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You will start to actually feel your Heavenly Father's presence.

I have just come back from laying my father's body to rest beside my mother at Warrior's Rest Cemetery. The loss of a parent leaves a huge hole in a child's heart that is sometimes never overcome.

If the parent was loving, complementary, supportive and giving properly balanced discipline to supply security, then the loss of all of that positivity can leave the child feeling hopeless, lost and unsure that they can handle the hassles of life without that support system.

Because my father always rose early and he and my mother were real prayer warriors, I rose each morning knowing that I had been prayed for already and God was at work helping me with whatever would come my way that day. I miss that early morning comfort and confidence.

Children of parents who were not as God meant parents to be but were selfish, rejecting, abusive or choosing to be absent also feel a loss at their passing. The biggest loss is of the hope that was always there that some day they would get their parent's approval. Now that will never happen.

There are many ways people cope with this loss. Some go into a state of depression and hopelessness and stay there for years. Some try to hide from the loss by getting overly busy or substance abuse. Some harden their hearts and stuff the negative feelings deep inside pretending on the outside that it doesn't bother them. Unfortunately, this causes the feelings to turn poisonous to this person's very soul. When you have had a loving, strong, protective father or mother as I did it's pretty easy to turn your heart and hurt over to your Heavenly Father who promises to never leave or forsake you. His love fills the hole left by the earthly parent and gives comfort and peace. But it can be difficult to picture God as a loving trustworthy Father if your earthy parent was not so. This is where you write down every characteristic that you think the "Perfect Parent" would have. Then you find a scripture that shows that God has that characteristic and write it beside the quality. Next each day you focus on one of the qualities on your list and make a choice to thank your Heavenly Father that He is that for you. As you focus on this your soul will begin to change its beliefs caused by wounds and loss and you will start to actually feel your Heavenly Father's presence around you hugging, holding and carrying you. I can testify that even the love of an earthly parent doesn't meet the need as deeply as the Heavenly Father's closeness does. So try it and find the peace and ability to release the pain.

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