Kristin and I have a standing joke…ok, it’s my joke and she just puts up with it. Since she took over the Women’s Ministry at Grace Family, I have asked if I could speak at the Beautiful Women’s Retreat. I tell her that I have a “word” that would change the life of all the women. One day, after telling the joke, I was struck with the thought, “what if she takes me up on my challenge; what would I say.” The following days were an amazing journey and it nailed me…because I have been praying the sermon for the last 24 years since Taylor and Abby were born.
Taylor and Abby are smart, beautiful, love God and love people. I am a better man because of them. They each have their own unique expression of love, life, humor, honor and respect. I often listen to them and wonder how they have accomplished so much in a short time. I am proud to be their dad. When Taylor was told in first grade that a boy liked her, my prayer for their future husbands went into a different gear. Here are the three things I prayed for them since they were very young.
That they will be valued. Value takes on many different forms but the bottom line is that I want them to be put in a place of extreme value. I raised them with that mentality – they are worth every bit of my time, finances, prayer, conversations, wisdom and blessings. They are created to make an impact and accomplish the purposes that God has for them. They are valued by Kristin and I, their family, their friends and God himself. I pray they will walk with that value in their own minds. Married or unmarried, every woman should be valued by those in her inner circle.
That they will be pursued. Every woman deserves to be pursued in a healthy, honoring way. I believe in the importance of the man code my parents instilled in me as a young man. I will be chivalrous, serve my wife, and find ways to show her that I still consider her #1 in my life. I want that for my daughters. Pursuit is not physical or aggressive – it is honor, respect and saying “You are worth it.” Even so, there is an attraction that says “above everyone else – you get my affection.”
That they will be empowered. I have yet to meet someone (man or woman) who was created without gifts and talents. Taylor has amazing creative skills and Abby has a heart of hospitality and a love for people that blows me away. Why would I ever want a relationship to diminish all that God has poured into them? Instead, I want a person to continue to unveil those qualities and put my girl in a place to flourish. They are created to lead and serve others. They should to continue to do this while joining the vision of their spouse.
My prayer for my daughters is what I strive to do for their mom. It might not make it to the Beautiful retreat, but the sermon beats in my heart each day.