Recently I bought my twelve year old daughter a promise ring and presented it to her at her favorite restaurant. It was the highlight of our many daddy-daughter dates. I will not write what I shared with her here out of respect for her feelings but it was a great talk!
I had a lady, who sitting near us, inquired about the purpose of the ring. I told her it was to serve as a reminder to my daughter that God wants her to remain sexually pure until she is married and that the most important man in her life until that day is me. She expressed her feelings about the ring with oohs and aahs and presented me with a big smile. She told me how she was glad to see me practicing something that could have come from a black and white film more than the practices of today. Something she thought her great grandfather might have done back in the 1920’s.
I understood her sentiment but I hope something as crucial as daddy’s investment into their daughters would be timeless, not reserved to any period of time. Is there anything more important I will do in the next six years than model for my daughter what her standard for a husband should be? I think not.
This means more than just modeling it in my work ethic. Men can be great at working hard but I do not know many wives or children who are impressed with their husband/daddy spending long hours at work so they can have more stuff. Work ethic is important to teach but more is needed for dads to model for their daughters.
I want to model affection for my daughter. I hug her and kiss her and tell her she is beautiful a lot. I will continue to do so even when she acts like she does not want me too as she hits the teenage years. That time where a kiss from her dad is skin to the bubonic plague. I might annoy her but it’s going to be with the annoyance of affection! She must know that she is loved by more than just my words. She needs to feel herself a princess in my eyes. That I adore her as the precious gift from God that she is to me.
I also want to model for her how her future husband should treat her by the way I treat her mom. I want her to see me doting on Christi, honoring her, respecting her. Am I perfect in this? Unfortunately, not even close but I am intentional.
Above all I want my daughter to see me as a godly man. Someone who strives to live by faith. Someone who messes up but is quick to admit it and embraces grace. A man of scripture and prayer. A man who seeks God for wisdom and direction.
There are no guarantees in how my daughter will choose to live her adult life but I trust the Lord to use my intentional investment in modeling these things for her in a way she will not easily overlook their influence when she considers a worthy mate one day.
May dads never stop investing in their daughters. May every dad be intentional in making their daughter feel the princess she is. Dads, if like me,you greatly desire your daughter to marry a godly, confident, sensitive man one day, then model for her now what her target should be.
If you think this would be helpful, please share this with dads with daughters that you know. May it be an inspiration to them as they teach their daughters what a real man looks like.