In an earlier post, I left with a ‘ps’ in which I named the act of raising my teenage daughter The Semi-Interactive-Spectator-Sport.
Tonight, I just wanted to expound upon that a bit.
If you look at the name I gave this wonderful job I get to do, you can probably guess at how I define my role in my daughter’s life. It’s pretty simple, actually. I watch her now. That’s it. That, and every so often, offer some advice, or tell her what I know about God (which isn’t much), and encourage her to find out for herself.
There are other things I do, but for the most part, the name I have given this joy is self-explanatory. I am a spectator in my daughter’s life, at least from my perspective. Sure, there was a time (it seems so long ago now) where I was much more than that. I was her protector, her guide, her enforcer, and her feeder. My job so long ago was as a teacher, a healer, and a life-keeper.
Yet even then, I was also a spectator. That part of this life as a father will never change, and now, that part is the greater part of my relationship with my daughter. And oh how I truly enjoy being this spectator. I marvel at her, and whenever I remember her as the child who couldn’t live if someone didn’t keep her alive (as all infants and toddlers are), I marvel even more. She is the miracle of my life, she is life, she is my joy.
I would never have known what a Father’s love was if not for her. And this love is a greater love than any other I have ever known. The fierce desire to protect her is always alive. The desire to give her everything I have or know is always with me. The desire to simply watch her and enjoy her as she grows up is always in my heart.
It doesn’t matter what she does, or how she does. She is my child, and I love her. I always will. Nothing can ever separate her from the love of her father. Now I get it, I think. I get why God loves us so, and it is a crime to think that He would ever hate even a single one of us, no matter what we did.
Maybe we see as through a glass darkly because all these people we want to judge aren’t our children. Maybe we hate because they aren’t our son, or our daughter. I don’t know. Maybe we are just jealous of other’s position with our Father in Heaven.
All I know is, I love my daughter, and God is teaching me how He loves me and everyone else through that. It is enough for me.