The Importance of Fathers

Picture a young Native American man running the streets in Reno, Nevada, involved in gang life—fights, parties, alcohol and drug abuse. Surrounded by dysfunction, it would seem there was no way out for this young warrior. His father had been incarcerated more often than not, so he had no one to look up to, no one to train his mind or encourage him. He found a sense of belonging in gangs instead, who train him for battle on the gritty streets of Reno. This young man decides that street life does not satisfy his spirit. He enrolls at Haskell Indian Nations University. At first he struggles and has difficulty living the straight life. He begins to attend Haskell Lighthouse. It is here we enter his story.

He shares with me that he sees consistency in our lives. He sees Patricia and I living a life of encouragement and faith. The spark in his life is fanned into flame by the Holy Spirit. We have been used by God to be the stability and encouragement in his faith walk.

Matthew, Will, and friend at Haskell LIGHT Campus Ministry
Matthew, Will, and friend at Haskell LIGHT Campus Ministry

Our friend graduates from HINU, enrolls at the University of Kansas, begins classes, but is overwhelmed and heads back to Nevada, full of doubt and fear and discouragement because he thinks he has failed. We stay in contact while he works through family issues and visits with his father.

Our friend feels called to return to Kansas to resume classes. Once again we enter his story. He shares that he has been watching and learning from me. What a great honor to mentor such a fine man. The natural leadership abilities he possesses have been developed under the watchful eyes of Jesus.

Will and Matthew at Haskell LIGHT Campus Ministry
Will and Matthew at Haskell LIGHT Campus Ministry

This young warrior now lives by faith and is an example to others searching for a positive role model. The circle is complete. We are often asked, "What do you do at the LIGHT House?" Our friend is one example of what the Holy Spirit does through us in ministry.

- Rev. Will Main (Dakota Sioux), Haskell LIGHT Campus Ministry