A little over 3 years ago, near the end of March 2007, we were all sitting around the breakfast table one Wednesday morning, when daddy announced that he and I would be heading to Georgia for the Father/Daughter Retreat the next day. I was very surprised and didn't exactly know what to expect. Late Thursday night we started our travels. We arrived at Calloway Gardens around 11:30 a.m. on the next day. That afternoon we played games and ate a dinner on a big green hill overlooking a small lake. Later that night the sessions began. I had never heard such encouraging and convicting words in my life. The next day the sessions continued and around 10 o'clock p.m. they had sharing time. During this time many fathers and daughters stood up confessing things to each other and encouraging each other. As the testimonies continued I felt the Lord tell me to stand up and publicly give my heart to my daddy...so I did!
Since that wonderful night my daddy and I have grown in our relationship so much!! As I've grown older I've observed many other father and daughters and have realized how very blessed I am to have daddy as my father. Papa is caring and thoughtful, selfless and kind. He's strong physically but most important spiritually. He loves the Lord Jesus Christ with all his heart, mind, soul, and strength and showed me the Way I should walk. I would not be the woman I am today if it weren't for my daddy's loving counsel and advice. I was almost 13 when daddy started reading "Before You Meet Prince Charming" by Sarah Mally, which introduced me to courtship and saving your heart for the one the Lord will bring to you. I shudder to think where I could be right now if it weren't for daddy searching and praying for another method other than the failed option of dating. Daddy loves each of us equally and tries wholeheartedly to get to know each of us first as individuals and to appreciate the different gifts and personalities the Lord's given us.
Well, I could go on and on but I really should stop before I lose some of you (if I haven't lost you already ;-). This is my tribute to the awesome man I have the privilege of calling father!! Happy 41st Birthday!
I love you daddy!
Your daughter forever,