When Olivia Michelle Burgess arrived June 11, at 6 pounds, 5 ounces, her father and my nephew, Wesley Everett Burgess, announced her triumphant arrival and held her proudly so her whole generation could admire her and bask in his delight. Olivia is his first born and her appearance just in time for Father’s Day, was perfect, thanks to her beautiful mom, Dannielle.
As we celebrate Father’s Day this Sunday, I remember the lessons, laughter, and love I received from my own amazing and precious father, John. This year I’d like to share 10 of my favorite Big John lessons:
1, If you’re going to get in trouble, do it on your own and not because you were following the crowd.
- If you will always remember to T H I N K, you can avoid a whole bunch of trouble.
- Have your own money so you won’t have to stand around looking stupid.
- If a train leaves the station and stays on track, it WILL reach its destination.
- Words matter. Think long and hard about what you say so you won’t have to eat your words later. Learn all you can.
- Just because you can do a thing doesn’t mean you should. It may not be wrong but it may not be expedient at this time.
- Your word is your bond, if you say you’ll do a thing, be found trying to get it done. Treat others the way you want to be treated. You’re no better than anybody else but you’re as good as anybody else.
- Be careful with your reputation because I was a little boy once, and I know what little boys do. (My dad was over six feet tall with hands the size of baseball gloves—I couldn’t imagine there was ever a time when he was a little boy but he sure was right about those little nasty boys and their agendas!)
- Laughter really is the best medicine! He loved to laugh and when he did, it made me laugh, too.
- You can trust God with anything and everything that concerns you.
My father, John A. Bond Jr., died September 4, 2004, and there are very few days when I don’t remember something he said or get some other gentle reminder of him. I can remember these wonderful lessons because he lived them every day. My precious memories also include my other dad, my great-uncle Carey, who had the most beautiful brown eyes and they danced when he laughed—which was often. He gave everybody some wacky nickname and loved to “carry on foolishness” as he called it. He was compassionate and kind and taught me to see the beauty and humanity in others.
I praise God for my husband, Roger, who is cut from the same cloth as my two heroes and is a great father and an over-the-top Poppy to our four grandchildren and Avery, our great-grandson. A special salute and blessing to my wonderful brothers—the ones I got the easy way and the ones I got by law, my nephews and friends who get up every day and provide guidance, love, honor and care for their families. Let us continue to pray for our neighbors who are separated from their children as they work to offer a better life for their generations to come. Amen.
Looking for inspiration, empowerment, uplift, straight talk, an encouraging word to brighten your day? You’ve arrived! Meet Dr. Cynthia Ann Bond Hopson, best-selling author, educator, inspirational speaker, sistergirl–she’s all that and more. All the way from Stanton, TN (you can’t get there from here) to 50 states, six continents and everything in between, she’s wise, witty and altogether wonderful. She enthusiastically invites you to slow down, sit a spell, and share a giggle or two.