I met with a young woman in her early 20s this month. Her words have stuck in my head. She said “I had a pretty strained relationship with my dad – because of that I am needing to learn what it looks like to have an actual relationship with my Heavenly Father . I never learned to be real, honest, vulnerable and open with my own father – because of that it is tough for me to learn what that looks like with God and others.”
Your daughter is watching you more than you may know. Your words and your actions speak volumes to her.
This is not meant to make you feel guilty, or pressured, like a failure, or like the job ahead of you as a dad is impossible. To the contrary, I would love to encourage you that it is not too late to try. What was so very interesting to hear as she continued to speak was the desire within her to reconnect with her dad, to renew that relationship, to engage and not just ignore it or walk the other way. She was very willing not just to forgive her father for some of the lapses in his parenting but also to be the one to want to help build the bridge to reconnection. If it seems like you have missed it in parenting – it’s not too late. Help build that bridge!