The hidden half of domestic violence
How to have eternal life
Father's Day 2008
Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the
great and dreadful day of the LORD:
And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the
heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the
earth with a curse.
When one looks throughout history, this prophecy may appear
strange. Why would Elijah have to turn the hearts of fathers to
their children and the children's heart to their fathers when
throughout history and especially when Malachi was written this had
never been a problem?
In Roman, and later in English common law, children were viewed as
the property of the father, who had a legal obligation to protect,
support and educate his children. Fathers had the right as well to
sell their children, and to enter them into enforced labor. In
divorce, until the mid-nineteenth century, fathers had a near
absolute right to custody, regardless of circumstances. (1)
In the United States, the first modern Father's Day celebration was
held on July 5, 1908, although Mother's Day has been observed since
the Civil War.
According to IBISWorld, a publisher of business research, Americans
are expected to spend at least $11 billion on gifts for Father's Day
in 2008. This is about $7 billion less than the amount spent on Moms
for Mother's Day, which is more steeped in traditional gifts, some
of which tend to be more expensive than Father's Day gifts. In
economic terms, the average per capita spending on Father's Day is
expected to be in the range of $27.60 in 2008 (2)
A possible origin of Mothers day may come as a surprise to many.
One school of thought claims this day emerged from a custom of
mother worship in ancient Greece, which kept a festival to Cybele, a
great mother of Greek gods. This festival was held around the Vernal
Equinox around Asia Minor and eventually in Rome itself from the
Ides of March (15 March) to 18 March. (3)
Throughout Biblical history, children belonged to the father.
Birthrights were given to the first born son by the father. In
family relationships, the focus was on fathers and fathers had a
major role in the up bringing of not only their children, but their
children's children too.
And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine
And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt
talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest
by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.
God felt a father's presence was so important, He did assure that
Jesus had a step father who although we do not hear much about
Joseph, I am sure he obeyed the above very well and did teach Jesus
these things. We often only hear about Mary and overlook the role
Joseph played so Hobby Lobby's 2004 Christmas ad was a blessing
when it included the picture found here (4)
Yes there were conflicts between fathers and their children but
overall, fathers had an important role in helping their children
become productive members of society. Most will agree that mothers
tend to want to keep children in the nest while dads want to get
them to be self sufficient.
I am sure that many thought the prophecy of Malachi 4:5-6 was
strange when it was written but when we look at our recent history,
we can see that it makes sense.
Since the advent of the feminist movement, we have seen children
torn away from their fathers. It started with the Industrial
revolution when fathers started working in factories instead of
raising their children themselves on small home farms. This
separation escalated rapidly in the 1920's when courts started
considering the "tender years in child custody cases.
The paternal preference was gradually replaced by a maternal
preference, based on the "tender years" presumption. The tender
years doctrine (intended to apply to children under age 6) was
originally invoked to determine temporary custody arrangements in
English law, giving mothers custody of infants only until they were
ready to be returned to the father. But by the 1920's, the maternal
preference for custody in English and American law, regardless of
the child's age, became as firmly fixed as the earlier paternal
preference, and was encoded in statute in all 48 states. (5)
Today custody is given "for the best interest of the child" but in
reality, it is not the best interest of the child that is
considered. We have had many fathers tell us that they lost custody
to their ex even though it was shown that the mother was very
abusive to the children. Although just as in domestic violence, we
have been given a lot of false information which the main stream
media happily passes on, most do not know the real facts of child
abuse. Society is given the impression that most child abuse is by
men. If we see an news article about a parent abusing their child,
most think another dad has abused his child but 2/3's of all child
abuse is by the mother. (7) and many more mothers sexually abuse
their children then is known (8) We have had many men and women
confirm this in Shattered Men.
Another reason the prophesy in Malachi is significant to us today is
We hear often that fathers have abandoned their children at record
levels. I even recently heard something on a Moody radio station
encouraging fathers to reunite with their children. Most often it is
not the fathers that have caused the breakdown of the family unit.
• 37.9% of fathers have no access/visitation rights.
• 40% of mothers reported that they had interfered with the
non-custodial father's visitation on at least one occasion, to
punish the ex-spouse
• 50% of mothers "see no value in the father's continued
contact with his children
• 11% of mothers value their husband's input when it comes to
handling problems with their kids. Teachers & doctors rated 45%, and
close friends & relatives rated 16%.
• "The former spouse (mother) was the greatest obstacle to
having more frequent contact with the children."
• 70% of fathers felt that they had too little time with their
• "Very few of the children were satisfied with the amount of
contact with their fathers, after divorce."
• "Feelings of anger towards their former spouses hindered
effective involvement on the part of fathers; angry mothers would
sometimes sabotage father's efforts to visit their children
• "Mothers may prevent visits to retaliate against fathers for
problems in their marital or post-marital relationship."
• 77% of non-custodial fathers are NOT able to "visit" their
children, as ordered by the court, as a result of "visitation
interference" perpetuated by the custodial parent. In other words,
non-compliance with court ordered visitation is three times the
problem of non-compliance with court ordered child support and
impacts the children of divorce even more. (9)
Many fathers have reported that presents, phone calls letters and
greeting cards have not been given to their children. Word has
gotten back to some of them as their children have gotten older that
their children were told that "daddy does not love you" Some have
taught their children to falsely accuse their fathers of abuse such
as former Playboy playmate Bridget Marks when she convinced her four-
year-old twin girls to lie about their father during their custody
case to say their father was sexually abusing them. (11)
I have often encouraged the men and women in Shattered Men to go to
church on Mother's Day and on Father's day to listen and take notes
on the messages they hear on each of these day. Many have confirmed
my suspicions and what I have often heard myself. On Mother's day,
women are most often praised and some could get the idea that
mothers all but walk on water. On Father's Day, men are told that
all of the evils of society rest solely upon their shoulders. The
pastor of a large church in Dallas Texas told the men that if they
were living away from home to go back home where they belonged. He
seemed a bit offended when I wrote to him to inform him that he
would need to expand his prison ministry because many of these men
would then be in jail for violation of restraining orders which were
taken out regardless of anything they did wrong. (12) (13)
And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the
heart of the children to their fathers.
The first commandment that God gave us that had a promise is:
Honour thy father and mother; which is the first commandment with
promise; (That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long
on the earth)
Please notice that this does not tell us to honor them only if they
were good parents. Yes I know there are many very abusive parents.
We have worked with hundreds of men and women who have experienced
abuse by one or both parents. Yes it can be very difficult to do but
it is possible. Just as in forgiving an abuser benefits us, this
too will benefit us when we do it.
I have seen much evidence in recent years that God is turning the
hearts of fathers toward their children. One example is a man who
has spent $400,000 dollars to keep a relationship with his daughter
after she was kidnapped and moved to the U.S. only to have it
blocked by the U.S. State Department. (14) I have been contacted
by many who want a relationship with their children but have had it
blocked. At the same time, many children are eager to find their
dads that they have not known. Many are seeking the truth as to why
their father was not a part of their lives. I do believe strongly
there is a very real deeply hidden agenda as to why fathers have
been pushed out of their children's lives. (15) and I have tried to
help people understand how it may feel to lose a child (16) but I
would like to remind us all of another father that lost a child.
His child was lost so that we may gain a Father.
Many have said we are all God's children but this is not true.
Although we have all been created by God, Jesus informed us that
satan is the father of many people. God does want to adopt us into
His family so that we can be His children. That is why Jesus came
over 2,000 years ago so that we could be redeemed, so that our
hearts would be turned to THE Father and His heart would be turned
to us. You see, God can not look upon sin. It is only when we have
been redeemed that God can look upon us. The means that this is
done is so simple that most of us make it hard.
Many people know ABOUT God but to have a relationship with Him, we
have to KNOW Him. What is the difference?
Knowing about God can include us being aware of all the facts
concerning Him. Many people think that knowing that Jesus Christ
died for our sin is all that is needed for salvation. It is NOT! In
order to have salvation that is to have eternal life there are a few
basic steps we need to follow. This is so important I want to go
1: We need to realize we have sinned. Romans 3:23 For all have
sinned and come short of the Glory of God This means we have failed
to met the goal of being perfect in order to enter heaven. Few of us
would question this.
2: The penalty for the sin that we are guilty of is death. Romans
6:23 tells us The wages of sin is death. (Death is separation. When
our body dies, our soul is separated from our body. Eternal death is
when we die without doing what is being explained here and then our
spirit is separated from God for eternity.
Since the only price we can pay for our own sin is to be separated
from God forever, it stands to reason that there is no way we can
pay for our sin ourselves. We thus come to the 2nd part of Romans
6:23: but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ the
3: 2nd Corinthians 5:21 informs us: For he hath made him, who knew
no sin, to be sin for us, that we might be made the righteousness of
God in him. Jesus Christ, God's only Son became sin for us so that
we can be freed from the penalty of sin. What then do we need to do?
4: For GOD so loved the world that HE gave His only begotten Son
that whosoever (read YOUR name here) believeth in Him should not
perish but have everlasting life. Please note the ONLY condition
given is that we believe in Jesus Christ for full payment for our
Now if we only learn these facts, even though we may understand that
they are true and believe them. that is only knowing ABOUT GOD. How
do we KNOW HIM then? It is APPLYING that payment to our account.
This would be like having a check to pay a bill and putting the
check on a desk. The bill does not get paid because the check was
never APPLIED to your account. Once we know and believe the facts
pointed out above, the next step is to TALK to God much as you and I
would and admit that we have fallen short of what He wants.
We recognize that we deserve to be separated from a Holy God. We
then tell Him that we know that He has provided a payment for all
our sin and this payment was Jesus Christ when He died on a cross.
It is at this time we ask God to APPLY THIS PAYMENT TO OUR ACCOUNT.
We ask God to credit as PAYMENT IN FULL for all our sin the price
Jesus paid for us. It is this step that gives us eternal life. If we
do all but this step, we know about God.
When we do this step, we will KNOW God and we will have eternal
life. Following is a model of a prayer to trust Christ.
Lord God, I now realize I am a sinner. I realize I have fallen
short of the goal You have set forth for eternal life and I now
repent of this sin. I also understand that according to Your Word,
the Bible, that Your Son, Jesus Christ as paid the debt for me and I
am now asking You to credit the payment Jesus made on the cross to
my sin. Lord God I also now understand that You have now given me
eternal life and I thank You for that fact. Amen.
I do want to wish each father reading this that not only would
Father's day be special to them, but each and everyday your heart
will be turned toward your children, and their heart toward you!
(11) http://tinyurl.com/3nkb4n (12) http://tinyurl.com/4nt5g7
Pastor Ken Deemer
Director Shattered Men
P.O. BOX 166
MARION INDIANA 46952-0166
JUNE is Domestic Violence Against Men Awareness Month
Web site: http://www.shatterdmen.com
Interactive Group: http://health.groups.yahoo.com/group/Shatteredmen/
(please click above to vote for this site)
JUNE is Domestic Violence Against Men Awareness Month