Current research is shouting that dads are instrumental to a daughter’s development. The way you live, love and lead will speak powerfully to your daughter about what true manhood looks like. We’ve all heard that girls marry men who remind them of their fathers. So, no pressure here but you need to be the type of man you want your daughter to marry.
I’m only 9 years into the journey of raising a daughter so I have to watch and learn from others who have walked further in these shoes. Here’s what I think is the number one issue…Be a strategic and intentional dad. The bottom line is this:
• You have to make investments in their development.
• You have to create ‘teachable moments’.
• You have to spend time. You have to lay some other things aside.
• You can’t assume they will become godly women.
• You can’t assume they know how they should be treated by a man.
Consequently, you must take action. You must engage and talk with strategic intent. Create the moments when you talk about being a lady, honoring God, living in purity, finding identity in Christ, being a complete person without a boyfriend… the list goes on, but you get the picture.
Here are two brief stories from men who have been strategic and intentional with their teenage daughters this summer. I’m cheering like crazy for these guys. They did it! They invested time (and money) in their daughters and they will surely see it pay off one day.
“As you know, I wanted to celebrate Danielle becoming a young adult and what it means to be a young lady. We were incredibly blessed to do this in Paris. I made reservations for a sunset cruise down the River Seine. It was awesome as we sat next to each other watching all the wonderful sites of Paris at dusk. Just before dessert, I gave her Purity Ring to her. It is engraved “True Love Waits” with 1 Timothy 4:12. I told her I wanted her to wear it to give her strength and to remember this very special time. And when she gets married she could give it back to me until she has a daughter to pass it on to.
I would recommend this experience to ALL Dads to do if they don’t do anything else. Even if it is just packing a snack and having a picnic for this celebration.
You know Mike, I fall short in more than I like to admit to… however, I knocked this one out of the ball park!!! This is the coolest thing I have ever done as a Dad. Not the Paris trip, the celebration!”
Another friend just got back from a week long adventure experience with his teenage daughter at JH Ranch in California. I enjoyed hearing about their experience. It was awesome to know that they had studied God’s Word together each day as they experienced His creation and had deep father/daughter talks. They’ve even challenged each other to continue holding each other accountable for being in the Word daily. My favorite part was hearing about one high-rope event where they were laughing so hard they had to keep starting over.
Guys, I understand these are both extreme cases. You don’t have to have a purity conversation in Paris or engage God’s Word with your daughter on a ranch in California. You can create experiences that are much closer and less expensive. The key questions are these… Will you be strategic and intentional? Will you lay aside other things to focus on this relationship and invest deeply in your daughter? Is it more costly to invest in her now or to try to pick up the pieces later?