Let me begin by saying that counterfeits for authentic fathering abound.
“You have an unlimited number of teachers, but you do not have many fathers” (1 Corinthians 4:15).
Several forms of leadership, relabeled with the buzzword, now claim to be fathering when they are Pharaoh. Several other forms of teaching are claiming to father when they are part of the “you have ten thousand teachers.” They are not part of the “not many fathers” part of Paul’s discussion with the Corinthians that guides are the present discussion of fathering.
I bless the coaching leaders. They are teachers, not fathers. If they father, they cease to coach, or they do both for some people they father and also teach. Do not buy into the idea that a mentor or a coach is a father. Paul could not be more clear about that.
Fathering leadership is not all the same, and many people jump to conclusions that lead to false expectations. Of course, many “fathering” leaders are not fathering at all. They are Pharoah. As well, most start out fathering at some level but end up Pharoah at another level, and the Pharoah side overcomes the fathering side.
Many fathering relationships start one way and end up another.
- Seldom do people accept a Pharoah leader. They receive a fathering leader who becomes a Pharoah leader once the relational dynamics kick in.
- Using the word “fathering” as a buzzword for recruiting a downline has become the modus operandi for most apostolic wannabe’s. The “fathering” aspect they deploy answers to the expectations of people they wish to recruit. They cannot deliver fathering, so they end up providing Pharoah leadership for maintaining the downline.
- Using “fathering” as a label for “launching” and “sending” and “family” helps to recruit because people have a warped idea of fathering. Since fathering isn’t about these things, the relationships do south.
- Most networks depend upon a continuous parade of new recruits because they fathering is Pharoah and those that find out they are not going to become famous and rich on the coattails of the “Father” quit.
- The authentic is not about money, but the authentic is about money. Here’s the key to this conundrum: a Pharoah wants money for himself; a father receives money for an assignment or inheritance. (Fathers expand an estate.
- The authentic aligns assignments, not personalities, but the relational dynamics are personal. Here’s the key to the conundrum: a Pharoah demands personality-centric characterizations that diminish those being fathered; a father requires children mature in personal purpose to the inheritance expands. (Fathers expand the estate.)
- The Pharoah will create perceptions of importance akin to the court of a king by glances of favor and name drops. The authentic father will disappoint consumers and entitled children but mature champions toward personal ultimates of character and kingdom stature. The difference is night and day to all involved. (Fathers expand the inheritance through inheritors.)
- The Pharoah will make one son a successor to dominate the estate, but a father will develop a team of inheritors that expand the estate. The authentic father and his genuine inheritors work the assignment together at the same time so that the assignment expands. His inheritors so honor the genuine father’s role that submission to the blueprints is not an issue. Pharaohs will empty participants of ministry to feed a personality cult; fathers will expand the estate by producing a team of individually unique inheritors.
Get Out, Get In
Get into authentic fathering. Get out of the fraudulent multi-level dead ends. Since “fathering” is the buzzword, the marketing reach has extended far and wide. Those operating a client-based approach use it and a few phrases and slogans to sell themselves. They focus on discontentments and false expectations.
Advertising creates perceptions: a naked female thigh of a thin model driving a particular car with men stopping whatever they are doing to look up at her and the automobile suggests that all you need to do to become attractive is buy that car. The fact that you are 200 pounds overweight and have a black beard and your nose is upside down has nothing to do with the perception. Buy that car.
Marketing “fathering” by promising immature, delusional wannabe’s microphones, platforms, book signing deals, and television interviews works like a charm. It is a charm. The fact that they have nothing to say into a microphone, faint on the platform, cannot write a book, or look like a mute cave slug on TV has nothing to do with the perception. “I will ordain you as an apostle or prophet.” That is the perception buy-in.
Once you buy in the perception, the back side close comes through: “Now, you need to come in at the $3,000/month level to get that kind of mentoring and attention from Pharaoh.”
Money and Fathering
Fathering is kingdom. Pharaoh is humanism. Both have lots of money flowing through, into, and around. That is reality. If you are looking for a free ride in anything worthwhile, go back to your starting point and reset your brain, left and right sides.
Clay Nash says, “Do not give to a need. Give to a vision.” In fathering and kingdom terms, this means a fathering leader has blueprints to complete a kingdom assignment, and you have an assignment, once completed, that will achieve some aspects of his assignment. (www.ClayNash.org)
No father in the kingdom operates without an assignment from the fathering King who represents the Father. (All fathering is “representative fathering.”) Your assignment to a father, to work with a fathering leader, means the King’s assignment for your life meshes with the assignment of the fathering leader. You will be working together on the same kingdom estate.
If you say, “What’s in this for me?” as most moderns do, you have a Judas spirit. You are thinking Pharaoh leadership. This perverted presupposition is the current assumption of fathering that drive people to father bashing.
If you ask, “Does this relational dynamic prepare and position me to work the rest of my life on this estate, reach my ultimate, finish my assignment, and prepare inheritors to expand my portion of the estate?” you are thinking “kingdom fathering.”
Money goes up in fathering because the money goes to the assignment. Part of the money positions the father to operate from a position of financial strength. Spiritual fathering is about a shared assignment. No one ever does ministry without it costing them personal money, and fathering means you give money to the task.
(We are talking about ministry money, not the father’s personal wealth. You are always happy when someone prospers personally, and having a wealthy father has nothing to do with your fathering relationship. You are going to have a challenge with a father who has personal financial problems because that weakness will inevitably mix with his ministry money. So, pray your father gets rich.)
It is evident that your heart and your money reach the same point of purpose: “Where your treasure is there your heart will be also.” If you don’t have the heart to give where you are fathered, you are not after spiritual fathering at all. You are seeking a handout you do not deserve. (You are an entitled, spoiled, irreverent, and dishonoring brat. And, I didn’t stutter when I wrote that. You are Judas already betraying your fathering leader.)
More Than One
Paul says, “You have an unlimited number of teachers (pointing out what is right and wrong, appropriate and inappropriate), but you do not have many fathers.”
You can have more than one spiritual father. How? Back to the basic: fathering is tied to an assignment, so you have as many fathers as you have assignments. If you have assignments that require three or four fathering leaders, you are working on three or four inheritance-based estates in which you have kingdom assignments. That is rare but possible.
I make the point only for the exceptions. Most people do not have more than two fathering leaders. I also make the point to expand on the fathering definitions.
- Some fathers have kingdom-wide in influence. Some fathers are international. Some fathers are national. Some fathers are regional. Some fathers are personal.
- If you have an assignment that is international, you will have a fathering leader who functions at the international level for that aspect of your kingdom assignment. That will not preclude you having a fathering influence on a personal, regional, or national level as well, without conflict or comparison.
- You will have fathering changes because fathering leaders die, lose their places in the kingdom by personal disqualification, and you complete assignments along the way. The completion of assignments at the international, national, and regional levels are not the same as a personal fathering leader who you walk with for personal ultimates. The personal fathering leaders in your life are the most valuable and costly, vital and confrontational, victorious and constructive. Since personal character or personal leadership measures all leadership, a personal fathering leader will always challenge you at the most intimate levels.
The personal father is the one about which you will be most tested. You will want to dispose of that leader on many occasions but cutting him off will be like an ax to your roots. You are root grafted to personal fathers.
We are in the New Era Reformation. As we enter the 2020’s, the Roaring Twenties, we are being prepared to operate in kingdom culture. Kingdom culture designs and defines our relationships. Among those relationships, designed and defined by the King, fathering – both natural and spiritual – is the most basic.
So, in a very real way, our success in the New Era will be determined by the quality of our fathering leadership dynamics. We need to get this right.