A letter to my daughter

Dear Adele,

You turned 4 months old yesterday – it seems like yesterday I held you in my arms for the first time and all you did was cry, and then proceed to poop all over me. It’s true what they say about parenthood; it is the most stressful blessing ever.

Each day I’m reminded of God’s generosity towards us. From our struggle to conceive (although very small compared to others), to our fear of raising a girl, to our joy in our lives now lived with you. You’ve adjusted well to our lives… and I would say that we’ve adjusted too.

I love you sweet cheeks. I never want you to doubt that. But I need you to know two additional things: 1) I love your mother very much. I will always love her more than I love you and will try my hardest to demonstrate my love for her in unique ways that will probably embarrass you… 2) I love our God more. I need you to know this. I need you to see this in how we live our lives. You may never come to faith – and that has been something that has haunted me every moment I open my Bible; every time I pray; every time we pray with you before (or sometimes as) you sleep. This being said, you will be given every opportunity to see the glory of God displayed in our family. You may not want anything to do with faith or Jesus or his gospel – but I’ve committed to reveal and live the gospel message out in front of you. My prayer is that you’ll never be able to say that you never saw the gospel of grace displayed before you.

I want our lives to be bent towards the gospel… maybe even walk with a limp like Jacob did after wrestling with God. I want you to know what matters most to us – but not to assume that we’re always going to be doing that. Sometimes the things that matter most to us aren’t what they should be. Sometimes they’re pagan. Sometimes they’re self-seeking. Sometimes they’re self-exalting… and when you see that, I’m praying that by God’s grace they are exposed for what they are; sin. I’m praying that we will be open and honest about our failures with you and quickly change course so that you might again see the gospel of grace lived out.

Adele – maybe that’s what I’m praying against: hypocrisy. This is so plaguing us as followers of Jesus. I’m praying that as a family, we are so intimate with the Father, that the Holy Spirit will quickly draw to our attention our callousness. May we be a family that as often as possible we make most of Jesus, his cross, and a life lived for him.

So, today, on your four month birthday (man I feel like a Jr. High relationship counting how many months we’ve been together…) I’m praying for you, for us. I’m praying that we would not be like our fathers, “a stubborn and rebellious generation, a generation whose heart was not steadfast, whose spirit was not faithful to God” (Ps. 78:8). And I’m praying that you will one day embrace the most sacred, glorious fact I’ve ever know: Christ has died, Christ has risen, Christ is coming again – and this Christ loves me, loves your mother, and loves you too. This love compels us to live differently, and my hope is that you live that way too.

Your daddy