Aside from the assumption that my daughter (yes, I also have daughters) is incapable of good judgement and protecting herself and her standards, this ridiculous concept imagines my sons likewise incapable of the same good judgement and standards.“But I’ve been/known a teenage boy,” You say. Because here’s the thing — thoughts are not equal to actions.
We’ve relegated dads to a last-minute interview before engagement when God meant for them to be active, available agents of wisdom and safekeeping. Foolish dads relish the gun-bearing, tough-guy role.
The moment is a mountain to overcome in almost any relationship, but I believe it’s a mountain we, as Christians, can capture for the good of the daughter, the suitor, and the father.
But as good as ideal sounds, it’s hard to find that picture in the Bible, and ultimately it’s far too simple for most not-yet-married realities anyways. What if she’s still single at 25, 30, maybe even 40?
When she told me what it represented, I was moved to tears. Pursuing a relationship with your daughter is a conscious choice, and it takes energy and imagination, and (there's no way around this) the willingness to deal with messy emotions and questionable logic. But I have their love and respect, and our teens are eager participants in family life.
It doesn't mean you'll always want to do it or that it will be easy. They're not perfect (and neither am I), but we're connected. Now, by "pursuit" I'm not talking about chasing your little princess, spoiling her, or giving in to endless wishes and whims. That one insight—that I wanted to pursue knowing my daughters—was the lightning bolt ah-ha moment.