The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Galatians 5:22-23
As a military mom, I always wanted to keep my husband in the loop with our children, both our sons and daughters. We worked hard to keep the bonds strong. My daughter Rebecca recalled some of those activities that helped her remain close with her dad. So let’s focus on some dad-daughter fun for little girls.
[fusion_builder_container hundred_percent=”yes” overflow=”visible”][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type=”1_1″ background_position=”left top” background_color=”” border_size=”” border_color=”” border_style=”solid” spacing=”yes” background_image=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” padding=”” margin_top=”0px” margin_bottom=”0px” class=”” id=”” animation_type=”” animation_speed=”0.3″ animation_direction=”left” hide_on_mobile=”no” center_content=”no” min_height=”none”][tweetthis]A dad’s involvement in a girl’s life sows many seeds.[/tweetthis]
He shows he values her by investing time in her life. He shows he believes in her dreams by listening to her. He shows he guards her heart and purity by treating her like a little lady or princess. He helps her develop character through discipline and correction administered with love. He shows his love when he cherishes her, gives her affection, and does little things to make her smile.
When he can’t be present daily, he can still be present in her heart. And each activity nurtures the growth of the Fruit of the Spirit.
- Set up special dad-daughter dates. I loved how Jim opened the door for Rebecca and treated her like a princess. It helped cultivate her manners and kindness.
- Tape reading books to her and little chats she can listen to each day. My granddaughter loved the video of my son reading to her during his time away. My daughters loved going to sleep with a tape from dad playing. It kept their heart feeling safe and loved and they went to sleep in peace.
- Skype when possible. Make the most of this time. If dad will miss a birthday or other special day, have a gift or little surprise for your daughter to open during the online time. Let her hold up a picture she drew for him that you’ll mail or scan and send. He can inspire joy in her life.
- Pray for dad. Kiss his photo goodnight. Keep photos around, especially ones of the two of them together. Online, they can pray together and talk about Sunday school. This helps grow faithfulness.
- Before my son left, he presented his little girl with a jar of colored jelly beans and a paper chain. She could eat one candy as a sweet kiss from him and remove one link to see how as the chain grew shorter he’d be home soon. That helped develop patience and self-control.
- After the hugs, children want quality time. Games, sitting on dad’s lap, and just talking are generally the order of the day. Show and tell plays a big role too. When Jim had been away most of one December, our daughter showed him the children’s tree and how they made a new ornament each day to help her wait. She explained that she invited friends to come and make ornaments too, since their dads were also away. He rejoiced in her good deed and others he discovered in chatting together. Future deployments included a journal of good deeds for dad to read. That encouraged goodness.
- Military dads are strong, but can show gentleness. Dad returned to his practice of gently tucking her into bed at night and listening to her problems with compassion. He kissed her bandaged cuts and helped her pray to forgive friends who had hurt her. He nurtured gentleness with those actions.
- Rebecca held imaginary tea parties with Dad in his absence and placed his photo on a chair. Daddy dolls or Daddy pillows make it cozier these days. When he returned they had a real tea party and she dressed up for it. They celebrated their love with their special together time.
He’ll be growing great bonds and the Fruit of the Spirit.
Karen Whiting (www.karenwhiting.com) is a mother of five grown children and widow of CG officer Commander Jim Whiting. She is an international speaker, former television host, and the author of twenty-two books, including co-author of Raising a Young Modern Day Princess: Growing the Fruit of the Spirit in Your Little Girl.[/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]