Tag Archives: Family and Relationships

“Pleeeease, Daddy!”

The following post was first published in March of 2015, but the truth is still totally relevant…please read…especially if you’re a father of little girls.


As I watched, my heart broke, my eyes flooded with tears, and I nearly had to leave the theater – that’s how I felt when I watched a particular scene in the movie Do You Believe?.

lacey Do You Belive Movie still

Credit: Still from “Do You Believe?” Movie

Alex PenaVega (of Spy Kids fame) played the role of a young woman named Lacey. Early in the movie she is shown sitting on a couch, on her cell phone, begging her father to either come to visit her, or let her spend some time with him (as I type this my eyes are beginning to water).

Totally desperate for his attention and affection, through barely contained sobbing, she cries out to her daddy, “pleeeease!

Now I’m crying. Seriously. Read on and you’ll understand why.

Not long ago, Katie (my middle daughter) called me up in the middle of the night…then called again…and again… She was at college and really, really ill.

Long story short, she wanted me to come get her…in the early hours of dark morning…before I had to get up and drive a school bus! It was an hour there, an hour back, not to mention loading her stuff, and I needed to be on a bus at 6:20 a.m.! But what was I supposed to do? She was my daughter, and through tears she asked, “Pleeease, daddy, I want to come home!”

I made record time to Bryan College.

Yesterday was a long day, from getting up early after going to bed late, to church last night. Then, at around 9:30 p.m. my little girl, Haley, asked, “Daddy, would you watch a movie with me?”

I looked down at my watch…my eyes were already heavy…I thought to myself, “It’s not going to be long before she’s grown and gone like the others.”…What’s another long day, right?

“Sure,” I replied. “What do you want to watch?”

The reason the scene in the movie got to me was that there are so many little girls out there…girls of all ages…each one willing to give anything for a little time with Daddy. And where are the dads? What is more important to them than a little girl on the other end of the line, soaking her cell phone with tears, crying “Pleeese, Daddy! Pleeeease!“?

More tears.

I like the way the New Living Translation renders Jesus’ words regarding fathers and their children…

You fathers–if your children ask for a fish, do you give them a snake instead? Or if they ask for an egg, do you give them a scorpion? Of course not! So if you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him.” – Luke 11:11-13

My heart broke as I watched Alex PenaVega’s character weep for her daddy. It broke because the scene she was acting out was all too real – there’s a lot of hurting people out there who may never find comfort in a father’s arms.

Oh, would to God that men would be men and be the heroes their little girls need! Heaven only knows how many precious lives would be spared abuse, broken marriages, and life-long addictions if only daddies would be daddies!

How wonderful it is to know that we as believers have a Father in heaven, our Abba Father, who loves us more than any earthly father ever could! But does that excuse us dads from being our little girls’ knights in shining armor? Absolutely not!

A daddy’s role is to strive to be like our heavenly Father: one who is compassionate; one who listens; one who is patient; one who is strong as an oak tree, uncompromising, yet still available for make-believe tea or midnight retrievals from the dormitory.

Men…dads…be there for your daughter; God’s collecting her tears.

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Filed under Movie review, Parenting, Relationships and Family

Reducing Relationship

I am honored to add my post here as a guest. ~madblog

Somebody didn’t get the “around 5-600 words” memo. But that’s OK, I suppose. I’m just happy madblog’s got a healthy marriage and a husband who’ll do the dishes. 😉 – Anthony Baker

Our Marriage

I have a husband who won’t let me get near the dishes lately. There are always a lot of dishes here, a lot, always. His reasons are clearly excuses.

In 31 years, we have not had Fight One over who works harder, whether he should help with the housework, or whose job it is to iron his clothes, mow the lawn or put the kids to bed. But it’s certainly not because we’re above such things.

We don’t do 50/50 here.

Did other people speak wedding vows which assigned domestic duties, and which spouse was going to be the primary breadwinner? Because to hear some people complain about the sorry thing called marriage, you would think that in their vows, they promised to model Ozzie and Harriet in their suburban 1950’s home. And they don’t want to, so away with marriage, that obsolete patriarchal engine of oppression.

We didn’t sign a contract outlining household duties or role requirements when we got married. We didn’t confuse our wedding vows with societal expectations or TV sitcoms.

Our Vows

What did we vow?

“Will you have this woman/man to be your wife/husband, to live together in holy marriage? Will you love her/him, comfort her/him, honor, and keep her/him in sickness and in health, and forsaking all others, be faithful to her/him as long as you both shall live?”

“In the name of God, I, ______, take you, ______, to be my wife/husband, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, until we are parted by death. This is my solemn vow.”

What we vowed may have been a slight variation on these words, I don’t remember. We knew what we were promising.

Notice that we both vowed the same things. There wasn’t the Housewife Version and the King of the Castle Version.

You’ll also notice that these vows are not limiting, but rather open-ended, except as to duration–until death. We were promising to love, to comfort, to be faithful. We were not promising the nuts and bolts, the how we would achieve these abstract states of existence. We were promising to live the rest of our lives committed to and committing to one relationship.

A relationship has the potential to grow and expand, and to build toward almost infinite intimacy. To live under a contract would reduce our love to a pre-ordained set of boundaries.

On another front…

During my tenure as a parent, I’ve been advised by persons who are over The Age of Eighteen, that I ought not to tell adults what to do. All the advice-granters in the world would tell me to say: OK, you’re an adult now, so I’m not allowed to tell you what to do. In return, I give up caring whether you get yourself up for church, school or work. It’s your business and I’m not going to help you anymore. You’re not my responsibility.

There is certainly truth in there. My role as a Mom changes as my child matures and I do have to increasingly step back and let him make decisions, and let him live with the way those decisions play out. I’m fine with Mr. Experience teaching her the responsibilities of adulthood. And I’m not above feeling a tiny bit of pleasure when an “I told you so” would be a legally appropriate thing to say.

Relationships, Not Contracts

But relationships are not contracts. A contract spells out what I am, and am not, responsible for. Beyond the requirements of a contract one does not go. A contract limits my actions.

When we had a young teenager who was self-willed and apparently in danger of going off the rails, the going advice was to put the relationship under contract. This is what’s expected of you, Teenager. And if you commit these crimes, here is a handy list of the corresponding consequences. Now you know what to expect.

It was an invitation not to be resisted. And because our children are creative people, it was unresisted very creatively. There was no instance in which he/she committed Offense X and therefore was liable for Consequence X. It was never that simple.

Because they don’t just want to do X and get away with it; the goal is to confound your attempts to be the authority in the first place. They want to mess with you. It’s all about the relationship, and the rebellious child knows that better than you do.

Contracts and legal agreements reduce a relationship to that which is spelled out therein. Do we really want our family relationships lived via contractual agreement?

Relationships are not contractually binding; relationships supersede contracts. My behavior toward those I love aren’t limited by the letter of the law. Or so says The Author of Relationships:

“Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves.” – Romans 12:10

“My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” – John 15:12-13

“Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for whoever loves others has fulfilled the law.” – Romans 12:8

“We love him, because he first loved us.” – 1 John 4:19

“Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.” – 1 Peter 4:8.

Relationships with human beings are infinitely more binding than legal agreements. We are accountable to love one another. To act on their behalf toward their good, even and especially when they aren’t able to appreciate the help, even and especially when we don’t think we have the strength to do it, even and especially when we feel like doing the opposite.

According to J.Budziszewski, “Love is a commitment of the will to the true good of the other person.

I want to relate to people in my life according to love and grace, not according to a reductive contractual agreement. At times, I must borrow heavily from an inexhaustible Source to fulfill my part.

I give the Adult a wake-up call because I know he has trouble hearing his alarm, on the morning after receiving the caution not to tell the Adult he should go to bed. Or go pick her up when she didn’t plan for the ride home. Overlook irritating and irritated talk. Dive in to thankless tasks. Really act as though the person is truly loved, and you couldn’t live without her, because it’s true.

Unnecessary Debate

And isn’t the debate over complementarian (no, it’s not in my spellcheck vocabulary either) vs. egalitarian marriage really a hyper-focus on this very thing? They can’t get their eyes off of that simplistically reductive 50/50.

The change agents are so proud of their enlightened egalitarian marriages. They’ve given us something new, something never seen before in the long millennia of human history: men and women, equal in marriage! Hey, congrats and thanks, guys!

I do hate to tell them that the Bible had this one a long time ago:

“Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.” – Ephesians 5:21.

And specifically on marriage:

“However, let each one of you love his wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.” – Ephesians 5:33

“Likewise, husbands, live with your wives in an understanding way, showing honor to the woman as the weaker vessel, since they are heirs with you of the grace of life, so that your prayers may not be hindered.” – 1 Peter 3:7

“Each man should have his own wife and each woman her own husband. The husband should fulfill his marital duty to his wife, and likewise the wife to her husband. The wife’s body does not belong to her alone but also to her husband. In the same way, the husband’s body does not belong to him alone but also to his wife. Do not deprive each other except by mutual consent and for a time, so that you may devote yourselves to prayer. Then come together again so that Satan will not tempt you because of your lack of self-control.” – 1 Corinthians 7:2-5

Settle what job is whose, for goodness sake, and move on!

A Final Thought

Of course when you have just now thrown away: what women are, what men are, and what you are; and you confuse Ward and June Clever with millennia-old Scriptural teaching, it makes for a little tiny bit of confusion. If you’re going to set out to right societal wrongs, it would be best to get an understanding of the issue all the way down to its foundations.

My husband does the dishes lately without explanation. He fends me off and tells me to go relax. After working all day and then chauffeuring for awhile, then going to a meeting, after working on his own writing, before going to bed much too late and getting up much too early.

It’s not because he’s invented a brand new kind of marriage. It’s not because he’s heard on Christian radio that husbands doing housework get rewarded in the bedroom. He has nothing to prove and no secret agenda. He just understands what he promised.

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Filed under Defending Traditional Marriage, Marriage, Relationships and Family

“Pleeeease, Daddy!”

As I watched, my heart broke, my eyes flooded with tears, and I nearly had to leave the theater – that’s how I felt when I watched a particular scene in the movie Do You Believe?.

lacey Do You Belive Movie still

Credit: Still from “Do You Believe?” Movie

Alex PenaVega (of Spy Kids fame) played the role of a young woman named Lacey. Early in the movie she is shown sitting on a couch, on her cell phone, begging her father to either come to visit her, or let her spend some time with him (as I type this my eyes are beginning to water).

Totally desperate for his attention and affection, through barely contained sobbing, she cries out to her daddy, “pleeeease!

Now I’m crying. Seriously. Read on and you’ll understand why.

Not long ago, Katie (my middle daughter) called me up in the middle of the night…then called again…and again… She was at college and really, really ill.

Long story short, she wanted me to come get her…in the early hours of dark morning…before I had to get up and drive a school bus! It was an hour there, an hour back, not to mention loading her stuff, and I needed to be on a bus at 6:20 a.m.! But what was I supposed to do? She was my daughter, and through tears she asked, “Pleeease, daddy, I want to come home!”

I made record time to Bryan College.

Yesterday was a long day, from getting up early after going to bed late, to church last night. Then, at around 9:30 p.m. my little girl, Haley, asked, “Daddy, would you watch a movie with me?”

I looked down at my watch…my eyes were already heavy…I thought to myself, “It’s not going to be long before she’s grown and gone like the others.”…What’s another long day, right?

“Sure,” I replied. “What do you want to watch?”

The reason the scene in the movie got to me was that there are so many little girls out there…girls of all ages…each one willing to give anything for a little time with Daddy. And where are the dads? What is more important to them than a little girl on the other end of the line, soaking her cell phone with tears, crying “Pleeese, Daddy! Pleeeease!“?

More tears.

I like the way the New Living Translation renders Jesus’ words regarding fathers and their children…

You fathers–if your children ask for a fish, do you give them a snake instead? Or if they ask for an egg, do you give them a scorpion? Of course not! So if you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him.” – Luke 11:11-13

My heart broke as I watched Alex PenaVega’s character weep for her daddy. It broke because the scene she was acting out was all too real – there’s a lot of hurting people out there who may never find comfort in a father’s arms.

Oh, would to God that men would be men and be the heroes their little girls need! Heaven only knows how many precious lives would be spared abuse, broken marriages, and life-long addictions if only daddies would be daddies!

How wonderful it is to know that we as believers have a Father in heaven, our Abba Father, who loves us more than any earthly father ever could! But does that excuse us dads from being our little girls’ knights in shining armor? Absolutely not!

A daddy’s role is to strive to be like our heavenly Father: one who is compassionate; one who listens; one who is patient; one who is strong as an oak tree, uncompromising, yet still available for make-believe tea or midnight retrievals from the dormitory.

Men…dads…be there for your daughter; God’s collecting her tears.

9 Comments

Filed under Movie review, Parenting, Relationships and Family

Where Do You Stop When You Start to Slide?

I should have known I couldn’t keep my mouth (keyboard) shut for a week. Who was I kidding? But, in order to keep things in perspective, I will make this short….no pictures or fancy editing….no thinking of just the right words to express my thoughts…I’m already taking too much time.

 Slippery Slope Argument

For years it has been argued that once some aberration (the fact or an instance of deviating…from a moral standard or moral state) is allowed to be accepted as the norm, then there exists a danger for society to continue down an ever-increasing slope. This “slippery slope” argument has been debated and maligned by others who say that rather than a slope, it is a “straw man” or “red herring.” Those who would challenge accepted cultural norms in Western society would say that it is not a “slope” into perversion, but a ladder to heaven. I tend to disagree.

I believe that the “slippery slope” argument is perfectly valid in this case, even when many of the doom-and-gloom forecasts are not entirely accurate or timely. The fact is that when one has a moral standard that is dashed at one level, it falls down to the next. Each concurrent level then bears the weight of the upper levels, thereby making each still holding that much weaker.  Eventually, all moral standards fall through the floor like a multi-storied building with no inner support.

Still, others who would differ with me say that the redefining of societal standards is a progression in understanding and tolerance. I guess that all depends on where you’re standing and how you define up, down, backwards, and forwards. If one only has “self” and “desire” as his guides, then one man’s slope could be another man’s ascent into paradise.

My Standard

The standard by which I judge morality and what is to be considered acceptable behavior is based on objective truth. I do not try to make my own truth, but rely on the Word of God to set the standard of behavior. My selfish desires based on what I want for myself may change with the direction of the wind, but God’s Word never changes. It is the highest standard of morality from which every perversion is a slide downward and away.

With that being said, I came across a news story when I was checking my email. It caused me to want to write because it struck so close to home. The story is about a lesbian who was told, as she was entering Dollywood (a theme park in Nashville), to turn her t-shirt inside out. Why? Because park officials thought it might be too offensive to other patrons in the park. What did it say? It said, “Marriage is so gay.(click here for article)

To make a long story short, the lesbian couple is going to take Dollywood to court over this. They are probably going to win, along with make a lot of money. She and she will probably go back to the park with matching t-shirts that say “Marriage is so gay…and Gay is soooo profitable.”

Where will it end?

Without getting into the whole argument over whether or not the definition of “family” should be changed to reflect male/male or female/female couples, I would just like to ask “where will it end?” This is where the “slippery slope” argument comes into play.

In the above article, Ms. Tipton said, “Families come in a wide range of definitions these days and we were with our family.” OK, so fine, that was YOUR family, Ms. Tipton; but what about other definitions? Should we just stop with gay, lesbian, and transgender families? If we are going to redefine marriage and family, as so many want to do, would it not be equally unfair to exclude every other form of perversion? In other words, if not traditional marriage, then does anything go?

Not long ago I saw a special documentary about people who were in love with inanimate objects such as – no kidding – amusement park rides (click here for more info – caution, though).  As a matter of fact, a woman married a particular ride after “courting” it for ten years and 3,000 rides. Sadly, this woman has been called “sick.” She has been diagnosed with objectophilia. But why is she sick? What is so wrong with her? She should be allowed to wear a t-shirt. “Families come in a wide range of definitions these days…”

Oh, some of you are reading this and calling me ridiculous; but seriously, where do you draw the line when you say that perversion of the norm is acceptable? Without objective standards, such as is the Bible (the document on which most moral standards in Western culture are founded), where do you go but down a slippery slope? How can you justify allowing one perversion, and not another?

My Prediction

I know, it is dangerous to make predictions, because if they never come true it make’s one a false prophet (but tell that to the ones in Hollywood). On the other hand, let me make a prediction about the future of this country. If people don’t wise up and see the fallacy of their anti-slippery slope argument, the following things will almost certainly become acceptable, if not promoted as the new norm- polygamy, polyandry, pedophilia, exhibitionism, bestiality, etc. If not, then t-shirt-wearing activists everywhere should be ashamed for their hypocrisy.

 

Romans 1:24-25 NLT – “So God abandoned them to do whatever shameful things their hearts desired. As a result, they did vile and degrading things with each other’s bodies. They traded the truth about God for a lie. So they worshiped and served the things God created instead of the Creator himself, who is worthy of eternal praise! Amen.”

 

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Filed under America, Culture Wars, Future, Relationships and Family