Recently I have been thinking about how special it is that my girls consider their dad a confidant, friend, and companion. They have inside jokes, conversations that are ongoing and may spring back up at anytime, and a language they alone understand. The friends that are here have that with their dads as well. One was praising her dad on the telephone because he had done something she thought was spectacular. They aren't necessarily "daddy's girls" in the traditional sense, but I see the quiet confidence that each of them has deep down inside because they know they are loved and valued.
Last night it had me thinking about my relationship with my own dad. My parents were divorced when I was nine and my dad immediately started a new family. I felt on the outside. I know that I never felt anchored, secure or truly, deeply loved just for who I am. It made a traumatic impact on the choices I made in life. I am not placing blame at my dad's feet. I know as an adult that generally he did the best that he could. I, however, am still constantly battling the wounds and scars from growing up feeling so utterly and desperately worthless.
This could have two effects on my life. The first being that I sit around drinking bitter gall of resentment - for the love I didn't feel, for the life I didn't have and for the consequences I have to endure from the actions of others. OR, I can experiencing the healing touch of a loving Father who does truly and deeply love me - so much that He gave His own Son for us. I can see that everything that happened was to draw me closer to Him. If I had skipped the pain and hurt, would I love Him as much for saving me from myself? I would surely have been a different person, and that fact fills me with gratitude for the redemptive work He's done in me, and for the love of a Heavenly Father that surpasses anything this world has to offer.
I am so thankful to know fathers that invest so much in the lives of their daughters. I know it is making a difference in their lives, their choices, and how they view the Heavenly Father. They are a picture to their children of His love in this world. But I am a testimony that even when that image is marred, the love of Christ can still be revealed.