You’ve Got This Girl!

Although this weekend is Mother’s Day (and I’m clearly not a mother), my mind weighs heavily on this whole thing called parenthood. If I’m being very honest, I feel guilty at times for bringing kids into a world full of so much pain, struggle, and disappointment. Of course, being a dad has been my biggest blessing in this life, but then I feel selfish if my joy comes at a cost to my kids.
This has hit me especially hard in recent weeks, given that my older daughter is finishing her senior year in high school, and she’s lost so many of the amazing experiences that are supposed to go along with that rite of passage. She had her last day on campus without knowing it was her last day ever. Her final season of Track & Field? Gone. Her Senior Prom? Gone. Her Senior Trip to Chelan? Gone. A normal, in-person graduation ceremony? Probably gone, too. And those are just a few of her many, many losses. In the big picture, I know she will be fine and that many people deal with far greater tragedies. Still, my father’s heart breaks for her.
I love my daughter so much. She has changed me for the better, in ways that I never dreamed were possible. But I have to wonder, are those things I love about fatherhood somehow meaningless if my girl suffers just for having the misfortune of living during a time when so many good things are taken away? How do I tell her, “God has a plan for you,” when her world is crashing down?
It is truly soul-crushing to see your child in pain and losing so much. Yet, despite a few breakdowns, I must say that she’s handling it much better than I would have at her age. And what helps me a little is knowing that God is a Dad, too; He knows my heartbreak, and then some. He gave up His only Son, who willingly lost everything for the sake of the world He loved so much:
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. (John 3:16).
Jesus could have put a stop to His pain and suffering, but He chose to go through it anyway, just so the people He loved would not have to:
He made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death—even death on a cross! (Philippians 2:7-8)
I’m in awe of the fact that God gives His people so much choice and control when it comes to bringing a child into this world. Yet God is still the one doing the creating, even though we play a key role in the process. My wife and I gave life to our daughter, as they say, but really God was the One who did all of the live giving. And He did it on purpose. He created her for a reason and she will understand it one day:
You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they were created and have their being. (Revelation 4:11).
Sweet daughter, God meant for you to be here. To paraphrase Esther 4:14 and apply it your situation, “And who knows but that you have come to [this circumstance] for such a time as this?” You will do great things for God and His people. You’ve got this girl!
Troy Burns