Strength from A Daughter’s Face

Where does your energy come from? Whether you’re nursing a newborn or wrangling through homework with your middle-school student, how do you manage to be there for your child or children?

My daughter was scheduled to be delivered Thursday, March 24 at 8 a.m. by C-section. She decided to suprize us early by sending my wife into contractions at 3 a.m. and to the operating room at 5:30 a.m. I don’t have to tell other dads out there how miraculous your wife/partner is during delivery. If you’re not a believer in God before witnessing such a feat, I’d gamble that such an event will turn you on the spot, or at least make you think twice.

An understatement would be to say that my wife was nervous about the delivery, or as she put it:  surgery. I must say that the C-section delivery was no less miraculous than a vaginal delivery.

We expected to have a girl. My wife likes to plan so we asked the ultrasound technician to point out the sex. I already have a son, and so the news of expecting a daughter came as a mixed bag. I knew what it was like raising a boy. I’m not saying a didn’t want a girl, but I was able rough house with my son. We could have similar “boy” interests. I wasn’t real pumped to fill a play room with Barbies and dolls. We’ve come a long way with with gender equality, but as unfortunate as it is, women have to endear so much more. Plus, somewhere deep inside of me as I looked at the big picture, there were the facts of how menacing boys can be to a young woman. I couldn’t think too far down the road. Fears. All fears.

Then I met her. My daughter stole my heart when they handed her to me. Tears welled up inside, and I could feel the radiant feminine beauty of her being. I never once wished for anything else.

I don’t have to tell you newborn babies are tiresome. They are demanding. They expect to get fed every two to three hours. Their dirty diapers are in the double digits. Now, I went into this knowing what to expect, so maybe that was it. Maybe it was the fact that my new born daughter was such a peaceful pea pod with a hunger signal that was the puckering of her mouth. But the energy I felt when I looked her in the eyes came from somewhere else.

I was exhausted. My wife was on a pain management routine and bedridden. We had been up since three in the morning. But when I stared at this baby face of beauty, God sent His Spirit to fill me with service. I was at my wife’s side, willing to do anything for her and our new baby. And I had nothing to do with it. I give Him all the credit.

God fills me up with this Spirit to do the next right thing. When I ask him where I should be, He steers me to wiping down the bathroom when I want to sit down. He drives me to give words of strength to my amazing wife when we’re both ready to collapse. He walks me through cleaning the kitchen when dishes are piled and I’m ready to scream. As long as I keep asking this question and wait for the response, He guides me with a light of inspiration on what to do next.

Keep in mind this is never really what I want to do. I want to get a bunch of work done to stock pile money. I want to plan the next house project. I want to exercise my body to stay fit. I want to practice the guitar or sit and read. But many times, God says to put others in my family first. My time will come. Those other things–and they are just that–will come.

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