One year ago today, I began the journey to find my biological father. For years, I thought he had passed away. But on Father’s Day last year, my children bought me a DNA test and the results pointed to another man – and he was still alive.
It’s a curious thing, knowing you have “another father” out there somewhere. Being adopted into a wonderful home, I never lacked for a mother and father. James and Betty Robison are my God-appointed parents and my entire family carries the last name with a sense of honor and proper pride. At the same time, I couldn’t deny the DNA. I wanted to know.
The security my parents gave me actually helped in my search for my biological parents. When I learned that the man I thought was my biological father was not my biological father and that he was still alive, I told my wife, “He may slam the door in my face, but I’m going to reach out to him.”
It took a few months of obsessive research and some help from a newfound cousin well-versed in DNA and genealogy, but we narrowed it down to a couple of possibilities. One was in Texas. I called and asked to visit, neither of us knowing exactly how we were related. I knocked on his door and he graciously invited me into his home. I laid out what I knew of my story and a couple of days later he called and said, “I think I’m the one you’re looking for.”
He took a DNA test and it confirmed our relationship. Since then, I’ve gotten to know Joe. He has been gracious and open. He wants to know me. I am grateful for his kindness and pray I can be a blessing to him.
Another funny thing happened along the way. The aspect of the DNA test that first tipped me off that things were not as they seemed was my ethnic background. I’m nearly 70 percent Irish. That didn’t line up with the extensive ancestry research I’d done on both my biological mother (whom I’ve known for many years) and the man I previously thought was my biological father. They’re not that Irish. But Joe – he’s 100 percent!
That has led to another slight obsession of mine: Ireland. In fact, at the moment this devotional is being emailed and posted online, I am on my way from London to Dublin. My Irish awakening made me want to know more, to explore the land of my ancestors, and to learn about their culture. So I’m going to counties Clare, Cavan, Donegal, and Antrim. I have a sense that this is a part of who I am.
There is a parallel between my journey and the journey all Christians are on. When we are born again in Jesus Christ, we become sons and daughters of God. When the Holy Spirit resides in us, we get God’s DNA. It cannot be denied. We have a Father who is gracious, open, and wants to know us. When we reach out, He welcomes us into His presence.
This realization also sparks a heaven awakening. We are a part of the kingdom of heaven, which doesn’t require hours of travel – it’s here. It transcends and trumps all earthly cultures, uniting all believers as one. We can explore it, experience it, and learn more.
So on this Father’s Day, no matter who your earthly father may be, I ask these simple questions: Do you know your Heavenly Father? Do you understand how much He wants to have a close and ongoing relationship with you? And do you realize that you are already a citizen of heaven, right now on this earth?
I pray that you will come into a greater realization of your spiritual DNA. Unlike my Irishness, it’s not just a part of who we are, it’s everything we are. So knock on His door. I know He will invite you in.
Happy Father’s Day to all fathers – and both of mine!