Discovering Biblical Manhood in Raising a Girl

I have somewhat made a commitment to myself that I would visit the subject of biblical manhood on my blog, because I believe God has given me a passion to talk about it, study it, and live it.

I had a thought this morning that I believe God blessed me with. As I was getting ready for work, I had the opportunity to sit down and eat breakfast with my daughter, Karis. I don't always get to do this, because many times I'm up too early. She likes to sleep in already! As we were eating I turned some music on. She is a big fan of Owl City, and so I thought it would be fun to turn some Owl City on and have some background music to our breakfast. My wife was outside, going for a morning walk, so it was just me and my little girl. Karis loves to dance! She doesn't just bop her head to the music, she really likes to bust some moves. Not only that, she loves to "ballroom" dance, as I like to label it. She and I will sometimes ballroom dance to slower songs, and I will twirl her around and sometimes lift her up. She absolutely loves it! This morning, one of her favorite songs came on. Its called "Saltwater Room" by Owl City. Its one of his slower songs. As soon as the song came on, Karis wanted to get out of her seat and dance with me. So we did, and it was fun. We ballroom danced. I twirled her around. I picked her up and spun her. It was a beautiful moment.

A thought came to me while we were dancing. Like I said, I think God put this thought in my mind. I pictured myself as an old man, perhaps in my 80s. At the same time, I pictured looking at Karis as an older lady in her 50s, perhaps having kids and grandkids of her own. In seeing this, I thought of how I would feel looking back at moments like this morning, when she was just a sweet little 2 1/2 year old wanting to dance with her daddy. I thought about how my heart might just ache a little, wishing that I could be a young father again with the opportunity to pick my little girl up, spin her around, and put a smile on her face. I immediately thought, "this is a moment that I need to treasure". At the same time, I thought, "I need to take advantage of every opportunity I have to show my little girl how much I love her", even if it means doing something that the world may deem as less than manly. That means tea parties, Dora the Explorer marathons, painted toenails, and ballroom dancing will be a big part of my life, at least until she moves on to older things. Then, those things will be a big part of my life.

When I revisit passages like Deuteronomy 6, I reminded of my responsibility as a parent. I have the responsibility to teach my children about God, who He is, and what He expects. Deuteronomy 6:7 says, "you shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise". Its not enough for me just to simply tell Karis who God is, I believe that I also must teach her about God by the way that I live my life. Part of that verse says, teach "when you walk by the way". It is crucial that I take every opportunity to pour the love of Christ into her. Sometimes that comes in the form of ballroom dancing on the kitchen floor. I truly believe that is what true biblical manhood looks like. I don't say that to toot my own horn. There are many opportunities that I do not take advantage of. God reminds me of those. I am praying that I let go of my selfishness and keep myself open to having moments like the one this morning that I had with my daughter, so that I raise her to God's glory! I still have much to learn!

I'm thankful for what God teaches me about manhood through raising my daughter. I pray this is an encouragement to some parents out there. I know a lot of good, biblical parents who sometimes read this blog. Thank you! Continue pouring God's love into your children! You are an encouragement and example to me!