I had the privilege of performing a wedding last weekend. The bride is a godly young woman, and the groom is a fine young man and Jesus follower. As a couple they are a matching set. One can see how God has created them for each other and will use them mightily.
Not only did each of them have spiritually mature, dynamic parents in the front row, but in the second row was a roster of Jesus-following grandparents. Behind them sat uncles and aunts, extended family, and friends all celebrating the bride and groom. They are, at the very least, the third generation of Jesus-followers in their family. We celebrated that.
At the reception, as I watched the bride and her dad dance, I was suddenly very sad. My emotions caught me off guard. Why was I feeling grief when the bride and her dad were celebrating? I suddenly realized why: Our work reminds me that hundreds of thousands of dads and daughters will never celebrate like this. The joy I watched was an anomaly.
Most men in prison did not have a good relationship with their dads. Growing up without good examples of how to be fathers themselves, many incarcerated dads don’t have the skills to help their own children, and the cycle continues. Those families aren’t experiencing the joys of multiple generations following Jesus together.
After the sadness came righteous anger. This needs to change! You and I have been called to be part of the transformation of families and the restoration of homes. I am determined that more dads, daughters, and whole families will experience the joy I saw last weekend, and since it is God’s will, it is possible. Let’s do it together! Learn how at www.prisonfellowship.org.