Fathering a Community

We have often made the comment that we are not mentors, but fathers, because mentors get paid to deliver skills, while a father decides to invest his or her life in to other people. Though our heart were right, we were not prepared for the journey God has put us on. So, did we feel when we held our first child in our hands at her birth.

It is this realization that I have her now, she is all I have, and I need to make it work, that make you learn as fast as possible, do not mind any sacrifices or financial implication. Everything else become subject to this single objective: “I must be a good father/mother to this child”.

Our three children were just a practice run, for what we are about to step into. A community of people, most of the elderly men and fathers died in the long-drawn-out civil war, leaving a village full of un-fathered men. They do not know how to treat their wives, care for their children or put in a day’s work.

We can call them lazy and bad husbands, but this is what a fatherless generation looks like. They have no hope and can see no future. Today is all that matters, the implication of a future not a concept they grasp. Cap this with an education system that is driven by the same fatherless generation.

Where do one start? We knew all the scriptural references to the concept of fathering, understand that it is the key to unlocking a transformation of a village, but it did not come with a practical manual.

If I say that we had to find the road in our heart, it might sound so artificial, but the truth is this place and its people address various issue of the condition of my heart, that disqualified us in many ways.

Laying down our own preconceived ideas and aspirations, and coming to an understanding that God has given me these people, so what makes then different to my own children?

Through the years we have learned how to work with our new household, raising some of them to become sons and good fathers to their wives. Crying with them in death, laughing with the children playing around us, rejoicing when their new born calf looks better then ours.