Forgiving This Father’s Day

Jeremiah Roy

Jeremiah Roy

Clarkston Campus Teaching Pastor

It wasn’t a question. It was a pleading declaration from my wife to mend the years of brokenness, resentment and shame that defined my relationship with my father.

My beautiful wife Maria and I were just newly married at the time and were starting to talk about starting a family. While it was easier to distance myself from my father and not deal with the years of pain, I knew Maria was right.

Growing pains 
I grew up barely seeing my dad. He worked third shift and put in more than 70 hours a week. While he was absent most of my childhood, my mom started struggling with alcohol—which caused him to come home angry. I could cut the tension in the house with a knife.

Since he wasn’t around, he put a lot of pressure on me to take care of the house and my mother. I learned how to be a father figure to my younger sister.
My dad was the epitome of tough love. His favorite line was, “Get some grit.”
The way I viewed my father as a kid—judgmental, disappointed, absent—carried into my adulthood in how I viewed God. I pictured God up there looking down at me with those disappointed eyes saying, “Jeremiah, figure it out, dude.”
Winning people over, achieving, and striving to be happy defined my early 20s. Gosh, I was lonely. I never had enough.
This isn’t how the story ends 
About 10 years ago when our oldest Caleb was 4 years old, my father was visiting during the most epic meltdown.
“You need to get control of that kid,” my dad said.
I blew up. Are you kidding me? He had no right! At least I was present for my son. I was doing the best I could.
After a screaming match, we both surrendered. I ugly cried.

It was that moment that God revealed to me the pain and weight I had been carrying that needed to be released. I heard Maria’s words again, “You need to deal with your relationship with your dad,” that I failed miserably to do years prior.
It was in that moment of finally dealing with the emotions and getting real with my dad I realized that all along he was loving me the best he could in the brokenness and dysfunction. Jesus met me in that moment.
That moment changed who I am as a father.
10 years later, I talk to my dad every day. Jesus truly worked a miracle on a relationship I never knew could be restored.
I’m grateful for my journey to finding true healing with my father. It’s taught me so many things and has made me a better father to my kids. I can’t perform my way into being a good dad. It takes modeling the person of Jesus and fully surrendering.
That mentality has brought me to a beautiful new journey in fatherhood.
Sweet baby girl 
We always wanted a little girl. While I’m sure we have an angel girl baby up in heaven, God gave us three healthy, thriving boys here on earth.
Our little girl came to us about nine months ago as a vulnerable one-year-old with a small bag of clothes and nothing else. She was our first foster baby, and within a couple of days I felt a deep love for her.

One night up rocking her to sleep I realized how alone she was. It wasn’t unlike how I felt at times as a kid.
But then I was reminded of the heart of Jesus. She isn’t alone and will never be alone. Everyone belongs.
This was my opportunity to share that spirit of belonging and love that Jesus always covered me in when I needed it the most. We had her for over nine months, and she recently had a chance to go with reunited with her little brother.

But our foster journey isn’t over. Her new baby sister is six weeks old and has been placed in our home. Here I am, holding her in my arms, realizing these sweet girls are the best gifts I have been given as a father.
I don’t know if I could have this outpouring of love if I didn’t finally accept love from my heavenly and earthly father.
Father’s Day
This Father’s Day, I challenge you to surrender any broken relationships to God. Whether that’s with your own father or another relationship in your life. You never know what adventures will come if you let forgiveness overflow of your heart. This Father’s Day, I choose to forgive again and again. My kids will fail me, my wife will fail me, my dad will fail me, but my Heavenly Father never will.

Share this post

You Might Like...
Chris Zarbaugh

Do I think about myself too much?

Everyone has that moment where they answer the inevitable question: “What do you want to be when you grow up?” To be completely honest, I never really had dreams of making an impact of any

Dave Wilson

Church can be boring.

It’s truly amazing to me that I am a pastor at a church, considering my journey getting here. I grew up being dragged to church by my single mom whether I wanted to go or

Never miss another blog post.
Subscribe to be notified when new posts are published.


Learning Labs

Experience a closer connection with God and His presence in your life while meeting others who are pursing the same.  Explore rhythms and practices that can help us abide in the love, grace and hope of God.

Please email with any questions.



Birmingham Campus

We are offering a time for our congregation to gather after the 10am service for prayer in the Groves Auditorium, 20500 W 13 Mile Rd, Beverly Hills, MI 48025.

On Sunday evening, Dec 5, parents of high school and middle school students are invited to the second half of our Edge gathering at Genesis Church, 309 N Main St, Royal Oak, MI 48067, at 6:15pm. We will have a breakout to equip parents in caring for themselves and processing pain with their children in times of tragedy.

Parents & Student Resources

Parents – self care is critical. It’s important to do your own processing with another adult so that you can be more present as your child processes. Here are tools that you can use to get you started.


Helpful Blogs

Other Materials

Counselors Are Needed After Tragedy

“The aftermath of the Oxford shooting tragedy will undoubtedly result in traumatic symptoms and experiences across our communities for quite some time. Healing the brain through evidence-based therapies is absolutely possible with clinical guidance. There is a valuable village of Trauma Therapists with collective resources standing by for Oxford, for both direct and secondary survivors to engage in therapy. Until then, we honorably hold a sacred space, as students, families, staff and school partners continue to mourn.” -Laura Azoni, LMSW, Founder of Sanctuary Services

Orion Campus

We believe that unity at this time is more important than ever. Several churches in the area are partnering together to offer space for students to begin the process of healing.

We will have several grief and trauma specialists on site this Sunday evening at our Orion Campus (4640 S Lapeer Rd Lake Orion, MI 48359) from 5-6:30pm and will have a night of prayer, worship and an opportunity for students to process with each other.

Tate Myre Funeral:
Monday, 12.6 Visitation 1 to 8pm
Tuesday, 12.7 Visitation 10-12pm and funeral at Noon

Clinton Township Campus

We will be offering a time for our congregation to gather after each service for a time of corporate prayer in the Greatroom. Prayer will be offered at 10:15 am and 12:15 pm. (25000 Hall Rd, Charter Twp of Clinton, MI 48036)

This Sunday at 3:30 pm as a community we want to gather, pray and mourn together. We are all looking for answers and wondering why tragedy happens but we can find hope and peace in Jesus. 

Troy Campus

Join us Sunday night, December 5th for a Community Prayer Vigil at Kensington Church at 6:00 pm. Invite friends, family, neighbors, and coworkers to come together for a time of hope and prayer. 

Following the Vigil, at 7:00 pm, there will be breakouts for students and for parents to process and be equipped in caring for themselves and those around in times of tragedy.

Marriage Classes

What grows marriages? Focusing on the two of you and being in community!
The Marriage Course includes seven sessions, designed to help couples invest in their relationship and build a strong marriage. Some couples do the course to intentionally invest in their relationship, others are looking to address more specific challenges. Either way, the course offers essential tools and practical ideas to help you build a relationship that lasts a lifetime. The Marriage Course is based on Christian principles but designed for all couples with or without a church background.

Please email with any questions.

Financial Peace University (FPU)

Financial Peace University (FPU) is a catalyst to help people live in financial freedom and enable them to have a posture of openhandedness. We have witnessed numerous Kensington families experience life change as a result of applying Biblical truths to their personal finances. The real blessing is seeing people create lives of margin that allow them to hear and respond to the Lord’s calling on their lives.

Please email with any questions.

Bible Basics

Whether you are brand new to the Bible or have been reading it for decades, Bible Basics is a course that will help you understand the overall flow of the Bible. Over the course of several weeks, learn how the Bible came from the original writers to the English versions we have today. We’ll look at the big-picture story of the Bible and how all the individual books add to the whole. We’ll even learn a little about the history of the Jewish nation. But most of all, we’ll grow in our awe of the amazing author of this amazing book!

Please email  with any questions.


Clinton Township




What is my purpose? What value does the Bible have in my life? How do I pray? How can I grow in confidence to share my faith? These are the big questions that are at the heart of what it means to have a relationship with God. Alpha is a space to explore life’s big questions, to say what you think and to hear other people’s points of view. Over ten-weeks you will explore and discover while listening to weekly topics, participating in table discussion, and developing community. Alpha courses meeting in-person gather around a meal.

You don’t have to come for the whole series—just check it out for the first session and see what you think. No pressure.

Please email with any questions.


easter Tickets

No tickets needed for Good Friday


Together Again

updated June 23, 2021

It’s been life-giving to be in-person for our weekend services since last July when we reopened. If you haven’t yet, we invite you to join us in person sometime soon.

Reservations and ticketing have been discontinued at all our campuses.

Masks are optional at all services, events, and ministry gatherings for kids, students, and adults. We know that everyone needs to make the right health decisions for themselves and their family, so if you feel comfortable removing your mask, you may. And if you’d like to continue wearing a mask or face covering, you may do that as well. This is a personal choice that only you can decide what is best for yourself when attending in person at Kensington.

If you are sick, are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, or have possibly been exposed to COVID-19, please plan to stay home and participate in our services via our many online streaming options.

At the start of the pandemic, Kensington’s Executive Team commissioned a group of staff members as a COVID Task Force to establish protocols and procedures for the safety of our church community. Thanks for sticking with us throughout all the changes and adjustments over the past 15 months.

We’re grateful to be together again!