Girls in pretty dresses with their dads.
THIS. An absolute beautiful vision to see.
It started as a thought and led to an event — turned backwards in my movie theatre seat I exclaimed to Josh Bishop, youth pastor of our fifth & sixth grade students at our church:
Let’s host a daddy-daughter dance!!
And that was that. He agreed. We were going to plan an evening for daddies and little girls to connect.
And we did. And it was lovely.
The night included a spaghetti dinner (spaghetti is great on the event budget, by the way) and swing-dance lessons (a priceless sight to see!).
There was a moment, during the spaghetti dinner, where Josh welcomed folks and chatted a bit about the special relationship between a father and a daughter.
Then he said this:
Dads, you didn’t get to choose your daughter; her personality, her passions, her strengths, her hopes and dreams. You didn’t get to choose.
Girls, you didn’t get to choose your dad; how he will love and care for you, how he will pursue you, what he loves to think and do. You didn’t get to choose.
He continued to say:
But! everyday you get to choose to love each other.
We try to control our children.
And our children try to control us.
Some of us would like to think we don’t try to control our kids, but control can be as simple as wanting them to color Cinderella’s hair yellow — because Cinderella is a blonde! But maybe they grab the purple crayon? And in this moment, do you push the yellow or do you let Cinderella show up to the ball with purple hair – sassy and full of spunk!
Or choosing unconditional love.
It’s a choice.
Some control is natural, normal and we’re even called to discipline and raise our kids. We’re supposed to mold and shape them. But our children are also a very specific and special design of God’s own desire; to be watered and nurtured to grow into the best version of who they were created to be.
If ever you feel like maybe perhaps your child is different than you wanted, it’s okay.
Go ahead and say it. This may give you permission to actually see who they really are.
If ever you feel like you would have maybe chosen to write the story a bit differently, it’s okay.
Go ahead and say it. This may actually give the vision to see outside your plans.
My mom has led a woman’s retreat for several years at her church. One year, there was a mom who had three children, all of who have special needs. The condition they all have is something where symptoms didn’t show up until the children were a bit older so they had the three children before they knew it was gentic.
At the retreat the mom shared:
You know, for years I wondered — God, why me?
Over the course of the weekend God whispered gently and quietly to her heart:
Who better to raise them?
In parenting, there will be difficult moments; these moments will be: disheartening, disappointing, . and full-out heartbreaking.
And we wonder why.
To those of you who today are wondering why?
BECAUSE, WHO BETTER THAN YOU!
Everything you are and everything you have to offer is exactly what your child needs.
In fact, of all the women in the world God choose you: your personality, your temperament, your strengths (your weaknesses!),
You didn’t get to choose.
Your child didn’t get to choose,
But God did get to choose
… and he chose you.
• Kaylee (and husband, Dan) have one daughter, Miss Bella, who lives in a world of FPIES,EoE, Delay in Gastric Emptying. Kaylee works full-time at Start Garden and fine-tunes plans to take over the world while driving to doctors’ appointments. •