Often I wonder about the future of my daughters. Yes, there are four of them slowly embarking on the journey of teenage bliss. In my mental wanderings, I try to imagine their gateway into adulthood. Will they go to college? Will they find a job? Will they get married? When will I meet my grandbabies? It’s not as if my dreams of late will guide their decisions; my teenagers can barely tolerate me, now. But, there are things that a mother will pass along to her daughters. These things have probably been ingrained long before I ever started imagining my daughters away from home.
When my baby girls were still in pink onesies, I was immersed in contemplation on the relationship between man and woman. The Beginning was the only logical place I could possibly begin my own study on the matter. I found joyful tasks prepared for the mothers of God’s creation, a freeing partnership of headship and submission, and a life lived as one flesh with a sacrificial spouse. What could be better than that? I found delight and happiness with a husband that loved me. I had purpose given by my Creator. My daughters would learn to love these great gifts their Creator gave them as well!
Right in the middle of my daydreams for my girls, I had a conversation with a friend who felt very strongly that a woman should do everything for herself. She should be self-reliant, independent, strong, and smart. I couldn’t totally disagree; after all, this is the sought after model of womanhood these days. She continued by listing the ways in which modern women were weak; some couldn’t pump gas, some didn’t balance their checkbook, some didn’t even have a credit card, and some fell apart unless a man was in their life. My friend looked me dead in the eyes and whispered, “My daughter will never be one of those.” I learned later in this conversation that her own mother was abandoned by her father, leaving the poor girls to fend for themselves. And, by golly, they did.
But the thrust of this discussion has stuck with me. My friend was bound and determined to teach her daughter that there was no need for those stinking men. She passed her pain and abandonment to her daughters, as a reaction to this terrible exception in God’s creation. This is not the only exception that one might experience. Guilt, shame, suffering, and death: all these exceptions to God’s beautiful world are the result of sin.
The good, true, and beautiful things of God have been turned upside down in our shadowed valley of death. There have turned out to be exceptions to every glorious gift of God. The Garden of Eden looks like thorns, labor, drought, and burnout. Fruitful offspring looks like infertility and abortion. One flesh looks like adultery, divorce, and aloneness. And this is what we teach our kids to expect? I am sick and tired of tiptoeing around this broken world just to end up glorifying the exceptions.
Daughters, do not be caught up with the exceptions in God’s world. Jesus was unfruitful, a slave, dry, burned-out, infertile, a murderer, a cheater, and alone; not you. He filled up every exception with His beautiful holy blood. So for you, the world we live in will be restored, brand new. I know you can’t see it yet. But keep watching and waiting, and don’t just settle for those glorified exceptions.