Love 3 min read

Dad, I Wish You Were Here

This is why we need the villlage.

Although raised by his strong single mother, Kaden was in need of male guidance and the community at The Cave of Adullam gave it to him.

Kaden is part of a transformational youth training program, run by Mr. Jason Wilson, called The Cave of Adullam, based in Detroit, Michigan.  Created  in 2007, Mr. Wilson started the training center to empower struggling young men to live a life guided by faith, physical and emotional strength.  

Mr. Wilson spoke with TDJakes.com about his work with the young men at his camp.

“I used to be a hip hop music producer.  I found that it painted this image of false masculinity,” he said.   At The Cave of Adullam, Mr. Wilson uses the transformational power of positive words to guide these young men into their teenage years and on into manhood. “We are real careful with using words that are both powerful and positive”.

He created this program as a “comprehensive emotional, physical and mental training system based on the notion of Musar Ru, which translates to “Discipline of the Spirit’”.  

The program is an amalgamation of the spiritual precepts of the Bible, meditation and the combat principles of Jiu-jitsu and Aiki-jitsu.  The center has helped over a hundred young men to channel their “unresolved anger, ADHD symptoms, anxieties and fears.”

The day this video was taken, Kaden was completing his training.  In order to complete the training his father needed to be there to do push ups with him on his back.

Kaden’s dad wasn’t able to make it.  Moved to tears as he remembered his own father missing so many of his life’s events, Mr. Wilson reassured Kaden that he was never alone--the other men in his life stepped up to be there for him.

All the boys who attend the camp feel safe, supported and challenged because, as he shared, “They know  we love them”.

Recently, Mr. Wilson was among one of only sixty-two men to travel to D.C. to receive the President’s Volunteer Service Award.  His work with young black men strives to “create a generation of men that are physically conscious and spiritually strong enough to navigate through a world of pressure.”

Mr. Wilson’s commitment to these young men models loving grace and dedication. 

His own son asked him, “Dad, how did you know how to be a great dad when your dad wasn’t?”  

He replied, “I gave you what I longed for.”

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