This is a true story. I thought it would be appropriate to share in honor of Father’s Day.
You know that list almost every girl has, a list of all that we wish for in our future husband? When I first wrote that list (probably in high school), I had about 40 items on that list. I don’t remember them all, but I remember having some ridiculous ones in there – like I want him to play music, or I want him to write poems to me. How idealistic was I? Well, I am glad I didn’t stick to that list, because my husband neither plays music nor writes poems. God knew exactly the kind of person who would be the best fit for me. What’s even more beautiful is that He also knew the kind of person to whom I would be the best fit for. He is the ultimate Matchmaker!
And the Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness. For example, we don’t know what God wants us to pray for. But the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in words. And the Father who knows all hearts knows what the Spirit is saying, for the Spirit pleads for us believers in harmony with God’s own will.
–Romans 8:26-27 NLT
I think this passage applied so much to my prayers for my future husband. I didn’t know what kind of man to pray for, although I thought I did. Instead, the Holy Spirit inside of me knew. And there was one particular day, in my mid-twenties, when these groanings did express themselves in words. I will never forget that day.
I remember the exact spot. I was driving in my car. A song came on the radio. It was the song “Just To Be With You” by Third Day. It’s a song about how a man will make many empty promises to claim his love, but he often cannot keep his promise. The song then compares this to the love of Jesus and all the promises He did fulfill to prove His love.
Just to be with you I’ve done everything
There’s no price I did not pay, no
Just to be with you I gave everything
Yes I gave my life away.
I was bawling, and bawling, and bawling. Actually, I was wailing…uncontrollably…in my car, alone. I’ve had many moments like this in my life, when I was completely overwhelmed and consumed by God’s love. Except this time, I was not thinking about myself. I was thinking of my future children. I was not even dating anyone at the time. All of a sudden, my heart cried out for my future children. I longed for them to know of this overwhelming love. I longed for them to find their complete security in God’s love. I also prayed, probably harder than ever before, for them to have a father who will show them a glimpse of this love, a father who will be the best possible example to them of their Heavenly Father. I made a promise that day. I vowed before God that I would not settle for a second best. I will not settle until I found a man who loves God with all of his heart, and a man who will show God’s unconditional love to his children. I will not settle until I found the best possible father for them.
Well, fast forward to present day. I still can’t get through retelling the story of that day without tears rolling from my eyes. The tears are not only from reliving the emotions of that day. They come from seeing the faithfulness of my God in answering that prayer, when I watch my husband with our daughters. I prayed for the best, and He gave me the best. He exceeded all that I asked for or imagined. I am not saying my husband is perfect. However, my special prayer was that he will be the kind of father who will demonstrate God’s love to his children to the best of his ability. I can say this with full confidence: there is not a day that goes by that my girls do not know fully how much their father loves them. They know they are special and adored. They feel completely secure in his love. They will not have an unhealthy need to look for a man’s love elsewhere, because their heart is overflowing with the love they receive from their Daddy. He is truly the best father I could have chosen for my children.
Everyday, I get to witness this miracle. Everyday, I witness the answer to my prayer. Everyday, in my heart, I praise God and tell Him, “Thank You.”
PS. The place I drove by on that particular day (when I first prayed that prayer) happened to be right in front of Tropical Smoothie Café, a store my husband owned at the time. Less than a year later, I met him for the first time. Goosebumps!