It's not easy being 14.
Especially when you're a girl.
And eagerly looking forward to the upcoming Hoe Down on Saturday night.
She had no trouble picking out a blouse or borrowing a western hat from a friend. But finding the perfect denim skirt? That was another matter.
Our daughter looked up at me with pleading eyes, "Please, Mama, can we go thrift shopping for a skirt? I have the outfit all pictured in my mind. Please....?"
Oh, how I wanted to help her out.
I mean, on the one hand, it wasn't a big deal, right? Just a Saturday night event at Crystal Peaks Youth Ranch. The Ranch of Rescued Dreams. But then again, it kinda is...when you're a fun-loving, teenage girl. And it's not been so very long that I don't remember what that's like.
So I honestly wanted to do this for her. But I couldn't.
My day was more-than-filled and I couldn't see how to pull it off. I tried to soften the blow and let her down easy. It's true, earlier in the week I had told her I'd take her. But what could I do....? Sometimes plans change.
I was searching for sympathetic words for the dear girl when I heard him speak up from across the room.
"I'll take her,” he said.
That would be her dad talking.
We both glanced over at him - somewhat surprised.
"Umm...Honey? You're so sweet to offer, but we're talking thrift shopping here. And this is a work day for you. And you have your writing deadline. And...." I had so many reasons why it didn't make sense. Why he shouldn't do it.
But it was already a done-deal. He was grabbing his keys and they were going.
I watched the two of them drive off and I wondered if she'd always remember that day with her dad. If someday she'd look back at the old photos and remember searching nearly every thrift shop in our small town. The perfect blue-jean skirt finally showing up at the last consignment store.
Happy smiles and holding hands. Daddy and daughter.
It wouldn't be the first time I'd fallen in love with that man. But watching him drive away with that girl of ours had me spinning again.
Funny what love can look like.
When I met my husband, I thought love looked like a tall, dark, and handsome man. Then it became a long, passionate kiss and deep conversations that went late into the night. Later on it meant holding a new baby in our arms and tucking sleepy children into their beds.
Now love looked like a busy man taking the day off work to rescue the small dreams of a young girl. Who is quickly becoming a woman.
I often thought of them - those two whom I love so dearly - throughout that day. And I prayed that our daughter would someday find just such a man. A good man who understands the hopes and dreams of a woman. The kind of guy who's willing to look after his girl. Who cares about her heart.
Hold out, my Darling, for that kind of man. He's worth waiting for.
I pray this for all our dear daughters. For mine and for yours too.
I pray that she will wait for a good man. That she'll know what love really looks like.
I pray that he'll be one who loves Christ and loves her too.
Sacrificially and faithfully.
I pray that she will be cherished.
In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church (Eph. 5:28-29).
In His grace,