I AM MY FATHER'S CHILD
A QUEST FOR IDENTITY
By Gloria Phifer
Identity…"The state of being identified. The condition or character as to who a person is." (Dictionary.)
I never knew my real father. He and my mother were divorced when I was three. I didn't know that he even existed until I was ten. My mother told me. I had always thought my step father, Slim, was my dad.
My mother said he lived in
. My Aunt Ruby told me he had loved my mom. My Uncle Don (who had been his friend) told me he was a good guy…didn't drink and was a good business man. He owned a business in California . Other then that…he was a mystery. He had been in the 2nd World War when I was born. He was in the Army Air Force. My mother also told me he didn't care anything about me or he wouldn't have given up custody of me…OUCH! California
I day dreamed about finding him. When I was older I would go to
and search for him. That dream was never realized. When I was 19 years old (right before I married) my grandmother sent a letter…my father, age 41, had died of a massive heart attack. California
When I was in my 40"s my mother told me how I could find his daughter, Linda Lee. She was 4 years older than me. When I contacted her the first words were, "Gloria, I've been looking for you for 21 years." My mother had written her mother a letter asking if Linda and I could meet. Linda's step father said, "No." When Linda got married and left home she began searching for me. My family was a rolling stone that never gathered moss. We were always on the move.
I flew to
, where Linda was, and we tried to put our information together about this man who had fathered us. Linda was on the same quest that I was on. Linda had more pictures then I did and she had known our grandfather. I did learn more about the family. For instance, my father's grandparents, were traveling, Baptist Evangelists. New Mexico
My dad's mother was very musical; she played the guitar and sang. She sang in church and on the radio.
After this visit, I received letters from my father's first cousin and she sent me pictures of the family. She told me my dad had very fair skin (did not like to be out in the sun…and neither do I) He had blue eyes.
So, I was gathering information. But who was this man? My mother said I looked like him and was a lot like him. Who was he???
Our son Timothy moved to
through his job. I visited him there and he took me to California . We found my father's grave…he was buried in a military cemetery. San Diego
On another visit to
, my husband and I spent an evening with my father's nephew. (We had been in contact through mail.) His mother was my father's sister. I found out my grandmother and Aunt had both died of heart attacks. Another sister had died of cancer. There was really no one else to contact. As we visited that evening with my cousin…I realized he had not spent much time with my father. I found out about his mother, my aunt, but not my father. California
When we returned to the motel my husband went to the room. I decided to go to the swimming pool. There was no one there but me. I felt this emptiness…the void of not knowing my father. I was disappointed.
As I began to pray the word "identity" kept surfacing in my mind. Finally, I listened.
I heard the gentle voice of the Lord speak to my heart…"your identity is in Me!"
I said, "Yes Lord, my identity is in You."
The Lord began a wonderful work in my life. He began teaching me who I am in Him…In Christ. I have a Father. A Father Who will never leave me or forsake me.
My earthly father's DNA is in me. Christ's DNA flows through me.
I was not a child that was planned or wanted. The Lord showed me I was born because He wanted me. He has a destiny for my life. He planned me from the beginning. My Heavenly Father…the One Who gave me life.
It is interesting; from that time forward I have never felt the need to search for any more information on my earthly dad. I have received some from an unexpected source. But, even then I was at peace. The Lord had settled it in my heart.
I have a Father Who wanted me…is always there for me…meets all my needs and loves me with an everlasting love.
Jeremiah 1:5 "He has known us from the womb and has called us by name." Ps 139:13-18 He has covered us in our mother's womb. He saw us being formed before we were born.
I am my Father's child.