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SERMON DATE AND TITLE: 2009/06/21 The Missing Father

A CD copy of this sermon is available.  Specify date & title with your e-mail request, along with delivery information.



          I lost my father not once but three times in my childhood. The first time he disappeared from my life I was barely six years of age. He and my mother had been arguing a lot. He was twenty-five and the father of two sons, but he decided he didn’t want to be married anymore. My grandfather came and picked us up from where we lived in the country in East Texas. We moved in with our Great Grandmother Cox for more than a year. My dad came home a year later and said he’d been missing us and changed his mind about ending his marriage. It was too late. My mother had already divorced him and had a full-time job. He courted her again and she decided to go back with him.

          The second time my father disappeared from my life, I was eight years old. The deputy sheriff appeared at my house, handcuffed him and took him away. I didn’t see him again until just before my tenth birthday. He was convicted of lithographing and duplicating US currency which was a federal offense. What he meant as child’s play for pretend money at private Friday night poker games cost him two years in Leavenworth Federal prison.

I lost my father the third and last time when I was fourteen years old. He went on an out-of-town job on a Thursday, died in a small plane crash on Friday, and was buried on a Monday, June 12, 1956. That profound loss left me searching for a father for the past 50 years. There is a part of me that has always been searching for a missing father.


Pastor Phil  <><<



Sheepfold Ministries - Father's Day

June 21, 2009 - Pastor Phil Roland


1 Thes. 2:1-11

“For you know that we dealt with each of you as a father deals with his own children. . .” verse 11


 “American Fathers are missing. They are missing out on the most critical opportunities of a man or a child’s life: the opportunity to influence a precious child in such a way that is life-transforming for both the parent and the child. Fatherhood is largely ignored by a culture and generation that is more concerned about irresponsibly conceiving and aborting babies than parenting them.”                                              Pastor Phil Roland


A Father who is NOT MISSING, but PRESENT has at least seven traits:


   “Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a

     reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, So are the children of one's youth.

     Happy is the man who has his quiver full of them; They shall not be ashamed,

     But shall speak with their enemies in the gate.” Psalm 128:3-5

          A. His children are a top priority in his life

                        1. He spends his time with what is valuable

                        2. He has Time for his children

            B. His Children are Assets and not Liabilities

                        1. They are his wealth and legacy

                        2. They are a source of blessing in his old age



“My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.” John 10:27

            A. He knows children’s name

                        1. He knows who they are

                        2. He knows their likes and dislikes

            B. He knows their strengths and weaknesses

            C. He knows where they are from

            D. He knows where they are going




          A. He doesn’t play confusing head games with his children

                        1. He doesn’t say one thing and do another

                        2. He doesn’t contradict himself

            B. He sets a good example for his children

            C. He takes care of his body and his mind

                        1. Diet and exercise

                        2. Watches what comes out of his mouth – James 3:10

                           “Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers,

                             this should not be. Can both fresh water and salt water flow from

                             the same spring?”




      "Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one's life for his friends.”

      John 15:13

      “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not

       proud.  It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no

       record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.

       It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.”

       1 Cor. 13:4-7

            A. He lays down his life sacrificially for his children

                        1. He doesn’t drink up or drug up the family’s assets

                        2. He works at meaningful labor to provide for his children

            B. He says “No” to his children for their own good

                        1. He sets a consistent standard of discipline

                        2. He realizes he isn’t their “buddy,” but is their parent

                        3. He always wants the best for his children

            C. He watches over his children to see they’re not exploited



     “Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself

        up for her.” Ephesians 5:25

            A. He loves his children because he loves their mother

                        1. He doesn’t sleep around

                        2. His wife can trust him around other women

                        3. He keeps himself only unto her

            B. He sees to their mother’s physical and emotional needs

                        1. He puts her ahead of himself

                        2. He doesn’t blame her for his emotions

                        3. He owns it if he’s whiney, gripey or resentful

                        4. He confesses it openly and repents

            C. H-A-L-T = Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired



“For the Lord does not see as man sees; for man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart."                                   1 Samuel 16:7b

            A. More than 65% of our time is spent listening

            B. We tend to talk more than we listen

            C. WRONG PROGRAMMING: Children are seen and not heard

                        1. This sets children up for abuse

                        2. No one listens to them when they’re being abused

            D. Children need to know their opinion is valuable




          A. Takes time for God by attending regular worship w/God’s people

                        1. Seeks out the Lord for himself and his own sinfulness

                        2. Isn’t afraid to seek the Bible’s wisdom for his problems

            B. Prays regularly for his wife and children

                        1. Takes regular time to pray

                        2. Teaches his children how to pray

            C. Admits it when he’s wrong

                        1. Apologizes when he hurts his children

                        2. Isn’t afraid to humble himself – Prov. 15:33b; 18:12

                            “And before honor is humility.”

            D. Today's Five-Fold Parental Blessing

                        1. Meaningful Touch

                        2. A Spoken Message

                        3. Ascribing High Value to the Offspring

                        4. Projecting a Special Future for his children

                        5. An Active Commitment to Fulfill the Blessing


Father's Day Statistics


1) 43% of US children live without their father [US Department of Census]

2) 90% of homeless and runaway children are from fatherless homes.

[US D.H.H.S., Bureau of the Census]

3) 80% of rapists motivated with displaced anger come from fatherless homes. [Criminal Justice & Behaviour, Vol 14, pp. 403-26, 1978]

4) 71% of pregnant teenagers lack a father. [U.S. Department of Health and Human Services press release, Friday, March 26, 1999]

5) 63% of youth suicides are from fatherless homes. [US D.H.H.S., Bureau of the Census]

6) 85% of children who exhibit behavioral disorders come from fatherless homes. [Center for Disease Control]

7) 90% of adolescent repeat arsonists live with only their mother. [Wray Herbert, “Dousing the Kindlers,” Psychology Today, January, 1985, p. 28]

8) 71% of high school dropouts come from fatherless homes. [National Principals Association Report on the State of High Schools]

9) 75% of adolescent patients in chemical abuse centers come from fatherless homes. [Rainbows for all God’s Children]

10) 70% of juveniles in state operated institutions have no father.

[US Department of Justice, Special Report, Sept. 1988]

11) 85% of youths in prisons grew up in a fatherless home. [Fulton County Georgia jail populations, Texas Department of Corrections, 1992]

12) Fatherless boys and girls are: twice as likely to drop out of high school; twice as likely to end up in jail; four times more likely to need help for emotional or behavioral problems. [US D.H.H.S. news release, March 26, 1999]



June 20, 2009

Contributed by TIM SEE

Fathers Day Council Facts


The Fathers Day Council of New York gives us these facts and figures:

  1. v     There are 90 million fathers in America today. Of these, about 1.7 are single fathers.
  2. v     The average number of gifts per dad on Fathers Day is 2.5, with a combined value of $70. Very few dads get more than 10 gifts on Fathers day.
  3. v     Sportswear for men was “invented” in the 1940s.
  4. v     Together with the growing national popularity of Fathers’ Day, it gave mothers “social permission” to dress dad “the way she wanted him to look.”
  5. v     On Fathers Day, 90 million pounds of beef are consumed on picnics and barbecues, and 100 million cards are mailed.




The Washington Post

By Juliet Eilperin

Calling himself "an imperfect father," Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) spoke of the need for African American men to live up to their responsibilities during a Father's Day sermon today.

Saying that too many black fathers are "missing from too many lives and too many homes," Obama said these men "have abandoned their responsibilities, acting like boys instead of men. And the foundations of our families are weaker because of it."

Speaking at Chicago's Apostolic Church of God, with his wife and two daughters in the audience, Obama said that more police on the street and job training programs are essential for a safe and sound society, "But we also need families to raise our children."

"I say this knowing that I have been an imperfect father -- knowing that I have made mistakes and will continue to make more; wishing that I could be home for my girls and my wife more than I am right now," said Obama, as his daughters Sasha and Malia sat with his wife, Michelle Obama. "I say this, knowing all of these things, because even as we are imperfect, even as we face difficult circumstances, there are still certain lessons we must strive to live and learn as fathers -- whether we are black or white; rich or poor; from the South Side or the wealthiest suburb."

The sermon marked the first time Obama had addressed a church since he ended his membership at Trinity United Church of Christ, his longtime place of worship, after it became a flashpoint in the campaign.

Recalling his own experience being abandoned by his father at the age of two, Obama said he was fortunate to have his grandparents aid his mother in his upbringing.

"Even though my father left us when I was two years old, and I only knew him from the letters he wrote and the stories that my family told, I was luckier than most. I grew up in Hawaii, and had two wonderful grandparents from Kansas who poured everything they had into helping my mother raise my sister and me -- who worked with her to teach us about love and respect and the obligations we have to one another," he told the audience. "I screwed up more often than I should've, but I got plenty of second chances. And even though we didn't have a lot of money, scholarships gave me the opportunity to go to some of the best schools in the country. A lot of kids don't get these chances today. There is no margin for error in their lives."