From Porches & Pillars –The Years before Southwood—a prequel ©2016 D. Dean Benton
Brent says Elizabeth Everest is one of the bright lights guiding the Southwood Center’s approach and calling. Ms. Everest was the nanny into whose care Winston Churchill was placed. His parents could not love him. It was beyond his father’s capacity and it appears his mother could not be bothered. Winston said—it became the descriptive phrase of his young life, “I loved my mother, but it was from afar.” That was not his choice. Ever!
Elizabeth Everest loved Winston and taught him about God. One of Churchill’s biographers says that she also “embedded in him a sense of destiny that never left him.”
One of our callings is to duplicate that in each person entrusted into our influence. We will love, give opportunity to know and experience God and imprint each person with knowledge of their uniqueness. We are compelled to help each other to discover and pursue destiny.
Churchill’s father ignored his son, probably hated him. He rarely spoke to him and refused to acknowledge the frequent cries for attention. Young Churchill was shipped off to boarding school as if to get him out of his parent’s sight. One cannot hear this story without marveling that Churchill did not become a brutal, hateful person passing onto society and his own family what he had experienced from his father. Instead, he became a world leader and at the time of his death was deemed the “Greatest Man in the World.”
All that Winston Churchill became can be traced to what was planted in his soul by Elizabeth Everest.
Lord Randolph was a well-known politician who had a disease causing his brain to deteriorate. Young Winston did not know his father was ill. Had he known he could have filtered the savage emotional and verbal abuse. Instead, the rejection came at him full force.
It is said that Churchill made a choice. He made a choice! Instead of reacting and owning the constant negative evaluation, he chose to extend the best of his father. He made a choice. One of the first losses for the abandoned, neglected or abused is the ability to make choices. The self-survival instinct is to go along to get along and to hide. The ability to choose and the decision to choose wisely may also be traced to what Churchill saw in and heard from Elizabeth Everest.
We are dedicated to equipping each other to choose and to then make the best choice. But what about those of us who grew up without such care, love, teaching? What if we had no Elizabeth Everest or Kenneth Lyttle, Jr. to place their hand on our shoulder and impart the Holy Spirit’s unction to choose? And those of us who have not received the empowering of vocal blessings? That tells you what we are about here at Southwood. Healing, deliverance, skill building and community building.
We are not orphans, nor do we have the right to allow anyone under our care to be afflicted by the orphan spirit. We have a heavenly Father who has set into motion plans for our redemption for eternity and into the fullness of Life on this planet. Our heavenly Father partners with us to do His fathering.
We are well branded. Southwood—the community you’ve always longed for.
As I read of Churchill’s father, a song washed over me. “I Have a Heavenly Father!” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CZGm2Cwtlkc