Dads matter! That’s the foundational message of John Finch, a man who struggled with his own father wound. Today, John helps men (and women) heal from past hurts. He also helps guys become the dad they long to be. If you’re not convinced that dads matter, then be sure to check out a snippet of John’s story, below.
A Story of Hope
John grew up the youngest of 3 boys in a suburb of Dallas, where he lost his father to suicide at age 11. As a young man, John did anything he could to avoid confronting the wounds he suffered due to being fatherless. His craving for affirmation from a father who was not there to provide it led him to seek the world’s affirmation in many unhealthy ways.
To find value as a man, he created a false persona that left him completely unfulfilled. His life was based on the pursuit of money in order to prove his success, and he became a social alcoholic as he strived to be the life of every party and gain the attention of those around him.
It was only when John realized and dealt with the unresolved issues of his father’s wound that he was able to become truly fulfilled. On April 20th, 2009, he finally came face to face with the issues that drove him to seek approval from a father who was not there to give it to him. By forgiving his father and recognizing what it truly means to be a man by God’s standard, he became a new man, husband, and father.
Today, John helps men understand The Father Effect, overcome old wounds, and transform into the dad they long to be.
Shortly after meeting John, I watched his movie, The Father Effect—which I highly recommend. Then, I had the privilege of interviewing John during our Thriving at Home Summit. Not only is John a blast to talk to, but he also provided a ton of practical parenting wisdom as well as insights on overcoming old wounds. As a daddy to four amazing daughters, I especially appreciated what John had to say.
Here are a few of my favorite insights from my conversation with John about why dads matter, The Father Effect, and becoming the dad, husband, and man that God intends you to be!
The Father Effect and Father Wounds
- The father wound itself is something our dad does or doesn’t do to us or say to us that causes extended pain. An example is a dad who never said, “I love you. I’m proud of you. I believe in you.” Abandonment can leave a father wound.
- The results of John’s father wound and feeling abandoned by his dad triggered a downward spiral.
- When John came to a place of brokenness and forgiveness, it radically changed his life as a man, husband, and father.
- The father wound is often not a one and done thing. The spiritual warfare connected to this can be an ongoing battle.
- Forgiveness finally allowed John to let go of the baggage of his past.
Dads Matter Today!
- Even good dads can and will wound their kids. This is why dads must put their faith in Christ. Ultimately, He is the one who will lead and guide our kids.
- Great dads let their kids know they are not the perfect father. Being authentic and honest with our kids is a good thing.
- Apologizing to our kids and asking for forgiveness creates a family culture where it’s acceptable to ask for forgiveness when family members are less than perfect.
Creating a New Legacy
- Many men are angry and can’t tell you why. Sometimes this anger is connected to a father wound. Addiction is another issue that can be connected to a father wound.
- The key to creating a new legacy is getting to the root of the issue and learning to forgive.
- Both men and women can have father wounds.
- Every boy needs to know he has what it takes. Every woman needs to know she’s cherished. This is why dad’s matter. They have an integral role in their kid’s lives. And if kids don’t get this from there dad, the father wound comes in.
Getting Past Old Father Wounds
- Healing is a process, and everyone’s journey is different. There is purification in the process and healing in the heartache. John says, “Everyone wants a resurrection without a crucifixion.” In the hard work, God takes us to a place that we’ve never gone before.
- Healing starts with (1 Admitting we are wounded 2) Asking God to come into that woundedness. 2) Seeking wise counsel to help us on the journey.
- Many men don’t want to admit they are wounded. Yet, there is nothing wrong with this.
- Often healing comes through sharing our story over and over again. This can even be done with our kids. Sharing stories about our struggles can soften that facade we have (and often think we need to have) that we’re perfect.
First Steps to Finding Forgiveness
- Start by confiding in a friend who will love you through the journey. Find another man, if you’re a man. Find another woman if you’re a woman.
- Moms and dads need to know that it’s never too late to be forgiven. Your kids are never too far gone. You’ve never messed up so bad that you can’t come back from it. There is always hope!
- Finally, know that God can open doors and provide opportunities that you never imagined. On the other side of forgiveness is a peace that’s beyond understanding, a different marriage, and a bright future.
Diving Deeper into Why Dads Matter
I love John’s passion for fathers and for helping those with difficult upbringings find healing. To dive deeper, be sure to check out John’s website, www.thefathereffect.com.
You may also want to check out the all-access pass to our Thriving at Home Summit, where you can hear our complete interview.
For more great insights from the Thriving at Home Summit, be sure to check out the following posts:
- Everyone’s Got Bears: Taming anxiety, depression, and fatigue.
- Designing Your Dream Marriage: How to create your best relationship!
- The Problem with Being Nice: Be kind. Be good. But please don’t be nice!
Continuing the Conversation on The Father Effect
Let’s keep the conversation going.
- Dads matter! How has your father positively impact your life?
- What are you doing to leave a lasting and positive impression in the lives of your kids?
- How have you seen The Father Effect (either positive or negative) at work?
- What was your biggest takeaway from John’s wisdom and story?
- What thoughts would you add to this post on why dads matter?
Jenny and I would love to hear from you and continue this conversation in the comments below!