Archives For Prized Possession

Recently some colleagues of mine asked me for my list of the top 10 things I wanted my daughter to know. The context is that I work with all women at an anti-human trafficking non profit called Saving Innocence. Check us out to learn more.

Their context is that they are inundated with poor examples of Dad’s and men in general. (I’m saying this very nicely here) They are walking every day with young girls who are dealing with the deep wounds of absentee Dad’s as well as those men who would buy and sell girls for sex. I think they needed a reminder of how things should be….

Click HERE to view a short video which tells the story of what I’m doing with Saving Innocence.

Me and Britt after a lunch date in DTLA

(She works at the Staples Center)


10 Things I want my Daughter to know

  1. I love you with my whole heart, unconditionally. Nothing you will ever do or say will ever change that.
  2. You are my “Prized Possession” (the most valuable part of my life)
  3. I will always be there to fight for you, defend you, empower you & protect you. I am available for both the fun and the hard conversations. I am on call 24 hours a day as the need arises.
  4. Your worth is not determined by the outside world, boy’s, media, or other people. But rather by your creator who is the only one who gets to establish your value. And He is crazy about you.
  5. You are a daughter of the King of the universe which makes you royalty and an heir to the kingdom. Step into that reality, live like you believe it.
  6. Don’t give any person in your life, especially boys, a voice in your life who don’t believe #5 is true and treat you as such.
  7. Be careful who you follow or listen to. You are being lied to on a daily basis regarding who you are and who you are supposed to be.
  8. Authentic Beauty is on the inside, not the outside. This is counter cultural.
  9. The treadmill of life is exhausting. Rest in who you are and know that you are enough.
  10. When looking for a man, find someone who understands all of the above.

I’m sure I could come up with a few more, but this is what came off the top of my head and which I have tried to live out over the course of her lifetime.

Here is your call to action!

First: what is on your list of things you want to make sure your daughter knows? Make a list!

Second: Show your daughter your list! Once I finished this list I sent it to my daughter and daughter in law to make sure they knew how much I loved them and make sure they knew the things I wanted them to know!

Daughter Brittany on the left and Daughter in Law, Katy on the right. 

I’m a blessed man!


Keep up the great work dads! You can do this!




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Phil Withdraws!

Alan Smyth —  July 16, 2017 — Leave a comment

By any measure, Phil Mickelson is one of the all-time great golfers. AND, of his five “majors” that he has won, the U.S. Open is the only one left to win. That is why the recent breaking news of Phil pulling out of this past U.S. Open is such a big deal.

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Check out Phil’s Wikipedia page and marvel at his golf accolades…. His 42 PGA victories puts him in rarified air for sure.


Among his 5 major victories, he has won the Masters three times!

** FOR USE AS DESIRED, PHOTOS OF THE DECADE ** FILE - Phil Mickelson celebrates after winning the Masters golf tournament with a nine-under-par at the Augusta National Golf Club in Augusta, Ga., in this April 11, 2004 file photo. (AP Photo/Dave Martin, File)


Only 8 other men have won more tour events than Phil. This is what he does and he is very good at it. He is in 8th place all time for “Major” wins yet the U.S. Open has eluded him thus far. As he is getting older, one has to wonder why he would withdraw from this important tournament?  Why would he not show up for work that day? Why would he pull a “no show?” How many more opportunities will he have to win a major and especially the coveted U.S. Open?


One thing that Phil has always stood for is his family. I don’t know the man personally, but he has always projected a strong love for his wife and kids. It is refreshing to see a high-profile athlete with such an obvious love and attention to this family.


The answer to the riddle of why he pulled out of this year’s U.S. Open is simple…. His family comes first. His daughter’s High School graduation conflicted with his tournament tee time. He chose his daughter over his job that day. He said “no” to a possible huge pay day in favor of his daughter.  He gave up making memories for himself in favor of making memories with his daughter. He gave up the spotlight on himself and placed it on his daughter.


I’m not sure how difficult of a decision this was for Phil, but I’m guessing not very. I’m guessing this was pretty much a “no brainer.” And that makes me a fan of Phil Mickelson! Thanks Phil for teaching the rest of us what it looks like to value family over career!

Question: When was the last time you have sacrificed something big for the sake of your family? Has your daughter seen you place her needs above your needs lately?

What is your “U.S. OPEN” that you need to walk away from in order to demonstrate your love, commitment and presence in your daughter’s life?

Let’s wrestle with that for a little while….

Press On!




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Real Talk

Alan Smyth —  May 22, 2017 — Leave a comment

In our book Prized Possession, we compiled a number of voices to form one strong message. We hear from Dad’s who have done it well and Daughters who have been loved well from great Dad’s. They both have a great perspective to learn from. Additionally, in between each chapter we insert a few nuggets entitled “Real Talk.” In our “Real Talk” segments, we hear from a variety of young women who vulnerably share a brief thought from their perspective.


Between chapter 2 and chapter 3, we find this section of “Real Talk”

Real Talk

“As society and culture takes its toll on girls today, girls begin to lose a sense of their own value. It’s a painful loss and often leads to a search for painkillers. Alcohol and drugs are often used to numb the pain. Girls compromise their God-given value to meet the expectations of boys who can’t possibly understand the beautiful treasures God has created them to be. “If I only give my boyfriend what he wants,” they think, “then I’ll matter. I’ll be something, I’ll belong.” The problem is, such a pattern reduces a girl to her ability to perform and her willingness to have sex. Such a degradation of her identity will act as a huge wall against her understanding of who God has created her to be and the value He, as her Father, has placed on her life.”


Here is what I heard from the young lady who shared her “Real Talk.”

  • It’s hard being a girl
  • Girls are de-valued
  • There is pain we seek to numb
  • We compromise for the sake of a boy’s approval
  • I want to matter and belong
  • We are reduced to our performance
  • Our understanding of who God made us to be is under attack

 A pretty strong message indeed. As Dad’s, we need to not only be aware of how many of our girls think in this regard, but we need to be willing to have a strong counter cultural message  against these lies. We are in a battle every day for the wholeness of our kids. Dads are needed to be present and engaged more than ever.

We would love to send you a copy of our book. It has all kinds of inspiring and equipping messages from a variety of voices. You can pick it up from our website. CLICK HERE.

Stay at it Guys!



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A Huge Announcement

Alan Smyth —  April 1, 2017 — 8 Comments

This is a Re-Post from an ealier BLOG. There are lots of new followers to our blog since our book was first relased. We want to make sure everyone get the back story and an opportunity to get one.



We have reached a milestone in the life of this “little project.” It started nearly 26 years ago when my daughter Brittany was born. As I stumbled around hoping to be a great Dad for my daughter, I learned a few things through “On the job training.” Then, my entire adult life working for Young Life has given me a front row seat into the lives of adolescents and their struggles.

Long story short, I felt compelled to record my thoughts and experiences of being a dad to my daughter. I felt led to record them all into one place and make them available to whoever might be interested. Further, I felt that getting input from dozens of other Dads, daughters and Young Life leaders would provide a unique collection of content.

Never really knowing where this was all going, I am happy to announce that the project which I spearheaded and collaborated with many others has been turned into a book. And that book is available for consumption starting right now! Let this blog post signify the release of a book I have entitled “Prized Possession.” You will have to read chapter two in order to understand where this title came from.


Kristy Fox is a huge part of this project and her female perspective has been an invaluable component to the conversation. My voice is strong as a Dad who raised a daughter. However, her voice is strong from a woman’s perspective and has provided a strong influence. She is someone who has been intimately involved in the lives of adolescent girls for over 20 years. Kristy has contributed an important chapter in this book as she speaks about what girls are battling every day. She has also been a sounding board for the rest of the chapters as I compiled them. My own daughter, Brittany, has also contributed a chapter from her perspective.

Additionally there are dozens of veteran Dads who have shared their insights on what they did and how they approached raising their daughters. Maybe the best part of the book tho, is a chapter written by a compilation of testimonies from post teen age girls who turned out great. I asked them “what did your dad do?” “What impacted you?” You will hear from awesome women what their dad did well. You will want to steal what you hear them say.

We have no real commercial goals for this book. Well, I’d love to break even on it if I can. Beyond that, I have no idea. The point of this project was not to become a “best seller” and make a lot of money. The point was to gather important voices and share important insights on a very important topic. My hope is that this book becomes a resource for Dads who are looking for a little encouragement and practical help for the sake of a healthy daughter who gets what she deserves. It is irrelevant whether 1 or 1 million people read this book. I am just doing what I believe I was asked to do by pulling it all together.

If you care to order this book, hit the banner below. There is also a button on our website to be used in purchasing the book as well. If you believe this topic is as important as I do, then I would ask you to forward this e-mail to everyone you know,  “share” it on your facebook, “tweet” it on twitter and ask people you know to check it out on our website. I want a lot of Dads to participate in this conversation because I believe there is some greats stuff on the pages which will make a difference in the lives of little girls. Thanks for your help in spreading the word!

May God bless you in your parenting and may God use the words recorded in this book to empower Dads and bless the little girls they love.

Bless you

Alan Smyth

Click the banner below if you want to buy our new book. It is available in soft cover, hard cover and  e-book.

It is also available at our website CLICK HERE to get the book and other fun Dad Stuff!

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Think it Over

Alan Smyth —  June 27, 2016 — Leave a comment

In our book Prized Possession, we pose some very important questions to consider. Below are a couple of them.



“Girls are created, different than boys, to admire their fathers. Girls are made to be adored by their fathers and to adore their fathers. Their hearts are shaped for this and there is no replacing it.”

“This is the primary lens they can see God the Father through. Without a dad, God is distant and absent. Girls see God the way they see their dad. If a girl has a disinterested dad, she will sense that God is disinterested in her. If a girl senses their dad is disappointed in them, they will sense that God is also disappointed in them.”

Some questions: Dads, did you realize that your daughter will view God as she views you? Did you realize that your actions & attitudes are the personification of God in her life?

Would it change your interactions with your daughter if you thought your daughters potential faith might possibly be connected to what kind of Dad you are?

If you thought that were true, would that change your effort level as a Dad? Might that change how present you are in your daughter’s life?


Think it over Einstein!

Alan Smyth

PS: The above quotes are found in Chapter 1 of the book “Prized Possession.”

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I recently had a great conversation with a friend regarding the title of our book, “Prized Possession.” Without yet reading the book, he offered that the title “rubbed him the wrong way.” He went on to describe how he sees his daughter as much more than a “thing” ie. A “possession.” To which I said “ABSOLUTLY.” I happened to have a copy of the book handy and I directed him to a few key parts in the book which I will now direct you to.



From an opening page of the book:

“Prized Possession” from the Bible

“And we, out of all creation, became His prized possession”

James 1:18b, NLT

Prized Possession from the Dictionary:

 “The biggest thing in your life, the one thing you couldn’t imagine your life without”

“Something you care for deeply above all else”

“It could be anything you cherish close to your own heart and can be worth millions or worth nothing to someone else”

Excerpt from Chapter 2

When I think of the word “possession,” I do not think of it as an inappropriate, overbearing, “possessive” ownership that isn’t healthy. Rather, I think of possession in a loving, protective way that defines my place and role in Brittany’s life, and hers in mine. “Prized Possession” is one that I hold above all else and cherish with all of my heart. It’s a treasure with deep, intrinsic value. After all, Brittany is “mine,” because God saw fit to entrust her to me as her dad. She is my responsibility and my daughter, and I would defend and protect her to the death.

Excerpt from Chapter 8 (written by my daughter)

“What are you?”

“Prized Possession!”


“Don’t you forget it!”

When I consider the woman I am today, I realize that this small conversation played an integral part in shaping me into the person I am right now. These four lines represent a life-long conversation that has taken place between my dad and me. I never realized how powerful these words were or how lucky I was to hear them on a regular basis. My dad began this conversation before I could speak in complete sentences or comprehend what meaning it carried. These words were some of the first words added to my lexicon. To this day, there is only one answer when my dad asks the simple question, “What are you?” Without any hesitation I reply, “Prized possession.” “And…” “Don’t you forget it!” It’s second nature. It’s who I am. It’s who I will always be.

My friend came back to me, gave me a hug and said, “I get it.”

I wanted to relay this experience in case any of you had the same question. Obviously the book goes into much more explanation, but this should get you started.

I’d love to know what you thought about the book after you’ve had a chance to read it. Praying it makes a difference for many. Could be a great “Fathers’s Day” gift.


Bless you

Alan Smyth

Click the banner below if you want to buy our new book. It is available in soft cover, hard cover and e-book.

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