My biological father, Dennis Jerome Taylor, was killed when I was two years old. As a result of his death, I struggled my entire childhood and most of my adult life with trying to fill a void that only a fatherless child can explain. It wasn’t until I became a mature, born again Christian, that I understood the void that I was trying to fill. You see…there is something about a father’s love that gives us security, and without it, you can feel lost or like you are walking in this world trying to figure everything out for yourself. My mother did the best that she knew how to love and provide for me, but even if she gave me every ounce of energy and attention that she had, it still wouldn’t have been enough to
fill the void. It was a void that only God could fill.
Throughout my childhood, I had a real desire to have my own family, i.e. one that I created. Although it isn’t the norm for guys to have thoughts of creating a family at such a young age, my desire to have my own family was birthed out of the dysfunction that I grew up in. I also believe it was my way of addressing the void. I always knew that I was going to be a caring and loving husband to my future wife, and that I would be an amazing father to my future children. My fatherlessness, coupled with my strong desire to have a father in the natural impacted my life more than I could even understand at the time. Due to my father’s untimely death, I always felt like I was lacking something. That lack birthed my desire to want more for myself and my future family. It also birthed my desire to excel academically and dream of a life where I could positively affect the lives of others.
When I was 17, I had a conversation with God and I poured my heart out. I begged for understanding of why I had to be the child without a father. For those 17 long years, I struggled with my identity because I didn’t know whose I was. I didn’t know my father and due to the cards that I was dealt, I wouldn’t have the opportunity to get to know him. My life changed during that prayer. God spoke so clearly and said, “I am your father and I will provide for all of your needs. You are going to preach for me.” In that moment, my identity became clear. Well…somewhat clear. I was God’s child, and although He wasn’t here in the natural, I knew that I could trust in His promises.
After that, I went through many years of fighting God’s call on my life and struggling with not having a natural father. The closer I got to God, the more He filled that void. The more I read His word, the better I understood who I was and the call that was on my life. As a young Christian, I didn’t quite understand the discipline and integrity required to serve my father’s kingdom. I also didn’t understand why God just didn’t remove my desire to “turn up”. Now, as a mature man of God, I understand that it was all part of my process. My issues with not having a father have subsided and they made the recent birth of my daughter, Zara Rose Taylor, even more amazing.
Since September 28, 2015, the day that I became a father, God has been showing me that His love for me, as my father, is even greater than the unconditional, unwavering, unfailing love that I have for my daughter. From the moment Zara Rose was born, I went through some immediate emotional and spiritual changes that I had no idea were coming. It was like my heart expanded and my capacity to love grew instantaneously.
When she was born, besides being emotional and in awe of the miracle of the childbirth, my initial thoughts were:
- Wow, she’s beautiful! I really LOVE my daughter.
- It’s my job to be her covering and to protect her.
- I want her to know that I’ll always be here for her and that she can depend on me.
- Wow, she’s really beautiful.
- This is MY daughter. Wow!!!
About two weeks after Princess Zara was born, I was thinking about everything that I want to teach her throughout her life, and God said, “You see how much thought and care you are putting into your daughter, I put even more thought and planning into creating your life. How much you love your daughter…I love you even more than that.” That blew my mind to even think about, let alone process a love greater than the love I have for my wife and daughter.
As our father, God’s AGAPE love for us, which is the highest form of love, is really hard for us to fathom. But after seeing my child being birthed into this world, I’ve developed a better understanding of God’s never-ending love for us. At all times, God has plans for us to prosper. God’s desire for us to have hope and a future were established prior to us being formed in our mother’s womb (Jeremiah 29:11; Jeremiah 1:5). I’m grateful that I’ve been able to hear from God in a new way. Since the birth of my daughter, I have continued to experience an amazing love that only a father knows.