him with building a dock at our family’s lake cottage, cooking and more. Some of my best memories, though, were playing card games, board games and my favorite was Cribbage.  I can still hear him say, when dealing the cards, “Cut ‘em deep, you’re bound to weep, cut ‘em thin, you’re bound to win!” 
Canasta and Bridge were my mother’s favorites and she was good at them and taught us how to play these games as well. 

  My father showed affection towards me more than my mother; in fact, I cannot remember my mother doing so, when I was young, though she may have.  She did all the things like cooking, washing clothes etc. They both laughed and smiled and yet my mother was so busy all the time and was quite intense, quite the perfectionist, and not as approachable as my father.  In fact, most of my remembrance of time with my mother was related around working in the house or the yard and she was the strong disciplinarian.  I must say, our house was always clean and spotless!  
I remember as I grew older my father gave many hugs and kisses; as my mother did occasionally, when I was older.  He was affectionate and stroked my cheeks softly and the cheeks of the grandchildren too; he loved their soft skin.   
  I can still smell the freezer where my father put the snacks that he bought at the bakery and the ice cream. And there are other smells and sounds that bring back memories from over 50 years ago!  Both my husband and I have talked about the memories we have of our parents. My husband has memories of his father when smelling Old Spice cologne, which his father wore.  Every time my husband talks about it, it brings tears to his eyes, as he misses his earthly father, and loves the experiences in the depths of love with our Heavenly Father.
 Paul Wilbur, a Messianic Jewish believer and recording artist, was sharing with us personally, on our Heavenly Father and told us that Abba, an intimate name for God the Father, in Hebrew means, 
‘I long for your smell.’ 

The Father's Mother Heart Towards Us 
   With every thought, there is an emotion, communicated through the five senses; hearing, seeing, smelling, feeling, and tasting, which go directly to the brain, forming memories, stored in our brain.  It is through our five senses that love is first communicated to us. This love is called Storge love; first realized through our mother.  We’re always with her, the one who feels us inside, as we’re being formed and nurtured, growing in her womb.  We are a part of her and she is a part of us; loving us in deeper ways, than our earthly father can possibly do. A mother, who is excited about the child growing within her, will often talk or sing words over the child, touching her belly, comforting the child with loving and affirming sounds and touch; welcoming and blessing the child, as she cares for her own physical body.  A father will begin doing some of these same things; these actions from both parents, communicate love, acceptance, and affirmation, which build safety, security and trust within the child; beginning before his or her birth!  Clearly, these are examples of the Father’s Mother heart for us.  
 Father God is right there forming us inside our mother’s womb, from conception.  So, at conception, the brain begins to form.  Father God loves us and He creates us for love, by love and in love, to receive love; yet many of us have not had this same foundational love communicated through our mothers and/or fathers.  This lack of nurturing the whole man, when we are children, is affecting the words that come forth from pulpits even today.  Many of our leaders are meaning well, yet they themselves have love deficits, only Father can fill. 
 Created in His image and likeness, we are made to receive faith-based thoughts, positive words that build us up; not negative, fear-based thoughts that bring destruction.  Simply put, fear is learned.  

Perfect love cast out fear, and every fear!  For He did not give us a spirit of fear, to put us once more into bondage, for fear has torment, He gave us power and love and a sound mind.  So, a breakdown can take place, against His original intent for us, at even the time of conception.  How lovely and grateful I am, that He is the Father to the fatherless!  
Having knowledge of this Truth and knowing that fatherless means orphan, we know that Father can fulfill these orphaned places or love deficits within us! He longs to Father us!
A void existed in my heart that only Father was able to fill!
 While my father was gone, I went looking for the love I was always created for; finding only counterfeit affections, like many today.  My father’s absence created a void in my life.  Though this was not the only cause for my bad decision making, nevertheless it was a big part.  Sadly, he also allowed my mother to take charge of areas that he really needed to be in charge of and more straightforward about.  This may have made her look bad, in my eyes, for many years.  It wasn’t until I was almost twenty, that my father returned and my mother forgave him.  This action of forgiveness is one of the greatest gifts my mother gave to me; it went deep into me.  I believe forgiveness opened a door for me to see her in a different way, in the years that followed. Her own upbringing caused her not to show affection; you can only give what you have.   The loving affection that my father showed towards me became the foundation to carry the tenacity, from my mother, that sees me through tough times, even today.
 Lack of affection is affecting us in how we see ourselves: an identity crisis! Affection means a tender attachment, feelings and emotion towards another, over and above reason, fondness, warmth, bent of mind, passion, partiality.  Affection is connected to our self-esteem. The synonym is love.  The antonym is enmity, animosity or dislike.   The antonym reveals the work of the accuser, the enemy of our soul and his desire to kill, steal and destroy us.  Jesus brings life and life more abundant for us and reconciles us to our Heavenly Father.

  Once my longings for love were realized when I gave my heart to Jesus, I then discovered there was more; and the more was not the works that I was exhausting myself doing.  
I later came to my final destination, in my Father’s heart; where I learned that I am loved for who I am in Him, not for what I do or even don’t do.  I am consciously aware of His presence with me, throughout the day; communing with Him, as I'm on a journey.  He loves to be with me and I can do nothing apart from Him.  I am His beloved child! 

 Now I know why Cribbage was my favorite game…this was my ‘one on one’ time with my father, my earthly father.  Just like when I go to the playground, in visions that I have, with my Heavenly Father:  We are always on the teeter-totter together.  I see myself running to the slide, the sandbox, the swing, and the monkey bars; and He is saying, with great excitement, ‘Deborah, look, they have a teeter-totter!’   (Some call this a see-saw.)  Then I run over to join Him and we get on the seats together and He begins pushing me up in the air and then I push Him up and sometimes He holds me up in the air and laughs, enjoying me!  It was awhile before I knew why He liked the teeter-totter, and in His time, He told me.  He likes the teeter-totter, because it is the only playground equipment that requires more than one to operate.  He loves to relate to us and He longs for us to relate to Him; as He also loves all of us relating to one another, to our fathers and mothers, sisters and brothers, pastors and friends….Family!
 Because Father God is both father and mother to us, it is important for both to be involved in our lives. No wonder, there is so much attack against this happening in our relationships in marriages, in the work place, in the treatment of women around the world and including the way women are treated and misunderstood in the church.  
(Honoring and respecting women is part of the restoration that will be taking place, before the return of Jesus.)
A Mother and Father's Love Complete Us!
 There is both masculine and feminine in our Heavenly Father and also in each of our parents.  However, they are not perfect, as our Heavenly Father is perfect; and they were not meant to take His place.  They were meant to show us what He is like by their actions and to direct us to Him.  It is also important for us to forgive them both, for what they did or did not do.  When we let go of all that our fathers or mothers did or did not do, the more freedom will ensue in our own lives and a greater love that flows in and through us to others. 
 Being willing to receive the love always meant for us is most beneficial for us personally and for the kingdom of God.  We become more lovable, Joyful and approachable; this can only cause increase of the greatness Father intended for us to live in.  Father can fulfill every wound and love deficit that we have from our childhood years and beyond.  He is the restorer of all things that were lost!
  The personal, ‘one on one’ time with our Heavenly Father, who we may call Abba Father, Daddy God, Papa God, is available to each of us, 24 hours a day and 7 days a week; for He is always present and longs to be a Father to us.  He never leaves us or forsakes us and never gives us up, never leaving us without support.  He has adopted us as His very own, loving us and liking us.  His thoughts are always on us; with an amazing, extravagant, outrageous and ferocious love for us! 

 The Father’s Mothering heart for us is comforting and safe, peaceful and nurturing with great feelings attached. He is longing to be near us, drawing us close, snuggling in the warmth of His embrace; compassion above reason, instilling hope and assuring us that all is okay despite what we are going through.  This is the trust that we need today, that only comes through our Father’s Mother heart, yet often being ignored because it makes no sense, seems over the top and shows emotion.  Love simply shows emotion!  This reminds me of Mary and Martha; both are needed but unless we snuggle, we will struggle!
By Deborah Fisher

Scripture References:

Genesis 1:27, 2:15-23, 1Kings 8:27-30, Psalm 139, Malachi 4:6, Matthew 5:48, 11:28-30, 18:21-22, 23:37, Luke 1:17, John 10:10, 14:1-14, 5:30, 17:21-23, 2Cor 5:18, 6:18, Galatians 3:28, 4:6-7, Eph. 2:13-:18, Col 1:20, Hebrews 13:5, 2Timothy 1:7, 1John 4:18
My father, Glen Curtis Cooper, Sr.

Information on the brain is used by permission by neuroscientist, Dr. Caroline Leaf.  For resources on the brain and for more information on this subject, go to www.DrLeaf.com

Growing Up With Dad
Service to Country You Know

I think I knew him

Though comings and goings were many
Service to country you know
Standing, small hand in large, watching the big boat disappear
Mom would cry, being brave
I went on without him
No swimming lessons or little league
Service to country you know
Vacancy in growing up, those awkward years towards manhood
Mom would laugh, being brave
I know I missed him
Graduation, marriage, grandchildren
Service to country you know
There was no substitute, only and empty void never filled
Mom went on, being brave
I’m sure I loved him
Though tears never came with his passing
Service to country you know
To many miles, to many years, separation numbed the loss
Mom cried, no longer brave

by Bill Fisher

Walter L. Fisher

Heroes are made not born
Adversity and disaster the smithies of their forging
Passion and drive bubbling in the cauldron of that one heated moment
A point fixed in time, a second in eternity
Self doubt cast aside for others
Rushing forward into an unknown future
That draws the meek and simple towards a glory unperceived
Innocence propelled by circumstances endowed with courage.
Not called, not coerced, but compelled
Driven towards that moment of destiny, frozen in time as theirs
Caution aside, unknown ahead, self left behind
Into that valley of uncertainty, valor as their armor
Emerging from the other side as those who triumphed
Remaining as those who tried and failed
The same reward is proclaimed for both
Those who go forth, to be remembered for that quest, as heroes

by Bill Fisher

It is wonderful knowing that even though my father was absent, a great portion of my life, that 
I have a Daddy God who has never left me, nor deserted me.  
My father was a decorated war hero, I am proud of him.  I loved him as much as he would let me; 
I miss him. I have learned that what our earthly fathers did not fulfill or impart to us is readily and lovingly given by our Heavenly Father...Bill Fisher           


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