I was Samuel. I am Winston.
My story is as common as a pine tree in the countryside of Georgia. The doesn’t know how to grow up into a man so he makes a mess of his life in a reckless pursuit of his heart, his masculinity and his identity. I have left a lot of wreckage because of unmet expectations of love, appreciation and being spoken of as a man with a purpose.
My soul felt splintered and broken, much like the limb you see in the picture. Our community had a category 1 hurricane rip through it a couple of days ago but this poor old oak tree lost a part of itself. I lived for a good part of my early years thinking I would be splintered and broken for the rest of my life. I couldn’t find myself. I needed a blessing; I needed fathering. I needed identity.
I was caught in the middle of an ugly divorce and became the middle child in both families. My existence was like a piece of fabric right in the middle of a tug of war rope. I knew I was loved but I felt forgotten and voiceless.
I felt like I was a “prize” for the winner and not prized as a son.
My father was present but ill-equipped to handle all that was being thrown at him. I don’t blame him. You cannot be angry at a soldier for not running if he is shot in the leg so harboring anger doesn’t seem just. After all, a man cannot give to others what he hasn’t first received for himself. I have a Father who can do what my earthly father could not. This is a glorious promise of the gospel.
Galatians 4:3-7 NLT
“We were like children; we were slaves to the basic spiritual principles of this world.
But when the right time came, God sent his Son, born of a woman, subject to the law. God sent him to buy freedom for us who were slaves to the law, so that he could adopt us as his very own children. And because we are his children, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, prompting us to call out, “Abba, Father.”
Now you are no longer a slave but God’s own child.
And since you are his child, God has made you his heir.”
I have been brought from the feeling of fatherless to receiving sonship into the family of God.
Even so, this still rears itself in ugly ways. I have a ferocious inner drive to control things. This has been shaped by my inability to be blessed as a boy. Control sprouted up out of a dry and barren land of wounding. My controlling nature has created distance between everyone I love. I own my failures, but I am still effected by them.
In my opinion, the greatness of Churchill was developed by his father wound. Churchill developed a very high drive to make his father happy with him or at the very least, notice him. Whether it was the pathway through military academy, striving for political prominence, or his hunger for war, Churchill did not want to be irrelevant so he overachieved to be known. He, too, needed a Father. Churchill’s great grandson, Jonathon Sandys, co authored a book, God & Churchill, detailing Winston Churchill’s faith and there is evidence that he learned of the Father’s love. Churchill believed that his “divine destiny” was to bring victory for the Christian civilization, and maybe, his father wound fueled his purpose and our victory in WWII? This is something that may give evidence of the Divine. My wound and Divine healing are one of the reasons why I inspire men to become their best self! God has a way of using what was once broken to help other people who have been broken. Ah, redemption.
The issues of the heart are complicated and deeply influential. I have tried to give a brief synopsis of my own life and a mere snapshot of Churchill’s. He is one of the most influential men in modern human history and to confine his life and influence in a short blog would be irresponsible and irreverent. He fulfilled his purpose. I am pursuing my purpose everyday. One question remains.
We affirm a manhood that honors God
and helps one another to become their best self.
Apart from God, it is impossible.
God & Churchill: How the Great Leader’s Sense of Divine Destiny Changed His Troubled World and Offers Hope for Ours by Jonathon Sandys and Wallace Henley.