Raising two daughters gave me firsthand experience with “puppy dog eyes”, a technique the girls deployed in an attempt to get their way. The sparkling wide-open eyes and the angelic expressions were designed to turn Dad into a pile of mush. Shawn was immune to the tactic for some reason. But me? Let’s just say that maneuver was my Kryptonite.
Puppy dog eyes were not always needed to get a benefit from Dad. I loved to say “yes” as often as possible, not to spoil my daughters, but to fill their minds with happy childhood memories. Sometimes, though, their requests were not the best choices. Perhaps due to my own experiences or just my gut feeling, I exercised parental veto power. Their fervent entreaties did not negate my responsibility for their safety and well-being. And those wishes did not remove my mandate to teach them personal responsibility.
Now that my girls are adults their requests (sans the puppy dog eyes) still trickle my way in the form of projects and creative endeavors that require dad-know-how. Sweet! What a blessing to be included in their lives and what a privilege to transfer DIY knowledge to the next generation.
I just completed a project I began more than two years ago. Michelle kicked this one off with a picture on her smartphone and a question, “Hey, Dad. Can you build a light like this for my dining room?”
I examined the picture and responded, “Possibly. Now, ask me if I want to.”
Well, apparently I did. Our version, finally completed and installed for her recent birthday, is unique in that the wood plank originating in a maple tree Michelle climbed as a child. Interested readers will find more about the light along with a collection of construction pictures at this link:
Just Ask Dad will work for Amanda and Michelle as long as I have strength and resources to help. I’m a dad, and that’s what we do.
In the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7) Jesus taught us how to ask.
Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. Matthew 7:7-8 NASB
Was He offering a blank check where we name it through prayer and He must deliver? Or is there more to the story? Jesus added that faith is an integral part of asking.
And Jesus answered and said to them, “Truly I say to you, if you have faith and do not doubt, you will not only do what was done to the fig tree, but even if you say to this mountain, ‘Be taken up and cast into the sea,’ it will happen. And all things you ask in prayer, believing, you will receive. Matthew 12:21-22 NASB
And as a loving Father His answer to our request is sometimes, “Yes!”
He understands the hidden downsides in what we ask and might give another answer, “No!”
Often He wants to strengthen our faith and build our patience so He instructs us, “Wait a while.”
We can rest comfortably in the certainty that He always knows what is best and might tell us, “Sure, but not your way.”
What are you asking your Father for today?