We were like little tots out on a walk with our father, as if God had taken us back to our childhood
A Day With My “Father”
(Story happened Year 2015)
A Day with my “Father”
While attending the International Teams Regional Conference in Jakarta, Indonesia, I was determined to receive valuable insights and was intent on hearing God through the speakers. Little did I know that our heavenly Father had a different agenda for me.
In one of the sessions, my attention was fixed on what the speaker was saying when my wife Elsa gave me a nudge and pointed to another speaker about to take his place on stage. When I shifted my attention to this man, I couldn’t help but well up inside and just started bawling like a little child.
Flashback to Unspeakable Grief
Several years ago, I received news that my father, who was living in the US, had died. It was very devastating. Family members scampered to secure a US visa to pay last respects and attend his wake and burial. To add to the misery of losing my father, however, everyone got a visa — except me!
How I ached to see my father for the last time! To say a proper goodbye. To tell him how much I loved him. To tell him I would miss him so much. It seemed that time stood still. I remained in the Philippines grieving all by myself.
From that day on, I had kept praying for God to fill my deep longing for another encounter, another chance to be with my father. It was a crazy prayer, yes. But here I was, a son earnestly longing for my father’s love.
Look, There’s Dad!
My wife and I still couldn’t get over what we were seeing. We immediately told my sister who was also with us and she, too, started crying. There in front was a man who looked and moved exactly like our father. Deep down, I was so excited to hear him talk and sing. And if he did sing, I hoped he would wave his hands like my dad did. True enough, when he started talking, we immediately knew he was God’s gift to us that day. He even sang like my dad, complete with all his hand gestures. The speaker was Ptr. Robert Tarigan, and he heads International Teams Indonesia. But to us, that day, he was “Dad.”
What a treat!
The Ultimate Treat
As if saying “I’m not done yet!” our heavenly Father arranged a bigger surprise for us. The missionaries in Indonesia were teamed up with other conference delegates to tour the city. Naturally, leaders were to go with fellow leaders. Since Ptr. Robert was the country head; he would be escorting Ptr. Gani Sison, IT Philippines Executive Director. However, by some divine intervention, a mix-up happened, and Ptr. Gani Sison was assigned to someone else.
Guess who was assigned to give us a whole-day tour? Ptr. Robert, of course!
My sister, my wife, and I enjoyed every moment spent with him. We savored every minute, held his hand and hugged him freely (he didn’t seem to mind, although he was not aware of the back story), took tons of pictures and relished our conversations. We were like little tots out on a walk with our father, as if God had taken us back to our childhood years.
Picture me — a brusque-looking, middle-aged, heavily built married man — so giddy with excitement, enjoying tender moments with Ptr. Robert. It must have been a comical sight, but it was an experience I will not trade for anything else.
Thank you, Abba Daddy for satisfying my deep longing to feel my dad’s love again.
“A father of the fatherless… Is God in His holy habitation.” Psalm 68:5
Testimony: Boy Marquez
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