Participants: Xavier Morales (Host), Gordon Fraser, Denry White
Series Code: AFH
Program Code: AFH000001A
00:01 A good father takes time to play
00:04 He has strong integrity. He is truly someone who is dedicated
00:11 He's not afraid to show his love
00:15 He is a caring provider
00:19 And he's a kind spiritual leader
00:22 These are just a few ways to describe a father's heart.
00:29 Hi and welcome to A Father's Heart. My name is Xavier
00:32 and I'll be your host today. I am a father of two children
00:36 Two little girls. Unfortunately, kids don't come with manuals
00:39 So this program caters to the fathers that are out there
00:43 and we're here to talk about what it's like to be a father
00:46 What is it? What does it take? Do you have to have a manual?
00:49 Do you have to Google anything? And right now we're just gonna
00:52 discuss, and please join us in conversation today
00:55 for the topic of genetics. It's not your child's fault
00:58 With me today is Gordon and Denry. Welcome
01:02 Thank you, thank you. Thanks for having us man
01:05 Denry how many kids do you have? Man I have 3 children
01:08 3 children. 2 boys and a little girl.
01:11 And they are the delight of my life man. They bring me joy
01:15 and they also bring me gray hair but I love them.
01:18 And Gordon? I have 2 children. I have a boy, Justin
01:22 he is 19 years old, on his way to college and my daughter
01:27 she's 16. Both of them are the delight of my life.
01:31 Matter of fact I'm havin tears already in my eyes because
01:34 my son is gonna be leaving home soon, so. I love them.
01:39 Man, I'm looking forward to that day.
01:41 But he's closer to it so it's realistic for him
01:45 But for me I'm countin down.
01:48 12 more years to go, for one.
01:51 You wait until you get to that point, I know, I know
01:53 how hard it is, I'm gonna change my mind, yeah my daughter
01:56 my oldest is 4 years old and then I have a newborn and
01:59 I don't want to grow up. 7 years old, that's good enough for me.
02:03 and stay there, don't go any further. But it's just crazy how
02:06 have you ever heard when they say you know growin up at home
02:09 or anything like that, you know you're just like your father
02:12 Yes man, oh man, my mother Let me grab my pillow for this
02:17 my mother has told me so many times you remind me of your dad
02:21 or you're just like your father. Or you know she would say my
02:25 my dad's name, you're Delvin you know and sometimes in the
02:28 positive but a lot of times in the negative.
02:32 Lot of times in the negative.
02:35 So cast the blame, let's say you're to be blamed for all of
02:39 your father's mistake. And really as fathers we shouldn't
02:42 cast blame. We should be able to take the blame
02:45 from all of our mistakes in ourselves. I think what we
02:49 do as fathers is that we kind of project our mistakes
02:52 on the child and that shouldn't happen because that child
02:55 takes that blame throughout their lifetime.
02:59 And you know what it did for me was that, and my mother did it
03:05 in love, maybe just out of humor but you're just like your
03:08 father, even if I was datin a girl you know, my father was a
03:11 I guess a womanizer would you consider and so she was like
03:14 you know you remember you are your father's son.
03:16 And so the thought would always be in my mind, man even if I had
03:20 good intentions, or a pure mind set because she keeps sayin
03:25 you know you're just like your father maybe I should be more
03:29 like my father. Maybe I should be a womanizer.
03:32 And so those questions were always in my mind
03:34 am I being like my father or am I not?
03:38 So it really didn't help you. Not really, no.
03:40 And it's difficult because like my 4 year old daughter
03:44 she is from my previous marriage and a lot of times
03:47 you know unconsciously some of the things that she does
03:50 kind of play on my mind, I have to catch myself
03:53 because it's difficult you know to separate yourself from that
03:58 when you see some of the traits and everything, whether you
03:59 come from a, whether your child is from a loving, caring home
04:02 or comes from a divorced home it's difficult to be a father
04:07 when you see some of the traits from, you know, the mother
04:11 or anything like that and you have to catch yourself,
04:13 or even when you, like I said I resonate what you said
04:16 Denry because growin up, I grew up in a normal, typical home
04:20 and you know my dad, my mom but there's a lot of times
04:23 my mom would be like, you're just like your father.
04:25 you know, you're just and it made me want to alienate myself
04:29 with you know as far as like my temper and things like that
04:32 my dad, I loved my dad but you know when they said that to me
04:36 why work on myself, why be better, why just not continue
04:40 I mean if I'm just like him why even try?
04:43 What's different for me in my home, my mom never said that
04:48 I was never told that but somehow you know as I got older
04:53 I realized that I'm just like him. You know my dad would
04:56 always have a whole bunch of stuff in his pocket
04:59 receipts whatever it is and it hit me I think I was about
05:03 20, in my 20s and I put my hands in my pocket one day
05:07 and I pulled it out and I'm like Wow I'm just like my dad!
05:11 But I never had that image imprinted in my mind
05:16 but I realized later you know that I'm just like him
05:19 and as a child what I remember clearly is not wanting to be
05:26 like him because he wasn't always home, he worked away
05:31 from home and he'd just come home on the weekends and
05:34 whenever he came home he still didn't have time for us,
05:37 he was out doing everything else. We went to church
05:41 and he was not an Adventist, so it was just myself, my sister
05:47 my adopted brother and my mom But I said to myself, I'm not
05:52 gonna be like him, even workin work ethic, workin all the time
05:57 no time for the family. You know what I realized, I realized that
06:02 even as a pastor I have to really force myself and check
06:09 myself so that I don't become like him just spendin all the
06:14 time workin, workin on this, workin on everything else
06:18 but my family. So I made the effort to slow down and
06:23 realize you know what, you gotta spend time
06:26 with the children. So even though I didn't have that
06:29 imprinted in me because I think it's something in the DNA
06:32 I realized that I have these tendencies as my dad's, I know
06:38 that we can throw it away, I think we need to realize
06:42 that and not blame our children but put the blame on ourselves
06:47 and realize you know what, this is me and I can make some
06:50 corrections here and I like to look to my Heavenly Father
06:54 because I think He doesn't blame us for anything
06:59 He takes the blame on Himself and I think that is what matters
07:04 we're takin the blame on ourselves. Yeah.
07:06 It's interesting he came from that perspective.
07:09 Like you know how much he was trying not to be
07:12 For me, I find myself a genetic match of my dad
07:16 A twin of my dad. I was lookin at a picture what I mean by that
07:20 lookin at a picture, years ago I was in Florida visitin relatives
07:24 my aunt, my dad's sister and opened up the album
07:30 and I saw a picture of myself and I was tryin to say to myself
07:34 when was I at this event, the event that was goin on?
07:38 Like when was this? My aunt was like that's not you
07:41 that's your father. And I was so shocked that I was lookin
07:47 at a picture of my dad but I thought it was me.
07:50 And it's so much, you cannot avoid it sometimes.
07:54 You just can't avoid being who you are. And so you use it
07:59 now I tend to use it now for good to bring out the good
08:04 in my father. The bad stuff like he said, I'll let the Lord
08:07 work those things out. But the good traits of my father
08:11 is humor, those things so now instead of saying I'm not gonna
08:14 be like my father, my father is in me which I had no choice
08:18 to be like my father.
08:19 I think we make a choice, we have to make a conscious choice
08:23 to say you know what, I'm not gonna go down this road
08:26 and a lot of fathers are not making those conscious choices
08:31 This is not where I wanna go, I want to be different
08:34 I'm going to model something else or someone else
08:38 sometimes we don't have that right image from our
08:42 biological fathers but we can find somebody to model
08:47 whereby we can choose to make different choices.
08:51 That's the thing you know, we have to you say come to a
08:55 realization of it because that's affecting us as fathers
08:58 Whether we like it or not it's affecting us consciously or
09:01 unconsciously and it's ok in a way to say, you know, it's there
09:07 but it's not ok to keep going with it. If we know it's
09:10 something wrong, especially where we raise our children
09:12 because then we keep that generational sin essentially
09:15 that generational mishap, you know, going with our kids and
09:19 you know I think about it with my dad, I love, like I said,
09:22 I love my dad, he was very authoritarian so it was my way
09:27 or the highway and for me I've taken a different approach
09:30 it's been difficult, it hasn't been perfect and I've had to
09:34 pray about it a lot and study a lot and really come to a
09:37 realization, you know, I don't want to make the same mistakes
09:40 kinda like what you said Denry, you know, you bring out the good
09:43 and my dad is great but I'm trying to do the good there, he
09:47 the good qualities that he has and I talk to my kids, I
09:50 dialogue with them and instead of saying my way or the highway
09:54 I kind of, even though she's 4 and my newborn she's goo and gaa
10:00 but my wife and I give her the attention recognizing that from
10:04 now we're giving you the attention you need
10:06 not perfect because I'm gonna mess up but at least I know
10:10 I can do better than what I did before and it's taking
10:13 a lot of work, you know men are prideful and we're father
10:17 you know, we don't make mistakes so it's different, I mean I
10:21 don't know, what do you think about that?
10:22 I mean what do you do with that?
10:24 Well in my case I'm torn between two worlds.
10:28 my biological father and then my step father.
10:31 Actually, three worlds. My biological father, my stepfather
10:35 and then my Father in heaven
10:37 Hmm. Right. But my biological father, genetically,
10:42 things come out. Uh huh. And he's not around you know, so I
10:46 want to ask questions about certain things, my temperament
10:49 and these things but he's not around, so I can't ask him
10:53 But then I noticed I've adapted things from my stepfather
10:58 who's not my biological father but because he was around
11:02 he's the one who raised me, you know, I found myself
11:06 patterned and I said the same thing to God, I don't want to be
11:09 like you when I grow up.
11:10 Because there were some things goin on in our home
11:12 and I find out I'm just like him, so I'm like my biological
11:17 father, I'm like my stepfather both for some of the good
11:20 and some of the bad. And I have to consciously, literally
11:24 just like man, it's almost like you're saying to yourself
11:29 who am I going to be today? Who am I going to be today?
11:35 I'll tell you. this is kinda tuggin at my heart's strings
11:40 and I'm tryin to hold it together
11:44 I love my dad and so let me just put this disclaimer out there
11:50 But there's things he did, how I was raised, he was never
11:57 bein there, he was never there
11:59 I resented that whole, my father for a long time
12:09 to the point where when he got sick
12:17 I now didn't have time for him
12:19 Wow, wow, wow
12:23 I did everything not to be available
12:28 Then he got blind and he needed me and would call me
12:33 yeah, it affected me and I didn't know how much
12:38 it affected me. I literally had to look outside of my father
12:46 and outside of the pain and really ask God to
12:51 change my heart because my heart was real locked
12:56 where my dad was concerned. And it's just because there was no
12:59 time. There was no time. I mean we would go ridin in the car
13:03 we would go do some things but it was different, we were always
13:06 goin to somebody's house and there it was just me over there
13:11 and my dad is doin what he needs to do,
13:13 so I was always by myself. So when you get to that point
13:18 when I'm grown I don't have time for you when you need me
13:24 The older he got, he got sick, in a nursing home
13:30 I wouldn't go. God had to work on my heart.
13:35 I had to start to see my father through the eyes of my
13:38 Heavenly Father and I thank God that I was able to come to grips
13:44 with that. And were able to go to the nursing home, singin,
13:50 prayin and talk to him and develop that relationship
13:56 that we really didn't have and I really had to forgive my dad
14:01 to move forward or I'd never be able to move forward
14:05 So the genetics really played into my life and the one thing
14:11 that I definitely wanted to make sure that I'm not in the same
14:17 place with my son and my daughter.
14:19 So I do everything that I can. Am I perfect? No.
14:23 I make mistakes, yes but I share with them
14:28 I talk with them, we have fun and I spend that time because I
14:33 want this generational issue to stop.
14:37 You know it mustn't go past me. Because I don't want them to
14:40 feel and experience the pain I experienced.
14:42 I've been sharing a word with my son - legacy.
14:46 My older son I've really been on him about this. What is the
14:51 legacy that you are creating for your children?
14:56 The next generation, even for your brothers and sisters.
15:00 And a lot of times we look at our dads and we feel like
15:05 that's when the world started. Our dads, We forget they had
15:09 a father too. Yeah. And they had a grandfather and sometimes
15:14 we have good legacies that are continued or bad legacies.
15:18 My step dad, right, similar to Gordon, deep tissue moment here
15:23 my step dad, he, he and I love the guy. I love him
15:29 I love him. I love both of them
15:32 But he took the time, for him to come into my life
15:36 and take me on as his son, it took a long time but I didn't
15:39 I didn't see that because he got married to my mother when I was
15:44 about 11 years old so I expect him to become this father
15:47 champion to take me up to the playground, take me everywhere
15:51 teach me how to play bat, all these things that I wanted
15:53 but he didn't do that. He was actually neglecting me
15:58 and I was blamin and I was mad and resentful, I was resentful
16:03 he used to call me when I was in college he wanted me to fix
16:06 the computer or say something, I hated his answers, his phone calls
16:10 but I come to find out, his real father, we had a heart to heart
16:15 and he told me his real father his biological father
16:20 totally neglected him and the guy only lived maybe less than
16:25 50 miles from him and up to this day would not pick up the phone
16:29 to call him. But now my father and I, I mean we're like, I'm
16:35 like buddies and anytime he calls me I can call him
16:40 and it's like a good dialogue
16:41 because we've had that heart to heart.
16:44 We've talked about the bad legacy and now we decided
16:47 we want to establish a new, good, sound legacy
16:51 in Jesus Christ. Hmm.
16:53 I like that because again we are genetically predisposed to
16:57 somethings you know but it's up to us not to blame our
17:00 children, I mean it's not their fault. It's not their fault
17:03 the way they are. There are some things they're gonna do
17:05 because they have the character like my daughter Ann
17:09 when I deal with her sometimes it's like a reflection of myself
17:13 It's frustrating. I'm like I wanna Ahh and then I'm like
17:17 wait a minute. What did I do when I was a child?
17:19 Ok I did worse. Never mind, let's talk about, it's difficult
17:23 you know but I look at it as, ok you're genetically predisposed
17:28 you have the DNA that's just how it is from both mom and dad
17:32 so a lot of the traits that she has are my own. And like my
17:35 parents told me you gonna pay for the things that you did
17:38 when you were a kid. I see it. I'm like Lord did I, I did worse
17:43 I'm like what do I do with this what can I do with this?
17:45 And I try to address her, you know, in a way she'll understand
17:49 and maintain discipline but at the same time it's difficult
17:53 because nobody comes from a perfect home
17:57 Hmm. Nobody. And we have to turn, it sounds cliché but
18:02 it's true we have to turn to the Father, you know, God the Father
18:06 to understand you know that our kids are not going to be what
18:12 we necessarily want them to be a 100%. But they're gonna be our
18:16 kids no matter what. You know even after death we're still
18:19 gonna be remembered as the father of this child.
18:21 And it's just hard. It's difficult because again
18:26 all you wanna do is, you're just like, you're just like
18:29 as a cop out, not to deal with the issue. But you're hurting
18:35 your child and you're just alienating your child and I just
18:38 you know, what do you do in situations where you know,
18:42 your temper is up because your child is doin something that you
18:46 know they're doin, do you ever take the time to think that
18:49 maybe you did that or worse? What do you think?
18:52 I think you have to take time out when your tempers are up
18:55 and you're about to really go into your child. Uh huh
19:00 Maybe it's best at that point when you're upset
19:04 to back out, to just pause and say, you know what I'm gonna
19:10 deal with this when I'm calm because if you deal with that
19:14 child when your temper, you know when you're flaring
19:16 let me take you into a window of my little life
19:22 ummm, growin up, that little readin book and for some reason
19:28 I couldn't get this word Joe and I would say
19:34 Mr. Toe builds a house instead of Mr. Joe builds a house
19:38 and my daddy, if I'm readin, he's there, he would just
19:44 be so mad and he'd go in and I tell you that would just freeze
19:52 I mean lock me up and for a long time readin became a problem
20:02 because all I would feel is hands comin or and I think
20:11 it's the same thing when we're upset instead of takin it out
20:17 on the child, pause, take a moment, walk away
20:24 then come back and deal with the issue. When you're calm,
20:28 when you're more rational, your thoughts are clearer
20:31 then you can actually deal with the issue. Instead of
20:35 right there in that moment because what you do you can
20:38 can cause traumatic effect to, to really affect the child
20:45 I'd really just pause, walk away
20:47 Man, I have made so many mistakes by just being a father
20:56 I have made so many mistakes by tryin to not be like my father
21:01 Oh Lord. Both of them. And just like, similar to you
21:07 I have done that where I have reprimanded my child or uh uh
21:12 you know he's havin a hard time readin and because I'm bein
21:16 impatient, yes, and it's for my glory, not for his benefit
21:22 because I want my son to excel, I want him to be this A+ student
21:28 in school, I want him to be the spelling bee champion
21:31 so that I can look good and feel good about myself
21:34 I'm bein impatient with him and so when he's readin and I'm like
21:40 how many times are we gonna go over this word?
21:42 you just said this word. But I'm forgettin he was a child
21:46 and I sometimes, you know the funny thing that God does
21:49 with us, we have flashbacks sometimes of our childhood
21:52 My word was "the" I couldn't get that word "the". Two words
21:59 the and the number 3. I'm West Indian so sometimes I have
22:03 difficulty in sayin the number 3 I say tree. Hmm. And even now
22:09 while I'm tryin to say it I have to think about making sure I'm
22:12 I'm sayin it right. And so my mom was like you know having a
22:16 difficulty with me but now my son was having difficulties
22:19 and instead of me bein patient and rememberin how hard it was
22:24 when I was tryin to read now I want my son to just overnight
22:29 get it. So that you can make me proud and I can walk around
22:33 with my chest high. But God wants us to be patient, He's
22:36 patient with us. Yeah. But we don't want to be patient
22:39 with our kids.
22:41 Yeah. One Sabbath morning, well after church, sorry Sabbath
22:45 afternoon my son did something he was very young
22:52 and I got real upset, that flashback that was my dad
22:57 kind of flashback. And I you know, Lord forgive me but I
23:04 used the rod and I spanked him so much
23:11 that he actually cut his feet. Mercy!
23:16 On the side of the bed. I'm not proud of it. Mercy!
23:20 And he was bleedin. Mercy. And I didn't stop
23:27 To think of how much it affected him. And I prayed he doesn't
23:33 remember the stuff, you know. My wife had to come and say
23:37 that's enough. He was a child. And I stopped.
23:43 Never ever when you're angry or upset spank your child
23:49 Walk away and then when you're clear you can come back
23:54 and deal with the issues. Yeah.
23:58 It's a lot. I mean you do that you get angry, you wanna as men
24:03 we wanna react, we wanna stop, we wanna discipline the child
24:07 make sure they stop but like you said, never, never ever
24:11 hit your child when you're angry you know and do anything like
24:15 that. Don't discipline, just walk away, take a breather
24:18 come back when you have your head right.
24:21 And then you'll see you know, cause other times when you
24:24 spank your child or discipline you know, you regret it later
24:28 you know it hurts. Because you are like you know, I probably
24:31 should've done that differently but again we're mimicking what
24:36 we grew up with. It goes back to the whole genetic predisposition
24:39 and we were doin what we were taught to do.
24:42 So I don't know. Anybody out there have you gone through
24:45 anything like that? Ha ha ha I'm sorry I'm not laughin
24:49 at you, I'm laughin because you know this is right on. You know
24:54 And I'm not tryin to be philosophical or psychological
25:00 But I wonder sometimes the reason why we're so hard on
25:04 our children is because of some insecurity that we have
25:08 of ourself. Hmm. We're trying to make them and mold them to be
25:14 perfect because, you ever hear of you know like the dads who
25:19 take their children to the playground, first they're just
25:22 having fun but after a while they're gettin them into high
25:25 school volley ball or football team and they're tryin to
25:28 relive their dreams through their child.
25:32 And they push them harder than their coach or their trainer
25:36 why you, why did you drop the ball? I remember watching the
25:39 show a long time ago and the guy had a fumble in the game
25:43 and everybody forgave the guy I mean the team they got the
25:48 ball back but the father was so hard on the son for fumblin
25:52 the ball. Later on in the story to find out the father failed
25:57 he got kicked off the team because of his drinking habits
26:00 and he was like tryin to relive his complete, his, his past
26:07 through his child. And so a lot of times I feel that that's why
26:11 we are so hard on our child because we're insecure of our
26:15 failures so we try to make our children perfect
26:18 But I thank God that's not how God treats us.
26:22 I thank God He don't treat us that way.
26:24 I don't think that the only thing is insecurity though
26:26 I think it's because sometimes what we have actually learned
26:34 from our parents, from our fathers that we project
26:39 that on our children and some men are sure about themselves
26:44 but we don't know how to do anything else, you know, we just
26:48 don't know how to. I'm not proud of some of the things
26:51 that I've done to my children especially my son, because
26:57 he was the firstborn and I wanted to sure that he was solid
27:02 you know, so I poured everything negative and positive into him
27:06 If I can take some of the stuff back, I would
27:10 I think for our viewers at home being a father is not easy
27:15 it never was meant to be easy
27:17 but it's not impossible. We have a Father in heaven
27:21 who deals with us on a constant basis when we're disobedient
27:26 we're rebellious, we're messin up.
27:29 He never deals with us in anger, if He did
27:31 you know we'd need more protection.
27:34 But we have a Father in heaven who loves us
27:37 And even though we're not perfect, He is and He's willing
27:41 to help to be the best fathers we can be.
27:45 So please take some time, take some time with your children
27:49 and love them the way God loves you.
27:52 Thank you.