Thursday, June 11, 2015

Don't Buy The Tie

My heart was captured when I met one kid without a dad and watched the trajectory of his heart change when a man began to call him Son.

Since then, you might say I've become fixated.

This is a plight. It's a crisis that doubles up on itself, one problem leading to another, and then to the next. It's a root, and before you know it, it's a lifetime of reaping pain and regret. It's shame in full bloom, disguised as anything but.
"'Everyone has given up on me,' they think, 'so why should I care about anything? Why should I even try?'" - Fatherless Generation - John Sowers
I see them everywhere now, notice the way their self-worth has bent itself around that dad-shaped void. They're shined up, tough and sturdy on the outside, but it's empty on the other side of that front, and they're prone to cracking.

What exactly does it mean to a "grown" man to walk up and sling an arm around his dad's shoulder? To ask to borrow the lawn mower? To tell gutsy (foolish?) truths to the one person he knows will talk about a better way? At what age does that young man outgrow the urge to yell "Hey, Dad!" whenever his friends are around because it feels good to be able to say it? (Please say never.)

How long does it take for that void to fill or, more importantly, is it even possible?

It is so possible.

But I look at that grown man and the way my heart beats for him and I can't stop wondering what life might look like if we'd found each other sooner, or if there had been someone else affirming and guiding him until it was our turn.

I believe in mentoring with my whole heart.
Cory, surrounded everyday by the fatherless generation populating the jail, believes in mentoring with his whole heart.

My friends at The Mentoring Project beat their drums to the belief that the fatherless story can be rewritten.

This Father's Day, they're urging all of us to stop buying dumb ties for our dads and instead, donate to The Mentoring Project and help recruit, train and match mentors to dad-less kids. (In return, they'll mail your dad (or you or your friend) a personalized card and an amazing gift of your choice.)

I am so moved by this creative, passionate work. I love to partner with meaningful projects, but they didn't ask me to do this. I simply couldn't help myself. This was a no-brainer.
God is on the move, redeeming broken places. He's banging his chest in the stands for every lonely kid trying so hard to play it cool. He's screaming his head off. He's rooting for that boy, waiting for him, out-of-his-mind crazy about him.

The biggest shocker? He lets us be part of His grand scheme, offering a front-row seat to watch for ourselves the way empty places can turn into new beginnings. 

"Turning ugly ties into family ties"

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