I don’t travel well without my family. Let me explain; I have anxiety issues when I am not with my wife and daughters. While it remains a self-diagnosed condition, please allow me to elaborate. Society tends to cater to or define the majority of “men” as sport-following, grunt producing, non-emotional, more grunt producing, outdoors-y, tough, adrenaline junky, army-of-one species. I tend to fall into the category of love to communicate with others, be home by dinner, care more about Super Bowl commercials than any game, grunting will occasionally occur when I twist a little funny while playing with my daughters as a substitution for working out, and my idea of the “great outdoors” or “roughing it” is staying at a four star resort instead of a five star resort.
The number one inquiry that my wife and I get when we share with others that we have two young daughters is regarding whether or not we will try for a boy. It seems as if it there is an inference that the ultimate goal of every married couple is to produce a male child. I love my nephews and am certainly glad that God made me of the male sex, but my heart has never longed for a connection or desire to have a son. As selfish as it may sound, I started to pray for a daughter from the moment we found out that my wife was pregnant. However, my wife appeared to be thinking completely opposite. During our baby sex confirmation appointment (not sure of the technical name), I found it very interesting that the technician made sure that last piece of information mentioned prior to bolting out the door is the sex of the baby. I can’t quite remember if the ultrasound unit had even finished powering off, but as soon as she stood up and stated that we were having a girl, the door started to close behind her. My wife’s immediate response was to attempt to stop her and ask her to double-check, as she was certain it was supposed to be a boy.
As humans we always seem to know what we want, but God always knows what we need. It took Stacey a couple of days to not feel guilty about not being ecstatic at the initial notification; however, God quickly replaced that insecurity with elation as the days, weeks and years progressed.
Naming of our first child was easy; “Anastasia” is where my wife’s name originated, plus it sounds like a princess name and if you haven’t picked up on it, I tend to have a soft spot for girls. When we found out that we were going to be expecting a second child we prayed hard for another girl. Together we knew we had to name her “Arabella” as it means “answered prayer.” Also, it sounds like another princess name.
Here are some of my top five reasons to get excited about having a daughter:
- Clothes shopping will always be more fun
- No reason to buy stock in duct tape and bubble wrap
- An automatic increase in vocabulary; today’s word: accessorize
- Three words: daddy-daughter time
- Three simple rules for purchasing anything: glittery, shiny and pink
Have you ever noticed that we often find identity in what we do versus who God created us to be as people? I mentioned that like to communicate with people; however, often times due to insecurities in not fitting this “manly man” image that society loves to communicate, I often shy away or automatically assume I could never relate to different groups of people. I often get turned off to conversations from guys who follow the following format:
- Step 1: Provide Greeting
- Step 2: State name
- Step 3: Ask other male “So, what do you do?”
When it comes to identity in Christ, I love to read Romans 8. This remains a very powerful passage that covers benefits from living a life walking with God, our identify as believers and future glory thanks to God’s everlasting love. When you get a moment, be sure to check it out.
Think about it, if my entire identity is found in being a husband and father, my identity could be lost in an instant. If I found my identity in a position at work, what happens when that role changes? In a previous post I referenced God as being absolute truth. I can rest assured and be thankful that my relationship with Jesus Christ and identity in Him is the one thing in this world that can never be taken.
My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand (John 10:29)
Where is your identity found? Are you defined by what you do or who you serve? Is your identity found in people or is it found in something or someone much bigger?
I would like to leave the final thought from a quote that I heard from attending a church service this past week. It really helped with my perspective on identity, being that most of our identity-chasing in this life only lasts on a temporary basis.
One hundred years from now the only thing that will matter in a person’s life is what they believe about Jesus.