DTC Stories

Defending the Cause: Oaks of Righteousness

“My brothers, what an opportunity we have been given! I want to thank you all for the decision to serve the fatherless!” Mentor Father Dean Varney

Isaiah 61 tells us that in the year of our Lord’s favor He will visit the troubled bringing joy from tears and beauty from ashes. He will take the weak and make them oaks of righteousness. Every time a Mentor Father steps boldly into the life of a fatherless boy, that boy experiences a part of the Lord’s favor; God willing that boy will grow into an oak of righteousness.

Photo of Mentor Father Dean Varney and Field Buddy Keeyion
Mentor Father Dean Varney and Field Buddy Keeyion

I was reminded of this passage while speaking with Mentor Father Dean Varney at First Baptist Church in La Grande Oregon when he commented that Jesus had used the ashes of his being raised fatherless to bring beauty into the life of his first Field Buddy Keeyion.

“When I was six years old, my father was an abusive alcoholic who focused his abuse primarily at my mother. Before my seventh birthday my father had abandoned my brother and me. Fortunately, my grandfather stepped in and he became my ‘hero.’ He was my ‘mentor father’ whose leadership set the tone for how I lived in word, in conduct and in deed. I had experienced both the worst and the best that a man could offer a young boy. It would continue to shape my decisions for the rest of my life. When I first learned about the Fathers in the Field ministry, I knew that I could not walk away from it. I told my wife that ‘l have to do this!’ She just smiled and said, ‘I know.’ Later, I would tell my first Field Buddy, Keeyion, that without the father abandonment of my youth, I was not sure that I would have chosen so empathetically to mentor a fatherless boy. It was an example of how our Lord Jesus makes ‘beauty from ashes.’ How God makes something positive from something so destructively negative. Keeyion looked at me and said, ‘I am sorry that you went through that, but am glad you are my mentor!’ Shortly after the conclusion of my commitment to Keeyion I was given the opportunity to mentor Rylan, to invest into the life of another fatherless boy. God is good! What a blessing to be the instrument He uses to help heal these boys.”

Photo of Mentor Father Dean Varney and Field Buddy Rylan
Mentor Father Dean Varney and Field Buddy Rylan

Dean is just one of hundreds of men across the country who have obeyed the commands of the Lord to imitate Him in being a “father to the fatherless” (Psalm 68:5). I thank God every day for these men who are Oaks of Righteousness, and fervently pray that the rest of God’s mighty men would wake up and join them.

Together we can help the Lord usher in the day of His favor and bring healing to the lives of these precious boys. Contact me today.

Standing in the Gap,
John Smithbaker
Founding Servant
p: 1-844-472-4241
e: info@fathersinthefield.com