My daughter, Hannah, just celebrated her 16th birthday this week. Can’t believe she’s that old. Can’t believe I’M that old!
On the afternoon of her birthday, Heather and I stood in the driveway and waved goodbye as Hannah went for her first solo drive with her new license. Granted, it was just a 5 minute spin around the subdivision, but it was still momentous. I’m also looking forward to taking her out on a special “daddy-daughter-date” tonight. I plan to treat her the way we pray her future husband will treat her. Hannah needs to know how special she is in the eyes of her Bridegroom, Jesus. Any future suitor will need to treat her with the same honor and respect.
Whether it’s sending Hannah on her first solo drive or showing her what to expect from a future husband, Heather and I are preparing her for an important step … LEAVING home. God’s way of perfect love involves this important step. If Hannah is to marry someday, she will need to follow the guidance of Eph. 5:31, which teaches that she’s to “LEAVE her mother and father.” Although we’d love to hold tightly to Hannah all her life, we also know that it’s our parental duty to prepare her to “leave” us. We want her to be able to enjoy the same marital bliss that we enjoy in God’s way.
Yes, we know that one day Hannah will “leave” us in the sense of putting a spouse as a higher priority than us. Her 16th birthday is a clear reminder that such a day may not be too far away. Yes, that day will certainly bring a few tears of sadness that the past is gone … our little girl has grown up. But, it will be a day filled with love, comfort, hope and joy in the Lord. HIS perfect way, the way HE loves us first, will also be the way for our little girl to enjoy being a woman who lives out the blessings of marriage in God’s way.