Approximately 70 men met from February 23-26, 2017, for the first Fathers’ Conference which was held in Big Sandy, TX. From the inspirational messages by evangelist Tom Harmon to the practical applications presented by businessman Dwain Swanson, fathers were challenged to take their walk with the Lord to a new level. Object lessons by Gary Fraley emphasized the importance of prayer, and testimonies from Bob Newhouse and Jim Bob Duggar encouraged dads to remain faithful in their role as the spiritual leaders of their homes.
It was such a special treat to hear from Tom Harmon who graciously agreed to include this Fathers’ Conference in his busy speaking schedule this year. During one of his messages he shared the Gospel, closing with an invitation. Tom asked for anyone who wanted to receive Jesus as his Savior to step forward. One father responded! What a blessing to see one more sinner turn to Jesus for salvation. This man’s public response to salvation was one of the highlights of the Fathers’ Conference.
Dwain Swanson’s message related to the many goals that God had prompted him to accomplish before the Fathers’ Conference. Some specific goals included having devotions with his family, working out with his wife, losing weight, and spending some set-aside time in prayer. The message was very practical and genuine, and Dwain’s humble transparency was inspiring.
The object lessons that Gary Fraley shared from years of elk hunting and the analogies he pulled from packing a horse were very illustrative, demonstrating the importance of prayer. Once again, the reminder that “the important is seldom urgent and the urgent is seldom important” dovetailed well with the messages Gary shared about the vital importance of prayer in the life of every father.
In the final session, a testimony of moral freedom was shared by a father along with his married son. They emphasized the importance of finding real healing for our wounds so the enemy cannot sell us a counterfeit balm for our hurts. We praise the Lord for the impact of this testimony—as well as the entire Father’s Conference—on the hearts and lives of the men who participated. As a result of the positive feedback we received from the participants, plans are underway for a Men’s Conference for fathers and sons next year, January 18-20, 2018. If you would like to stay informed about upcoming events and reports posted online you can subscribe to IBLP News & Reports emails at: iblp.org/news.