What better way to celebrate Father's Day than to give voice to men who are advocating for vulnerable children in our community. It is a wonderful opportunity to hear from them and gain insight into their understanding and compassion for the fatherless and the hurting.
HOW WOULD YOU ENCOURAGE OTHER MEN TO FIND A ROLE THAT THEY CAN PLAY IN CARING FOR VULNERABLE CHILDREN?
Brian: I would encourage men to step up. Passivity is the number one problem among Christian men today. I am guilty of it, and I think most of the men I know would agree that they are as well. We tend to think that someone else will take care of something like the foster crisis. We get lost sometimes in the numbers and forget that behind those statistics are real children, with real stories, and real names, who are in desperate need of someone to love them and point them to Christ.
Danny: James 1:27 serves as a mandate to service, not an option to serve. We are all blessed to serve a Heavenly Father who loves us and who serves as our role model. As men, we have such critical and unique opportunities to be the father to the fatherless. The message is clear - kids need strong men in their lives. Let's work together to be the kind of father we can and should be to our children, but to not limit it. Let's also work together to be the kind of father we can and should be to those children who don't have the father they deserve and desire. It all starts with one child... let's make the commitment to one child and watch the blessings flow as our Heavenly Father says "well done thy good and faithful servant".
Steve: Share my story as a foster Dad. Share that it can be the most challenging task but at the same time the most rewarding. Share with them that the Lord truly cares for the orphan and as a Christian it should be something we desire to be a part of. It may not be as a foster parent but maybe coming around foster parents to support, provide meals, babysit, mentor or be a prayer warrior for them. There is a role that every Christian man can play in caring for orphans. These kids need father figures in their lives so whatever role it may be, get involved and care in some way for them. The Lord will truly honor that!
Kory: It can be a bit intimidating to be one of the only men serving in Ministries like this, but it is incredibly important for us to step up and do what we can. I know that I myself am not yet prepared for childcare, but serving on a foster care team lets me help out in ways that are seemingly simple to me, but make a huge difference for these families. If nothing else, learn about foster care - you'd be surprised at how often it comes up in conversation, and if you educate yourself you can help make a difference just by removing some of the stigmas that society places around foster care.
Jake: Listen to what the Lord has told you to do, and do it! Being involved in orphan care is a very trying endeavor, but the Lord gives strength for each task he gives.
Caleb: Children desperately need a godly male influence in their life. Children are at a serious disadvantage when a father is not present. I challenge the men out there who are comfortable to strongly consider offering some of their time and resources which will make a lasting impact on a child’s life, even if it is only spending a few hours with the child. Take them out to dinner, to a sporting event, volunteer to drive them to an appointment, have lunch with them, listen to them, help with homework, shoot hoops, ask them questions, be present with them so they see that you genuinely are interested in them even if you have nothing on this earth to gain from it. The bible talks about moving into suffering which is exactly what getting involved in orphan care is because it will not always be easy. It will be a change and sometimes difficult and inconvenient, but one thing that helps me is remembering God’s love for me that never changes even though I continually fail.
Doug: By being actively involved and not letting this be seen as something that only women do. Also, by showing that there are a number of roles that can be taken, there are ways for everyone to be involved.
Steven: There are so many kids that do not have a healthy father-figure in their life but there are so many ways that you can help make that possible for a child. Whether it is fostering or mentoring personally, or supporting those that do, there are few things more necessary or important for the long-term health and success of a child.