By Carol Round, Special to ASSIST News Service
CLAREMORE, OK (ANS – June 21, 2015) — “As a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him”—Psalm 103:13(NIV).
Shortly before her death in 1989, actress and comedian Lucille Ball did a remarkable TV interview with Merv Griffin. He asked her a very serious and pointed question: “Lucille, you’ve lived a long time on this earth and you are a wise person. What’s happened to our country? What’s wrong with our children? Why are our families falling apart? What’s missing?”
The red-headed actress answered without hesitation: “Papa’s missing. Things are falling apart because Papa’s gone. If Papa were here he would fix it.”
According to data from the 2010 Census, the number of children living in single-parent homes has doubled since 1960. A January 2013 article on LifeSiteNews.com shared a “Washington Times” analysis of the most recent census data which revealed that even as the total number of American households with children increased by 160,000, the number of two-parent households decreased by 1.2 million.
The article further denoted that today one-third of American children, or a total of 15 million, are being raised without a father.
Vincent DiCaro, vice-president of the National Fatherhood Initiative, blames this growing trend for many of society’s problems. “Deal with absent fathers,” he says, “and the rest follows.”
The same article cited a Canadian study showing that kids whose fathers were active parents in early and middle childhood had fewer behavior problems and higher intellectual abilities as they grew older, even among socio-economically at-risk families.
My sister and I were blessed. Even though our father was often absent for weeks at a time, because of his job, he was very involved in our lives. Though my father had no sons, he didn’t let that stop him from teaching his daughters how to fish, hunt and camp, among other outdoor activities.
Daddy was also available for our Camp Fire Girl activities. He not only escorted my sister and me to Father/Daughter banquets, he often was a stand-in for absentee fathers, escorting one of our friends to the same banquet. This meant he had to help eat two boxed fried chicken dinners instead of one. But he was always up to the task.
My father wasn’t perfect. However, I always knew I could count on him. After his passing in 2007, there was a void in my life. I couldn’t pick up the phone each morning at 8:30 to call him, which had become our norm after my mother’s death three years earlier.
He wasn’t there anymore to answer my questions about the best tires to buy for my vehicle or the best route to take on a trip. Since one of his many jobs before retirement had been a cross country truck driver, he knew the United States from one coast to the other. However, he wasn’t there to help fix my problems anymore.
There is another Father, however, who will never leave us nor forsake us. While our compassionate God won’t fix all of our problems, He will provide strength along the way.
Photo caption: Lucille Ball. 2) Carol Round.
I always love hearing from my readers. Please feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Check out the author’s blog at www.carolaround.com where you can sign up to receive a free copy of her first book, “A Matter of Faith,” and receive her weekly column via email.