June is known for several things like; the end of school, the official beginning of summer, my mother’s birthday (she may be reading this) and weddings, but honoring fathers ranks on the list of things that happen in June. There are 4 things about Father’s Day I want to share.
This yearly Sunday event in June will evoke a lot of different emotions in so many people (me included for a few reasons). It always does, and maybe more so this year because our emotional health as a whole is suffering as we step into the after-effects of the pandemic. I talked about that a little in my last post Do You Remember Your First Home?
Thursday night I attended church at Southeast Christian that kicked off our weekend services. The topic was, of course, Father’s Day. We are in a new series called At The Movies which we typically do in the summer. This weekend’s movie, in honor of Father’s Day, is I Can Only Imagine.
What a hard message for a lot of people.
Have you seen the movie? It is based on the life of Bart Millard, the writer of the hit song I Can Only Imagine, and also a founding member of the band Mercy Me. This movie has lots of trigger points based on all the main characters. It’s because of the movie and a few conversations I had about the movie that led me down the path to write this post;
4 Things About Father’s Day
- It’s a hard day for those who can identify with Bart Millard. The childhood he endured with an angry and abusive father, and being abandoned as a young boy by his mother, who was also abused by his dad, will hit many people right where they live. It will dredge up memories long since buried, that were never fully dealt with, if they were even dealt with at all. Who wants to go back and relive that junk?
- It’s a hard movie for people, both men and women alike, parents really, who feel they fell short in the nurturing department when it came to raising their kids. I get it. Parenting is a hard gig. No hand book, per se, with the exception of the Bible, THE guide book for life, but still, every kid is different. There is no one-size-fits-all manual when it comes to raising kids. It’s a learn-as-you-go, screw-up-along-the-way kind of adulting activity that leaves some folks feeling sub par at best.
- There are people who have had the amazing opportunity to be raised by men who value family above everything, with the exception of their relationship with Jesus. The thought of that even now, causes me to pause in wonder. I could park on this one for a good long while. What makes some men choose to devote their lives to being the best husband and father they can be, while others tend to view it as just another thing, like work and household chores?
- And let’s be honest, Father’s Day isn’t just about the dad we had, whether good or bad, absent or present. No, this day also represents the men we are married to, were married to, the father of our children or a man who in someway was/is significant in our lives. And, as a certified life coach of wives of addicts, I know how hard this day is. I also know that this day definitely does not rank up there as one of the top favorite days of those women.
Let’s be honest, Father’s Day is a great time to stay off of social media all together if you fall in the category of number 4. It’s not that we don’t appreciate all the good men in the lives of those we love and those we don’t know well. We do! We are glad there are men of integrity who devote their lives to their wives and families. It gives these women hope for their marriages and futures. But depending on the circumstances of what is transpiring in your life currently, looking at the posts on social can be hard.
I just couldn’t leave that unsaid. It’s what I do. It’s who I walk with. I see you. You are not crazy. You are not unworthy, petty or less-than in any way for having all the feelings that surround this day. Please hear that and hold it close to your heart as you go through Father’s Day.
Back to our dads, now. I had a pretty awesome dad. This is my second Father’s Day without him. He has been gone for a year and a half, and boy do I miss him. As I have written before in My Dad, I was blessed when it came to dads, so honoring fathers was always a good day for me. But it’s harder now because my dad is gone, which may be the case with some of you.
5. I know, I know! This post is called 4 Things About Father’s Day, but this one is a bonus! No matter what kind of father you had, and perhaps you had no dad at all that you knew of, you have a heavenly Father who loves you with a passion that knows no limits.
He is a Father who loves you with a fierce love beyond what any of us could ever imagine, or have ever experienced. He has promised to never leave you. Even when it looks like He doesn’t care, He is always working to make the tales of your life turn into a story for your good, and one that brings glory to Him.
I’m not sure where you are when it comes to Father’s Day or the whole dad thing in general. I know there are more than just 4 (or 5) things about Father’s Day than I mentioned. There are different situations and circumstances for us all, but most of us can relate to one of these categories.
Here’s one thing I DO know for sure; Father’s Day can dredge up all kinds of feels and memories. It can cause us to react to every-day normal things in a not-so-normal way without us even knowing why. That’s because our bodies store all the things, the good and the not so good alike, and even when we are unaware, we can react to something ordinary in an over-the-top kind of way, much like people who experience PTSD or C-PTSD.
I don’t know why or how that happens, but I know it does. So don’t be alarmed or caught off guard if that happens to you. You may think you are past the events of your childhood (and/or marriage), or it doesn’t matter anymore, or even that you’ve already dealt with it, and maybe you have, but traumatic things from our pasts have a way of popping up unannounced. And it may have nothing at all to do with your dad.
Where do you fit? How is Father’s Day for you? Do you relate to the 4 things about Father’s Day? Would you spend some time giving these 4 things thought or two, and if you’re brave, ask God to reveal to you how He wants to show up in your life as the father you never had.
Remember this; You Are Not Alone.