A Father's Heart

It’s Not Too Late

Three Angels Broadcasting Network

Program transcript

Participants: Xavier Morales (Host), Gordon Fraser, Denry White


Series Code: AFH

Program Code: AFH000012A

00:01 A good father takes time to play
00:05 He has strong integrity
00:07 He is someone that is truly dedicated
00:12 He is 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
00:30 Hi, welcome to A Father's Heart I'm your host Xavier
00:33 and today's topic is It's Not Too Late
00:35 Overcoming the fear of being in your child's life
00:38 And with me to talk about that today are Denry and Gordon
00:42 How are you guys doing today?
00:44 Doing great, real good
00:45 So overcoming fear, a lot of single mothers out there without
00:50 the father next to them and a lot of fathers do want to come
00:53 back. But a lot of times maybe they're afraid they don't
00:56 know how. What can we do to help them understand that
01:01 it's ok to come back. Do you really think they're afraid?
01:06 That's what I'm actually thinkin about. Are they really afraid
01:10 of comin back. I don't think they're afraid, I think
01:14 there may be circumstances that's keepin them from comin back.
01:19 Or, if they're afraid it is because they feel they're not
01:23 adequate enough or they feel that because I have left
01:29 the child for so long, now to come back in the child's life
01:34 am I going to be rejected by the child?
01:36 For example, my nephew. His father's been out of his life
01:42 for a long time and no matter what the mom tried to do
01:46 the father would not get into the child's life
01:49 so I guess he has laid it down, he called and my nephew was
01:54 gonna go visit him but my nephew said, you know what
01:56 I don't wanna do it. So it's not that the father might not
02:01 might want to come back, but he's almost 19
02:06 so you've been out of the life for so long so I think that is
02:10 the fear of rejection from the child. I think that is probably
02:14 the issue. I think it's an excuse. I mean, you know, yes
02:18 there may be some fair rejection or whatever the situation was
02:21 with the mother but I think it's an excuse. I had a situation
02:24 that went down. I had a father who is maybe in his 50s
02:29 and his son is maybe almost 30 and same thing. He wasn't
02:35 involved in his child's life and he was so kind of correspondence
02:40 was able to get in contact with the child. And the child,
02:43 basically the son who is now an adult was like, you know
02:47 was willing to try but the father was like, no I think
02:51 it's too late. You've done so good without me, you know
02:56 you don't need my in your life. I've made a mess of my life
02:59 you've done better with your life. So I think they try to
03:02 make excuses. Some of us men try to make excuses and we don't
03:08 want the responsibility. I think that's what the bottom
03:11 I don't know if it's necessarily fear. I think we just don't want
03:14 the responsibility that a real taking care of the child is
03:18 Is it because that he felt that he has messed up his life
03:23 so he's like I don't want to get back in his life to mess it up
03:27 He's done well by himself so leave him alone
03:29 so it might be just that, that he doesn't want to mess it up
03:34 But I mean fear can be paralyzing. I know a lotta times
03:38 when we're fearful, especially as men, we were never afraid
03:43 we never want to face that fear. We'd rather discard it and say
03:47 I just won't deal with it. But the 'IT' they're talking about
03:51 is your child. Maybe afraid to come back and have to face the
03:56 mother. Come back and face shame. Come back and in some
04:01 cases, or many cases, face child support, face the court
04:05 You know fear is a drivin factor for many men that are missing
04:09 in their child's life. The fear of not having the respect
04:12 fear of rejection, like you said Fear comes in many different
04:18 forms and it can be paralyzing and it can also be a cop-out
04:21 like we said. But, what if there are elements of fear that drive
04:26 these men to stay away rather than not facing their fears
04:30 they'd just rather pretend that it doesn't exist
04:33 If that father, if that man wants to come back in the
04:37 child's life and there's that fear I think that the one thing
04:41 that he needs to do is to seek some counsel so he can get over
04:46 that fear. There was a young lady I was counseling with and
04:52 her father's been out of her life, she longs to have a father
04:56 in her life. But he doesn't want to come back in her life
05:00 He left and now he just can't see his way back in her life
05:08 and it pains her every time. Now he tried to come back
05:14 but he went and did the same thing. He left.
05:18 And I think he did more damage than good. So he needs to be
05:23 fixed. Whatever the issue, what ever he's dealing with
05:27 he needs to get it resolved. Go to counseling, seeking some
05:31 counsel as to resolve that. Get himself strong so that he can
05:35 get back and be a positive example in that young lady's
05:39 life, or in a child's life.
05:45 Once again, I really think it's an excuse. Tryin to avoid the
05:49 responsibility. There was a documentary on an infamous
05:54 gangster and he told his story of his father in his life
06:00 he said the only time he remembered this one thing
06:03 his father came picked him up from his mother's house
06:05 took him to a hotel, gave him some money, left, never seen
06:11 him again. He was 12 years old
06:15 I think some of them just want to avoid the responsibility
06:19 they really do. We can call it fear, we can call it all
06:25 I think they just don't want the responsibility
06:28 or, and if you want to give them something, some of them
06:33 their track records or their fathers and grandfathers
06:36 they're just following the example of their culture
06:38 or the other men around them. You know you have some cultures
06:41 you're like man, do you read a book or Bible or something
06:47 you know in some cultures where the men are just absolutely not
06:51 involved in the children's life and they're still married to the
06:55 woman but they come home from work or wherever they came from
06:59 sometime they came home not even from work, they're out all day
07:03 they come home, their interaction with the children is
07:06 did you do your homework? No? Brush your teeth and go to bed
07:09 That's it, every day. Play - that's for mom.
07:14 Food - mom, bonding - mom Dad - all I do is just check on
07:18 you. Did you eat, ok, fed, that's it.
07:21 But if I really want to come back in my child's life
07:24 I will make every effort that I can to do it.
07:28 So yes it will be an excuse if that father does not want to
07:32 come back into the child's life. But really, if the father
07:36 realizes that the best thing for me is to be involved in
07:40 my child's life then you need to first start talkin with the
07:46 mother. Start there and once you start talkin, opening those
07:51 lines of communication, then you reach out to the child
07:54 It might be for 5 minutes or 3 minutes at first
07:59 just to get reacquainted and then sometimes when you get
08:05 to that point that child will want to know that why want you
08:08 in my life. You need to man up so that you can literally
08:13 sit down and say this is what I'm dealin with so that the
08:18 child knows this is what the dad is dealing with. And so
08:22 those are the things might be one of the reasons why
08:26 I was saying they're just afraid or they just don't wanna
08:30 come clean with what they're dealin with and why they left
08:33 in the first place, because that question will be asked
08:37 by a child. Excuse me, I'm gonna grab the pillow on this one
08:41 because this is personal. You know I hear you guys stories
08:46 your father's unfortunately deceased but your father's still
08:49 in your life. This is real to me. This topic is real to me
08:53 because in my situation you know when we were in Jamaica, you
08:57 know he was in and out, in and out you know, in and out but he
09:03 didn't have any great examples at all. I'm here now in the US
09:09 I receive a call now and then from him. Every once in a while
09:13 And he's always asking me for something.
09:18 That's my relationship with him. You know, I would, I would
09:23 love to, I mean once in a while we may talk and have a
09:27 conversation and sometimes I put the kids, my children
09:31 on the phone while I'm talkin but he's so out of touch with
09:36 them that even my children don't know who this is.
09:40 I have to keep re-introducing him to them, cause they know
09:45 my step father and they call him dad, they see how we interact
09:49 but when my real father calls me I have to re-introduce him to
09:55 to them and sometimes you could see, he wants to but then he
09:59 know how to and all that and sometimes I'm just like, just
10:03 listen to them. Just ask them their age, ask them what school
10:07 they go to, you know just talk to them. You know, ask me that
10:14 what am I doing myself? Don't always call to ask me for money
10:19 and then I was helpin him because I was tryin to hold on
10:22 to the little bit, ok at least he needs me so I was sending
10:28 money and then I feel guilty because I'm like sometimes
10:31 there would be some hard times especially when I was in school
10:34 you know you've been in school, sometimes all you got is $5 left
10:38 sometimes and then you get this call. Whatever you can send
10:43 But I'm like I have children at home, I have children at home
10:47 that need food on the table and all I have is enough just for
10:51 them. I want to take care of you but I have to take care of them
10:58 You didn't do that for me and like I said it's hard to say its
11:05 complain that he was fully absent. We moved from the
11:08 country but for the time we were in Jamaica or whatever, he was
11:12 in and out. He played a lot of hide and go seek with me
11:16 more hidin than seekin and now I have my own children
11:23 I am taking care of my family. I don't want to have this
11:28 relationship where it's just about you just call me for a
11:31 handout. I want, hey tell me about your dad, tell me about
11:36 things you went through as a child. I don't know none of
11:38 those Gordon. I don't know none of that stuff.
11:40 Have you ever asked him?
11:43 I asked him and it just goes like, rumble, rumble. Yeah you
11:48 have a sister, yeah a sister blah, blah
11:51 and then go back to.
11:56 It's empty. It's empty. So sometimes that's why I said
12:00 I don't think it's the whole fear thing. You guys can
12:03 polish it up. I'm not polishing it up. It's I don't want to be
12:07 responsible for you. I don't want to be responsible that's it
12:10 Have you asked him what he's afraid of?
12:13 No. I mean, like I said, it's really difficult when he calls
12:17 sometimes I really, and you can be mad at me, the world could be
12:20 mad at me, he can be mad at me I see his number on my phone
12:23 I see his name and I don't respond.
12:27 And I'm scared because when I'm hearing your story now
12:31 of when, because my dad has, he does have diabetes
12:36 But two things, I don't want to answer and say I don't have the
12:41 money because sometimes I don't and then second I don't want
12:46 just that's it, that's the only time we have a relationship
12:49 So I rather sometimes just not answer
12:51 Maybe you need to tell him that
12:52 You just need to straight up I've tried, I've tried, I can't
12:56 muster it. I even talked to my counselor about it, I can't
12:59 muster it. It can't come out. Because I still want something
13:05 and this is all I get, So I'm like ok I'll just settle with it
13:11 I'll just settle with it. But then at the same time
13:13 he needs help sometimes and I can't sometimes but sometimes
13:18 I can and then I say, man I can do this for my children
13:21 my children, my wife. I'm not trying to be selfish and
13:25 understand what I'm sayin. It hurts. It really does hurt
13:29 I really does hurt when you don't have your father
13:34 you see what I'm sayin, when you don't have your father
13:37 this thing hurts. No one can take his place. I have my
13:40 stepfather, I thank God for him. He came in but he's not my
13:44 biological father. He doesn't look like me. When I look in
13:48 the mirror I see my dad, I don't see my stepfather
13:53 When I look at pictures I see my dad. There are things goin
13:56 on in me inside that I would like to know did that go on with
14:00 you too? So this stuff hurts
14:03 So when fathers are absent in their children's lives whether
14:08 because it's a macho thing not to be involved or you scared
14:13 or you and the baby mother, whatever the situation
14:16 you are hurtin a child and some of us we move on with our lives
14:22 let me stop, I'm gettin upset about it, I really am
14:27 Really I'm gettin upset, it hurts man
14:30 It really hurts. Yeah, I understand
14:35 I think you know, a lot of times it's definitely a cop out
14:39 and I think you we need to look at the fact that
14:43 a lot of men use fear, and because we're not taught to
14:46 deal with fear we just hurt our children. We choose to say
14:52 I'm afraid, I'm scared instead of sayin I need help
14:57 I don't know how to get back in my child's life, please help me
15:01 we just say you know I won't do it at all, not knowing that our
15:04 child, whether child or grown man is still waiting
15:08 these children grow up, become men and women and are still
15:13 waiting for that moment. There are children out there that
15:18 become, that grow up and become adults and then something
15:22 happens and that chance never comes.
15:27 And that's the most selfish thing a parent could ever do
15:30 a child's father could ever do to a child.
15:34 I understand, a lot of times, yes fear is a deciding factor
15:38 for a lot of people. I mean when we get lost and ask for
15:42 directions a lot of times we're afraid to ask. That's a form of
15:45 fear and we don't because our ego, same thing with fathers
15:48 that are absent. They feel lost some of them just don't wanna be
15:53 but the ones that try to be they let that fear, whatever
15:57 you want to call it overpower them and then just don't show up
16:01 and eventually they never, God forbid, eventually that's
16:06 they may never see their child again. And it's for what?
16:09 Like I said early on that father needs to get help. There is
16:17 something that is blockin that whatever that relation,
16:22 reachin back, reachin out to that child and maybe
16:26 that father, some of them just have children too early
16:30 at an early age and have never dealt with whatever's goin on
16:34 inside of them. I think that's where it needs to start
16:37 They need to be able to deal with what's goin on inside
16:39 of them before they can even reach out to create a
16:43 relationship. Because your father might reach out and
16:47 to start that relationship but because he's messed up
16:50 he might mess you up more because of some of the things
16:54 that he would say. If he has not dealt with what he is dealin
16:57 what he's facin, I've had a lot of people who had the same
17:05 situation where their fathers are not comin in their lives or
17:09 for whatever reason and the one thing that I, that we keep
17:13 comin back to is the fact that whenever that father re-enters
17:18 that person's life they leave more scars
17:24 because they have not been healed.
17:26 You know I hear what you've been saying and I'm really tryin to
17:30 hold it, this is really hard. Some of them they went out of
17:37 the, either step out of the grounds of marriage or
17:41 as teenagers or whatever not bein faithful to God,
17:44 livin in sin, have a child out of wedlock
17:47 And some of them do try and some of them don't whatever
17:49 But I'm talkin about the fathers and I'm speakin against my
17:54 filthy culture as a West Indian and as a Black man
17:58 I'm talkin about the fathers who just go and have children
18:02 for one house and move to the next house and have children
18:04 and move to the next house and you don't invest nothing in your
18:07 child's life. And then when life turns on you and you're hurt
18:14 now you want help from them?
18:17 I'll never forget Gordon, this whole calling someone Daddy
18:23 for me, when my stepfather called me son, that meant the
18:28 world to me, it changed my world. When I was younger
18:32 I was put in a position that I resent on both sides
18:38 my mother told me to call my stepfather Dad
18:42 Daddy whatever because my sister was about to be born
18:46 and so that she can hear me calling him Daddy, right
18:51 and be used to it and I was like, he's not my dad
18:55 then I go to Jamaica to visit my real father
18:59 who's not been in my life
19:02 and now this man is comin in my life; my real father's not
19:06 been in my life and I remember I called him his name
19:11 he was walking, we were at my great grandmother's funeral
19:14 he was walking, he turned towards me and told me
19:16 don't you ever call me by my name, you call me daddy
19:19 But I'm saying to myself you didn't earn that
19:23 You didn't earn that. Now my stepfather after years of me
19:28 givin him a hard time, we both back and forth, whatever
19:30 he neglected me and you know a hard time he's earned that title
19:34 I can call him daddy because he was there
19:38 he wasn't perfect, no. But he was there but I can't call my
19:42 father my dad. I can't. It's not personal. Yeah I call him
19:47 my father cause that's biological, that's his title
19:49 you brought me into this world but I can't call you daddy
19:54 because you weren't daddy
19:58 This guy, he's daddy. You're father.
20:01 You're father and I see when you read in the Scripture why
20:05 Romans 8 says we can call God both daddy which is Abba
20:12 and father because He deserves both of them
20:17 He was personal, he was down there. You ever see your child
20:22 cry daddy, daddy. It's personal and when your child wants
20:27 to brag and tell everybody that's my father you know,
20:29 that's my father. So God the Father has deserved that
20:35 and He, I know He'll heal my heart and for those young men
20:39 and young ladies out there whose father just went from, I have a
20:42 cousin whose father has 11 children. I have a friend whose
20:48 father has 30 some children, for what?
20:52 So for those children whose father was goin from house to
20:58 house and never was involved in the child, you have a Father
21:02 and you have a Daddy. And He's God in heaven, the same Father
21:07 that Jesus had and trust me there's no joy
21:12 more sweeter than having him in your life.
21:15 I like what you said though, culture. Culture, It's sad
21:19 that we've created this epidemic into a culture
21:23 My wife, her father's not in her life.
21:29 He's somewhere we just don't know where.
21:33 You know I'm old fashioned, I wanted to ask for her hand in
21:35 marriage and ask his permission
21:38 Even the government probably can't find him, he's so MIA
21:41 he's Missing In Action. And he's out there having kids
21:47 and he's old and my wife you know, I see what it does to her
21:53 even though I love her, she's a strong woman, I know
21:56 and I see what it does to her and it angers me, it really does
22:03 How can you bring yourself to procreate and leave a wake
22:10 of destruction and call yourself a man and a father. You're not
22:16 a father. You're just a machine that's out there pro-creating
22:21 You know I think that's one of the things we need to deal with
22:25 as men who either come from that background or have somebody
22:28 cause I've seen that in my own family. My mom told me you know
22:33 the day I did something like that's the day she'd take me
22:35 out of this world. You know, we we need to, as men deal with
22:40 those and the anger.
22:42 And they treated us Gordon as though we were notches on
22:46 their belt. And they'd go around and the thing about, the reason
22:51 why I notice because as a young teenager I wanted to
22:54 do that because all the men in my family were doin that
22:58 because of the culture, culture. So when I was about 10-12 years
23:04 old and one of my uncles had a child at 16, I was like
23:07 Yes! When I get 16 I'm gonna have a child but then
23:10 the reality, I had a breakdown, my step dad and I
23:13 and I said, uh uh I don't want nobody else raisin my child
23:18 and it's the Lord who smacked me on the back of my head
23:20 and said, uh uh, Enough. We're not gonna keep these generations
23:25 cycle and cycle. Uh uh. I need you to stop it.
23:30 I need you to demonstrate now and so we waited until we got
23:34 married and we had our children after we were married
23:37 and it's a joy to go home to them.
23:40 It's a joy. I long to see them and it's a joy to go home
23:45 to my children. But this is not only a West Indian culture
23:49 it's the American culture, it's the world culture
23:52 Everybody. Where men just have these notches on their belts
23:56 and then the children are left to face the repercussions
24:01 of the mess but on the second hand of this whole issue
24:11 how does that child react when that father wants to come back
24:14 in their life. That child needs to be open to receive that
24:19 father if the father wants to come back in their life
24:22 No matter if they messed up, messed up real bad
24:26 You know in my, people that I know, I don't want to call names
24:33 people that I know here, taking care of the father who didn't
24:40 take care of them, now in that old age
24:45 and it's that gotta take care of the father and to find out
24:48 that not only are they taking care of the father
24:52 them and some others, but somebody who they thought
24:59 was a family member is a brother.
25:07 So there's all kinds of stuff that's goin on in homes
25:12 but sometimes God will allow this thing to come full circle
25:17 Sittin in your lap, your father is callin you when he needs you
25:20 for help. How're you gonna respond to that?
25:25 Yes it's hurtful, yes it's hard, yes it's difficult
25:29 but how does God expect you to respond to that?
25:33 I see how my wife responds to stuff.
25:36 She's taking care of her dad
25:41 So I know it's possible but you've got to get to that point
25:46 But the thing is too again, you can't wait till it's too late
25:50 True. That's the problem. Waiting till it's too late
25:53 so either the child or children die or the father dies
25:58 We're waiting till it's too late so even if the father doesn't
26:02 step up, as a man of God why don't we, as much as it's gonna
26:07 hurt, but if my God, my Jesus took 3 nails and
26:13 a crown of thorns we need to try our hardest to reach out
26:19 And if my God and your God and your God can embrace us when
26:25 we mess up what are we to do when somebody else messes up?
26:33 We've got to meet them with grace, the same grace
26:38 that our God extends to us. We're gonna make mistakes
26:43 People are gonna mess up but I think when they're tryin
26:46 to come back, in whatever way, we need to be able to embrace
26:50 them. We need to embrace them with love
26:53 Thank you guys. This is a hard hitting topic. Thank you
26:57 Thank you. We definitely gotta pick it up again
27:02 To our viewers out there, if you have any questions
27:05 send them in to AFH@3ABN.ORG
27:09 Again, AFH@3ABN.ORG
27:11 But it doesn't matter whether you call it fear, cop out
27:15 an excuse, fear drives sometimes people to do nothing
27:21 do not let the fear of coming back in your child's life
27:25 overpower you. God says He does not give us the spirit of fear
27:29 and even if you don't serve God overcome your fear and find
27:35 your child. Be in their life. It's not too late
27:39 The only time it's going to be too late is when you or them
27:43 are in the grave and by then there's nothing you can do
27:47 about it. So please, please work on it, overcome it
27:52 work through it. You can do it Find a resource to help you
27:57 But do not let it be too late


Revised 2017-01-24