From Father’s Delight-Nashville 2014
My daughter & I had to leave a school camping trip to come. she said if we had to miss the whole camping trip next year, she wanted to in order to be at the father’s delight. she said she hopes they let 13 year olds come when she’s 13…in 3 more years! thanks for a life time experience.
Just having time to make some great memories with my daughter! Thanks to all of you!
My daughter loves it and we love hanging out. I told her we might go to every other year, but she put her foot down and said, “Dad, I can’t do this for too long so we need to come every year!” Thanks for continuing to do this for us.
Just seeing her smile again was everything to me. She was sad from moving away from her friends and she got to make new friends at the event as a well as just let go and have fun.
My daughter loved dancing with me. We still talk about it.
I can tell that my daughter so loves this day. She has never been into princesses or dressing up, but she absolutely loves the adventure time and the affirmation she receives. Thank you for putting this event together – it creates lasting memories.
It was a “first step” toward growing closer as dad-daughter, which was important. As she gets older, I envision different experiences. Excited!
Amazing event and I will certainly tell all my friends with daughters. Overall and amazing opportunity for Dads to engage with their daughters! Thank you for the opportunity!
From Father’s Heart Weekend-Nashville 2014
I’ve been waiting for several years to bring my first born son, Riley. I believe this shared experience will continue to sow the seeds of Father/Son relational restoration that the enemy has stolen from my family for generations before me. It was incredible to see my son come to life in ways he previously never has! So so awesome!
My son and I are close, and I would have said so before the weekend. However, I am so easily distracted. I am self-employed and work from a shop at my house. So not only do I have all the normal distractions like things to do, and to fix, people to call, emails to answer, but my job and all the things that entails are always within eyesight of my house. He and I frequently walk outside and talk, and very often I will say, “hey, walk with me to the shop.” He likes the shop, the tools and the things I do, and I reassure myself with that. But in truth, it is still something that takes me away from him – just him. We are often in each other’s presence, and because of that I think we are spending time together. But being really with him this weekend was so stark a contrast that I immediately saw the difference between what I do and what I should do. I saw the difference between talking to him and really listening to him. I saw that being with him meant not just showing him something or watching him, but jumping in and being right there beside him. One day he will tell stories of us and he will tell of the times where he did and I watched, of times where I did and he watched, but he will also – thanks to you guys – tell of the times when we both did something. Together. That was more than expected, and yet it was the greatest thing I could have asked for.
My son and I started on an intentional journey together at a young age, with the book Raising a Modern Day Knight as our guide. The primary takeaway from that for me has been the importance of intentional relationship and how that helps develop our boys into the men God wants them to be. This weekend was a powerful step in that process for us–and we intend to repeat.
The FH weekend was great for our family in too many ways to count. In the days since the event, my son has been a different kid, confident that he is cherished, chosen, and a beloved son.
Eamonn and I both appreciated the generosity and patience of Rob and Justin. He also seemed more moved by the music this year–is there a particular church that is most attended by the organizers?
Joey continues to feel so close to me (and I to him) because of and through this weekend. My question to him “What do you like most about FHW? Joey – “Spending time with you” God also inspires me to be better through other men.
This was an amazing weekend. The most impactful and intentional time I have ever had with my son. I feel like we connected in a way that we had not connected before and that connection has changed our relationship in a great way since then.
My son had me riding around in the rain without our shirts on for a while and he loved it.
From Father’s Delight-Nashville 2013
It was the most memorable, most impactful day I have had with my daughter. The adventure and trust building activities were critical to unplug, be in the moment and give her what she is longing for…my full and heart felt delight. She completely felt it! She also has continue to read her letter and affirmations which is a keep sake for life. Thank you for the amazing experience!
This was my daughter and I’s second year–this experience is something very special that I believe will have a lasting impact on her life and mine!!
It was wonderful to be able to connect and focus only on my daughter. She overcame intense fear on the Alpine Tower (making it to the top with her own will) and hit a bullseye (Cyclops eye) at the archery range. She was excited about the archery because she was able to accomplish something she struggled with figuring out in the past.
From Father’s Heart Weekend-Nashville 2013
Just another incredible weekend! Awesome to share it with other fathers and sons we interact with on a weekly basis. Seeing Owen climb the zip line without hesitation was priceless!- Peder J.
I love refocusing on being a Dad during the weekend—it really helps me slow down and enjoy my son.- Britt P.
It was awesome watching Preston climb the Pamper Pole—twice! I was feeling tired and was simply going to watch, but his courage to tackle the pole twice inspired me to climb the wall and not quit until I reached the top.!- Chris S.
When we were wrapping things up Saturday night after the affirmation, I noticed my son crying. I thought he was freaked out by noise-when I asked him what was wrong-he said “I’m so happy.” This is a snapshot of how great this experience was for us.- Jason O.
I loved watching my son overcome his fear of heights and just playing with him!- Steve S.
I loved watching my son overcome his fears and learning how hard of a worker he is—Having three boys makes it hard to always see each one individually-this weekend gave me that insight!- Jacob C.
I learned to take instruction from my son! His ideas got us through the treacherous river on our trolleys-the most meaningful time for me was the Affirmation Ceremony!- Chad G.
The Father’s Heart Weekend has been an amazing time! The time I have spent with my son and other men has really opened my heart and soul as a man. The ability to spend this time with Braden has opened my heart and mind and given me the desire to be a better father and leader for my family.This weekend will be etched in my heart forever. - Dale D.
My son is absolutely terrified of heights-I did not believe that he would be able to scale the pole for the zip line but he conquered it! My most meaningful experience is the weekend as a whole, something that Nathan and I really needed–to be able to connect.- Paul N.
My son honoring me with his words was overwhelming and a blessing!- Andy C.
This weekend experience gave me an opportunity to learn how I need to stop projecting my forgone conclusions on my son and simply let him enjoy his childhood passions.- Bobby W.
I loved spending quality and focused time with my son….and I learned to fish!!- Doug S.
From Father’s Delight-Nashville 2012
The closing ceremony at the camp was the most meaningful experience for me. I hope and pray that this made an impression on my daughter. I saved my note card in addition to the letter I wrote to her. These will both be tucked / glued into her journal. Maybe this journal activity will lead her to continue to journal throughout her life. I think it is a good activity. Getting lost so many times (I got lost for two hours after leaving the dinner/dance) was my own trust building exercise with Father God. My daughter slept peacefully in the backseat while I imagined ducking gunfire in some shady parts of Nashville. It lead to some soul searching of my own about my levels of anxiety and trust in God and how everything really ultimately has worked out in my life. Please pray for me if you feel like it.
The most meaningful experience was ironically found in the unexpected places- archery range and in the trust building…I saw sides of my daughter that really blossomed.
It was awesome and amazing to get to spend the entire day with my daughter and give her all of my attention.
Honestly, it was all very meaningful – we even had fun on the drive to and from. Seeing what a great time my daughter had at the dinner and dance may have been the most meaningful.
The most meaningful times were the affirmation ceremony, though the ball was a blast too! Oh and the after effect: after we got home and the next day, I re-read the card my daughter wrote for me! Such a great connection with my daughter!
From Father’s Heart Weekend 2012
For a divorced dad that gets limited time with my son (due to location), this was a home run! A true wink from God. Don’t let anything stand in the way. Make it to this event. I promise it will change your life in a real way.- Zachary A.
My son “got it” when we sang over him. I saw him cry and receive my love. The most meaningful experience for me on the weekend was the special time of worship with my son.- Eric N.
I liked the integration of the Lion King and the discussion about protecting our boys heart from the enemy. Blessed time with my son–this continues to be our favorite weekend of the year!- Richard H.
I was able to share time and feelings of joy with my son that I normally find difficult to share during our normal routine. The affirmation ceremony was really meaningful for the both of us.- Davis L.
Great weekend! I will definitely be back with my son Noah next year. Watching Noah conquer his fears on the zip line was amazing!- Clay S.
Can we make this a four day weekend? My son Jud really is beginning to understand my love for him! Seeing my son look me in the eye as I honor him was priceless. This weekend gives me the opportunity to show my love for him and for him to know that I love him unconditionally.- Barry R.
My son Albie turned to me as we were riding bikes and said “Why can’t every weekend be like this one?” This is an awesome experience and I thank all of you at AbbasWay. It was amazing to watch my son’s typical anxieties disappear because he felt so comfortable and safe throughout the weekend.- Albie V.
I feel closer to God and His love for me. I see better how He loves..me. I also have a lot of joy watching my son “conquer his fears as he told me to “Do the Blob!” Thank you for the safe environment you created allowing my son to stretch his wings and learn to fly.- David S.
This was a great time to spend with my son without any distractions like work and the internet. I really tried to make sure my son knows how much I love him. Thanks!- Tim W.
Having attended two other AbbasWay weekends with my older son, I was thrilled to share this with my second son William. Affirming my love for him was a heart warming experience and much needed for my son.- Joe C.
My son loved the weekend–everything–he can’t pick a favorite. I lost my father when I was twenty-one and took him for granted–I don’t desire to pass that along to my son.- Steve G.
After hurting my knee my son took care of me…this is a side of him that I have never seen…He just knew what to do and it made me so proud.- Paul N.
It was a blessing to just savor the weekend with my son Sammy. Every event was blessed by the Lord. Thank you for your faithfulness in serving fathers and sons.- Dave J.
I love the ceremonies and the time to unplug and simply spend one on one time with my son.
My son is quiet, shy and reserved, yet I saw his heart as I understood mine better. I want to see this ministry spread. Tears were flowing when we sang to our boys. The Saturday night ceremony reminded me of how God the Father keeps us close.- Jay S.
Having this time set aside for my son is invaluable. The weekend provides me the opportunity to show him what I think of him, and to teach him about being a man.- Randall G.
I had a wonderful time with my son. We made some much needed connections. Thank you!- Jarred G.
I loved having other facilitators present to help guide the experiences. I overcame my own fear by climbing the Alpine Tower..”blindfolded”..with help from my son.- Morgan W.
My son Owen tried to climb the zip line pole. He got up about six feet and decided he couldn’t do it. Later that day we went back–and with a little coaching from other Dads–he conquered his fear. He made it to the top and then rode it back down. I loved spending time with Owen-letting him know that he truly is important to me-and no matter what happens–I will be there for him. – Peder J.
From Father’s Heart Weekend 2011
I didn’t know this weekend would be for me too. I gained so much confidence as a father this weekend. I was always too embarrassed to play basketball or fish with my son because I never learned how. But here, I found other men to teach me what I was missing, and to teach my son at the same time. – Paul P.
I realized how much my son wanted and needed purely one-on-one time with me as his daddy. We got some great time together and that couldn’t have happened at home the same way. My son and I connected in some rare ways, and I praise God for that. Thanks for the freedom to get my true feelings for my son out of my heart and into his. – Reid S.
I was honored and humbled by how much time, care, and support the other fathers poured into me and my son. I thank you all for answering God’s call and hosting this powerful weekend. Thank you from the bottom of my heart! – Mark C.
I loved taking an art project that started out as a disaster and my son ministered to me and encouraged me that we could use our creativity to redeem it, and sure enough, we managed to stick with it and make it exactly what we wanted to capture. – Bryan C.
Great experience! My son thoroughly enjoyed. This was my first father/son weekend event, so I was probably more impacted evaluating my own emotions, past, and role as a father. Definitely want to attend next year. – Len G.
My most meaningful experience was the times I would cry and my son would cry as well, not in sadness but in happiness. He kept telling me how he would never forget this weekend. – Shawn M.
This morning I asked my son what he would tell his yonger brother if he asked you why he should come when he gets older. he told me that he would tell him “cause you got what it takes”. I guess the lesson sunk in! – Jim G.
Thank you to Abba’s Way for an amazing weekend of activities for boys. You challenged me anew to spend time with my son and teach him more of what it means to be a man. We both had an outstanding time. Thank you! – Kevin F.
This was nothing short of a divine encounter. I appreciate your sensibility to the Holy Spirit in planning the events. It was as if you looked into my son’s own heart and planned everything for him. He loves guns/laser tag. He loves art. he loves freedom. I am speechless about how it was so divinely orchestrated. – Traylor W.
The Affirmation Ceremony was perfect! Thank you for the opportunity to share with my son in that setting. Great job! – Keith M.
From Father’s Heart Weekend 2010
The affirmation ceremony was awesome! Cal, my son was strong in the ring of fire. – Austin Mitchell.
The encouragement my sons received from the staff and other Dads was fantastic. The blessing and affirmation ceremonies were truly a gift and my son’s favorite part. – Eric Fuller.
One of the most meaningful experiences during the weekend was looking into my son’s eyes and sharing love for each other through the activities and one-on-one time. Amazing experience-priceless! – Steve Smitherman.
I appreciated the times during the weekend when my son accomplished something and he was able to share it with me. It made our time together doubly meaningful! – Gary Peat.
Giant Swing, Wet Willy, Banana Boat and football rocked! I told my son that I loved him and he confidently said, “I know.” – Brett Berneburg.
The affirmation ceremony was very touching for me, not only with my own son, but watching other fathers and sons. – Richard Hunter.
When we arrived at the fire and removed the blindfolds, Noah looked at me and said, “I will remember this forever, I love this!” – Joel Mayes.
Abba’s Way is a crucial ministry addressing a huge void in our society and churches. Thank you for leading us on this journey. – Joe Cook.
The most meaningful experience was a simple and honest hug my son gave me as he decided to get into my bunk and go to sleep. – Bryan Coley.
The affirmation ceremony hit a home run with my son. – Mike Bellini.
I was able to totally unplug and actually forgot where I was…so close to home yet so far away. It was great. – Chris Slover.
Being here with my son afforded me multiple opportunities to put him first, for us to walk together and talk uninterrupted. – Charlie Babcock.
Our free time was amazing! You haven’t lived until you have rubbed lake sand in each other’s hair. – Blake Boyd.
A life changing experience that I am going to not only continue, but recommend to all my friends! – Jay Cannon.
I loved the balance of activities and down-time/fun-time. I loved seeing excitement in my son’s eyes. – Bill Reeves.
This weekend was a memory-maker with new and unique activities. The bonding with my son and other men was invaluable and unmatched by anything else we do. – Roy Roper.
I really can’t express my gratitude to all of you that have developed, nurtured, and volunteered for the Father’s Heart weekend. There are so many moments of blessing that I keep reflecting on since the weekend ended. My son Joey remembers big and small events “the sword, playing hockey, and the brownie with the cookie at the bottom!”. My top 5 would be: 1. war paint and “YOU ARE!” 2. singing 3. Wet Willie 4 times 4. 10:30 PM bike ride and 5. fishing, hockey and bike riding all before breakfast! God revealed to me on the first day that my son and I are very different, and that I need to celebrate that instead of trying to correct and control it. Joey is all about the journey, not the destination. I need to live inside that more often myself. The weekend allowed me to do just that and let him call the shots. I was blown away by Saturday night, moved forever and then again Sunday morning all the more. I’ll never forget it fellows, and I’ll be back next year. Thank you – Richard Hunter.
From Father’s Heart Weekend 2009
The most meaningful experience was the beloved son ceremony. But, guys, I find it hard to express in words how amazing this event was. Everything was so well thought out yet it felt so natural with my son. I’m really excited about carrying this on throughout the year and appreciate all the work you put into the event.
Watching my son be brave and climb the climbing wall and also do the zip line. Learning more about my son and myself from the low rope course. Making the art project with my son. Taking the time to shoot BB’s.
AbbasWay–Awesome event!! Very well done. Only time will tell how it deeply impacted my sons. That said, the weekend helped me realize I need to change my parenting approach on how I deal with my oldest son.
Keeping my boy on a long leash allowed me the opportunity to watch him explore and find the adventurer within. The campfire ceremony on Saturday night was an unbelievable bonding experience. One of the best weekends I’ve had with my son in years!!
My favorite times–can’t pick just one: 1. Leap of Faith – really saw my son’s courage and adventurous, conquering spirit 2. Modeling – keeping evil out of the circle 3. Looking through the eyes to the heart 4. Affirmation ceremony
My most meaningful experience was seeing my son laugh and him looking into my eyes with such joy. Please know- the weekend was amazing. I am forever grateful to you three men!
My most meaningful experience was spending an entire weekend able to be focus on Daniel; affirming him, and reconnecting with an old college friend who was at the camp!
AbbasWay, Praise the Lord for each of you and for your commitment to the “Father – Son” relationship. My prayer is that each of you is blessed without measure, pressed down, and overflowing from the gift you have given me and my son of relationship grounded as beloved sons of a risen Lord. Both Andrew and I truly experienced something special this weekend and for that I am so very thankful. I could never even begin to repay you for what you have given us. Wow is all I can say. Absolutely WOW! Thanks again and know that each of you is in our prayers for the selfless sacrifices you have made to ensure each of us had an incredible time. You all are awesome men and beloved Sons of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Thank you! – Marc Kochamba.
After the Sunday ceremony I was leaving with my son Caleb. We stopped at the entrance to Deer Run, because I felt a prompt that the week-end was not yet complete. I asked Caleb what would happen if we were going down a path and I took the road to the right and he the one to the left. His answer “we would be separated”. If we kept going down those wrong roads we would really get separated. I explained that Sin separate’s us from God. I gave him the bible to let him read Romans 3:23. I explained that until we ask Jesus to forgive our sins, and take his proper place in our life that we are separated from our heavenly father. With tears flowing I explained that I asked Jesus to come into my heart at his age, and what a difference it has made to not feel separated from my heavenly father. I don’t know why this was such a tearful moment, but God was in it as Caleb asked Jesus into his heart and to forgive his sins. Now I know that I will never be separated from my son as we are in the Lambs book of Life for eternity. – Billy Davis.
It was all fantastic and I am truly grateful. Best weekend I have ever had with my son. The night ceremony, protection circle, and looking son in eyes was the most emotional for me.
I will be forever grateful for you and this weekend. You created a space and time that surpassed the troubles of this world. It was the closest picture of Jacob and I playing in heaven with the Lord smiling and waving at us. Beyond what I expected or even hoped for. I will never see my son the same again. Watching him laugh, smile, walk, eat, run, climb, swim. Especially laugh. I can’t stop the tears from the image of him laughing with such innocence, freedom, spirit and power. I received thanks from many men for putting together the bird-house project. What’s funny is that it was such a blessing to me and I want to thank you for giving us the opportunity to share in this experience. I just realized that at 34 years of age, my dad bought me that power saw for when we framed and trimmed in our home theatre and in-wall beer fridge. A step up from bird-houses but the same experience of working together like when I was a kid. It’s been in storage for three years. On the way home, actually at the exit to Deer Run, Jacob, with a look of wonder and kind of talking to himself said, “I cried a lot this weekend. I cried when I put the sword in the ground and looked in your eyes, I really cried when you sang to me and I cried a couple times when I thought I’d lost you.” After two hours on the road I had shared a few things I loved watching him do over the weekend. I asked him, ‘What are some things you like about your dad?’, He thought and said, ‘I like that you’re funny. I like that you’re fun (a pause and looked at me) and I like how you love me.’ My breath went out of my lungs, tears fell, welling up from the deep in my heart. There was silence for a while. That was the purpose of the whole weekend. For him to know that he has my heart, that he is my beloved son. With fresh excitement, he said loudly several times on the way home, ‘I am Jacob, son of Rob, and I am a beloved son.’ He found out this weekend, who he is. And so did I. The most profound experience of the weekend was Dave’s ritual yesterday morning with the Fathers’ ring of protection. I could go on about it, but I’ll just say that my dad didn’t protect me. I must protect my sons’ and I cannot do it alone. If I had been alone yesterday, the dark forces would have devoured my son. I would not have been able to stand strong, no matter how hard I tried or strong my desire. As I was crying out from my soul in that overwhelming realization, I saw Billy across the circle with mud on his shirt and tears dripping to the floor. He and I shared that same burden and for a few moments we stood strong as men, real men. I must find other men to lock arms with here at home. There just seems to be so many dad’s with the attitude of, ‘We’re doing fine.’ They just don’t know. I will find them, I will now have my eyes open wide. As Nate Larkin says, ‘God will bring them into my life, it’s my job not to run them off!’ Your brother, cowboy, warrior, beloved son, – Rob Brown.
From Father’s Heart Weekend 2008
My son and I drew closer this weekend, a closeness that I did not know how to achieve by myself! I have the utmost respect for every person this weekend-Thank you!- Ernie Eash.
I found the fun of following my son into a boy’s life. We did several things together that were new for both of us—the joy of discovering adventures together was amazing, and that’s harder to pull off in the course of “normal life” at home.-Ben Ellis.
“The Father’s Heart Weekend was so powerful. I’ve been on a high from all the incredible, life-changing experiences. I already ordered and received the book Adam’s Return. I hope to start it this weekend. Keep me posted on ways I can stand with you for this ministry. And thanks for being faithful to God’s call in regards to this gathering. The fruit of it is beyond measure.” – Allen Arnold.
“I’m realizing the importance and impact about intentionally spending time with William. I believe the experience of this weekend will strengthen William and I through the memories.”- Joe Hoffert.
“I loved watching my son find and establish his own identity.” -Bradford Crowther.
“I can’t begin to thank you guys enough for doing the Father’s Heart Weekend Experience! I am praying that this grows and spreads across the state, the Church, and the world as one of the tools we need to revitalize men as Sons! You don’t need but a few experiences like that one to write a best-selling book….I thought Joshua might be just a little too young and distracted to really get much out of it, but he was DEEPLY affected by it. On Sunday night, 8/24, at bed-time, he was in tears and couldn’t really explain it. Only that these were not really tears of pain, but longing; and though he couldn’t explain what he was feeling, it was coming from me. So I stopped trying to understand or get an explanation, and just relished in our connection. Please let me know how I can help with any future efforts. And, hey, we need to work to bestow femininity to our daughters, too…” In Christ, – Joel Goehner.
“I really enjoyed the obstacle course—I’m reminded how difficult it has been in my own life to HEAR my Father’s voice.”- Mark Snider.
“The Father’s Heart Weekend was a great time to reconnect with my son and I hope will be a catalyst for more intentional time spent together.” – Kevin Vedders.
“Andrew and I are closer. He is my beloved son. God has and is healing me.”- Marc Kochamba.
“The opportunity to connect to my boy’s heart—in a place where we could all drop our guard and let each other be each other was great. Looking forward to what God does in our relationship in the future.” – Jack Noonan.
“This was an incredibly facilitated event—tapping into men with giftings that I don’t have–that allowed me to share my heart with my boys in a way that I desired. It also helped me to become a better father because I was impacted by other gifted men that are called by God and answered the call.” – Eric Martin.
“This was an amazing memory maker and I can’t commend the leadership or thank them enough! It was simply awesome!” – Roy Roper.
“This weekend was the perfect time for me and my son to play, laugh, love and pray. Not only did I celebrate the boy he is—but I called out the man he will be in the company of other boys and men. Incredibly, God as my Father did the same to me. We both savored every single minute.” – Allen Arnold.
“It was an incredibly moving weekend as a father and healing as a son. My son and I needed this connection. It was incredible.” – Jim Schettler.
“This experience was intended to be primarily for my son, but I discovered tht it meant a lot to my own growth as well. I felt God stirring my heart to be the King and Priest He meant me to be for my children. Thank You!” – Jared England.
“I would like to again thank you for the wonderful weekend !! As a dad I feel equipped to be a “Dad” now, my heart is filled with so much joy, I am seeing glimpses of a relationship that I have desired to have with my son for years. Thank You, Thank You, first hearing God on this and then following through with it!!” – Ernie Eash.