Father’s Day was getting close and I wanted to pick out my Dad a card and mail to him.  I began searching for just the right card.  Each and every one I picked up at the store and  began to read, I would quickly shut the card and place back where I had found it.  My thoughts were, no that’s not how I felt as a child.  Nope, that was not our life together.  So I kept searching and reading each card, still hoping to find the one that best suited me and my Dad.

Then I found one that was very fitting.  It was sweet and simple.  On the front it read…

 “There is a time for Everything.” Ecclesiastes 3

It had a picture of a daddy and his little girls feet hanging over the edge of a dock overlooking the lake.  This was a picture that I remembered us sharing when I was little.  We would walk up and down the dock at my grandparents lake house in East Texas and share stories together.  He would always say “you know I love you don’t you.” I always shook my head yes.

Then I opened up the card and read the inside.  “a time to tell you thank you for being my Dad.” It was very short, sweet and simple and exactly what I wanted to say.  I added my own words inside and shared how much I loved our days at the lake together.

Let me share just a little bit of my story as a child.  My Mom and Dad fell in love at a very early age.  She was only 15 years old and she just knew he was the one.  He was 5 years older than her.  He asked her to marry him and she said yes!  The laws in Texas back in the 70′s required that you had to be at least 16 years of age to marry.  So, they went to Hugo, Oklahoma where it was legal to marry at the age of 15.  My parents had a lot of ups and downs during their first few years together.

She was so excited when she found out she was pregnant with me at 16.  She always tells me that all she ever wanted was a baby to love.  She delivered me on her 17th birthday.  She says I was the best present she could have ever asked for.

My parents had a lot of rocky things going on in their marriage and they tried to make it work.  But, before I was 2, they divorced.  A little later my Dad came to pick me up from my Grandparents house and said he was taking me out for some ice cream.  I went missing for about a week and my Mom had no idea where I was and she was worried sick.  She prayed and hoped that I would be found.  Thankfully her prayers were answered and I was found and placed safely back in her arms.

Things happened between them that I could not have helped.  I was just a child.  (the enemy meant this for harm and a feeling of abandonment set in on my heart at such a young age)

 I remember as a child always wanting to be a daddy’s girl. So many of my friends were and they even had little silver bracelet’s saying Daddy’s girl and wore them proudly to school.  I would look at their arms and long to be able to wear a bracelet too.  Oh how I longed for that relationship.

I saw my dad here and there as a child but we were never really close.  A few years ago I wrote my Dad a letter forgiving him for not being there for me as a child when I needed him most.  Since then we have had such healing and restoration in our relationship and I feel closer to him now more than ever. He calls me his little girl and I call him Daddy.

My mom just sent me a text on June 14th and it read “38 years ago today I was on my way to Oklahoma to marry your Dad.  Time flies! So glad I did. You were so worth it!”

I did not even know the date of their wedding.  It had been so long ago and I was so little.  This began to stir up feelings in my heart that I did not even know were still there.  Then my heart began thinking of how things could have been so different if we lived in a perfect world and they could have stayed together.  How things might have been, you know… different.  But we live in a fallen world and daddy’s sometimes leave and things do not always work out.

Sometimes we may not understand everything.  That night as I sat and thought more about it, my heart began to heal and sweet cleansing tears poured down my cheeks.  I did not even know that I had this all bottled up inside.  I have experienced kairos, freedom classes and healing of my heart in many ways, and I did not even realize that was tucked in there. It felt so good to let it all out.  I expressed my heart to God and He whispered softly to me as I cried and I felt Him hold me close.

You may have longed for a Daddy’s girl bracelet and to have that closeness just as I did as a child. This past Father’s Day may have been a little bittersweet for you too.  Maybe like me you have always dreamed of that Daddy’s girl closeness with your earthly Father.  Or maybe you felt sadness because your child’s baby daddy is not in the picture.

Let me encourage you and share with you what God whispered softly to my heart. It was something that I already knew; but to hear Him say it melted my heart and I hope that you can feel it too.

I am a Daddy’s girl and always have been.  My Daddy in Heaven has always been here for me. He never left me alone.  He always has and always will love me and YOU!

You are a Daddy’s girl too and always will be.

Daddy’s little girl paints the world with her little fingers.  Daddy’s little child breathes new life for the morning time for me.  Though we’re apart, her thoughts follow me.  She smiles with the dawn and she radiates a glow around her halo.  When she plays, Daddy smiles, on a summer day Daddy smiles.  Daddy’s little girl ties her ribbon around my heart.  (from the movie uptown girls)

 Every story has an end. But in life every ending is just a new beginning.  – Dakota Fanning

Written by Salina Duffy