I look at my daughter and I am amazed at the young women she is turning into. She is beautiful, talented and has a heart of gold. And yet, there are several occasions where I have to catch myself. You want to know why? I’m scared.
What father wouldn’t be scared in this day and age? There is so much violence and unrest in this world. There are things that are so readily available to our daughters that we don’t want them to see much less participate in.
But, how will our daughters have the strength to withstand the alluring temptations and peer pressure of teen years or early adulthood? I believe there are several things that we, as fathers, can do to help.
We must be intentional in our walk with God and walking in integrity. Come on men, we all know that our children are watching us.
They watch us as we put our faith into action or do nothing with it other than go to church on Sunday morning. We need to be setting the example that when we, as a dad, go through tough situations we take those straight to the throne of God asking for his guidance. They need to hear us pray continually. We can’t tell them, after they come to us asking “What do I do dad?”, to give it to God, when we, ourselves, are not doing the same. Integrity!
They should be seeing us read our Bible, even leading a family Bible Study with questions for them to answer so they can grow too. They should see how God’s Word gives you a renewed sense of strength as the scriptures come alive in your life.
Our daughters watch how we interact with their mom, whether you are married to her or divorced from her, as well as with other women. We, as men and not just as a father, should treat all women with respect. You are their first example of how men treat women.
As a dad, one of the most valued assets you have is your time. And your daughter wants some of it. Give it to her freely. Do the tea parties and the dancing with her to music you are tired of hearing because she plays it over and over and over again.
Give of your time by being willing to listen, not just hear, what your daughter is saying. Give her the respect of eye contact as well.
By doing these “little” things, which are extremely big to her, you are indeed showing her that she is loved. Go to her dance recitals, softball games, Taekwondo events or whatever extra-curricular activity she is involved in. And as she grows older she will know that you are there for her, that you support and love her. She will have the strength to come to you with her problems. For she has seen your faith in action and she trusts you.
Tell her how beautiful she is. Let her know how talented she is when she brings you something that she did herself for you to see, whether a coloring page, a puzzle she completed, or that priceless homemade Birthday card she worked so hard on.
Give her praise when she accomplishes anything. I don’t care if it’s a C on a test that she studied so hard for because she just doesn’t grasp the subject. Yes, you may be disappointed but have you given your time to actually help her understand?
But one of, if not, the most important things that we can do as a father is this…
Are you ready? Good!
Let her know where her true value lies. Tell her that her value is actually inside her. That her value is who she is on the inside and not in her appearance or what others think of her.
Your daughter has value and a purpose in life. She has been fearfully and wonderfully made by our Father. And it is our jobs as fathers to nurture, guide and love them into womanhood.
But more importantly is how you pray for your daughter! Don’t pray that she becomes the daughter you want her to be! Pray that she becomes the woman God wants her to be and then pray that God teaches you how to lead and guide into that!