When Your Father Is Not a Christian

What I mourn most of all, of course, and what all Christian children who have parents who do not share their faith must wrestle with, is the fact that he has not accepted what God has accomplished in Jesus Christ. Even at the best times of my life, the times when I was happiest, there was always this one thing: that my father is not saved. What will be his eternal destiny? If I take the traditional view, then I must imagine my father separated from us in eternity, and separated from God. I can barely stand to think of it.

I hope and I pray that God has a plan for him, and someday he will receive Christ. He has never believed that he needed Christ, because his life has always been simple and fine. He has never longed for the God I love, never felt the absence of what fills me, never felt the need for the strength that sustains me. I hope he will someday.

I will always be eternally grateful that God has given me a father who is generous and supportive and good. Yet I am deeply afraid -- always deeply afraid -- that we will not share eternity together. With all my heart, I long for the day when he will tell me that he has given his life to Christ, and on that day we will weep and pray and sing together. Until then, all I can do, the only way I can handle my fear, is to set my hope in a God whose grace is extravagant and overflowing and always reaches further than we expect.

Jane Tou is an attorney who was raised in an Asian-American household in the South.

4/27/2010 4:00:00 AM