Dear Liana Grace,
Today you’re turning one! What a milestone…both for you and for me. One year ago your mommy and I welcomed you into this world with open arms and your sweet smile has warmed our hearts ever since. There are a few things about our big world that I’m going to have to teach you. I pray you take my words seriously as you grow. I want nothing but the best for you, I promise.
As your daddy, it is my responsibility to show you how a man treats a lady. I will love you unconditionally always. I will always see you not only as my daughter; but also as a child of God. I will listen before I speak. I will make mistakes, lots of them. But I will always be man enough to admit them and ask for your forgiveness. I will work really hard to guard how I speak my words so to protect your heart. I will recognize your beauty early and often and will do all that is in my power to protect it from the nasty things in this world that only want to take advantage of it. I can guarantee we will have those ‘Oh dad…’ moments when you wish I would just butt out. I promise that I never will because I love you too much to turn a deaf ear to what I think may harm your innocence.
You are so blessed to have the mommy that you do. She’s the queen of our home. Listen to her and she will always lead you on the right path. She will tenderly instruct you in the ways of being a Godly woman. From her you will discover a wealth of knowledge about healthy living, creative ingenuity, and all the beauty secrets you’ll ever need to know. You ladies will be the best of friends. I’m sure you’ll have a endless special moments to talk about life and love on all of the shopping trips you’re guaranteed to go on.
Your sister is one of a kind amazing. As our first born, she taught us how to be parents. But when you were born, we learned how little we really knew. The two of you are nothing alike and that’s awesome. We will never expect you to be like Ella Joy. We expect you to be you! She genuinely thinks you’re awesome. The two of you will have no shortage of fun experiences discovering what this world is made of. I promise I’ll give you enough freedom to discover; but never enough to allow you to go astray.
Finally if there’s anything you need to know about this world, it’s that Jesus is everything. Many will try to tell you otherwise. But the truth is not determined by what the majority think. The truth is revealed in what is timeless and dependable. We will go to church every week. And we will worship Jesus in our home. You don’t get to choose that because I’ve already chosen that for you. You’ll soon learn that I am a pastor and that means that a lot of people depend on me to teach the about Jesus. While that’s a special job, teaching you and your sister about Jesus will always be more important to me. You will always have me as a daddy before a pastor. I’ll never be too busy in the ministry to be your daddy.
Now that’s a lot to take in, but I think you can handle it…you’re a whole year old now.
I love you baby girl,