“Daddy, wanna dance?”
The mirror ball sprinkled light across the darkened room, washing the space in prisms of blue, red, green and purple. The father sighed and stuffed pressed the ‘end call’ button on his cellphone before shoving it back down in his pocket. He held up a finger. “One dance, Priscilla.”
As the pumping beat of “Dance Like Your Daddy” rumbled the gym floor, Priscilla looked up into her father’s face as she hopped from foot to foot. But he was barely moving, absently shuffling his weight from side to side, his gaze darting around the room. Was he bored? Or maybe he was looking at the snack table.
She tugged on his hand. “Look at me, Daddy! Look what I can do!” Priscilla whirled, turning in a circle, enjoying the pretty way her pink skirt swooshed around her. Daddy frowned and lurched forward, grabbing her by the shoulders and pushing her to the right.
“Priscilla Jane! Be careful! You almost ran into someone!” He huffed and shoved his hands in his pockets. “Besides, that’s not really dancing. You’re just twirling.”
Swallowing, Priscilla slowed, warmth burning her cheeks. She had been proud of her swishy skirt and the pretty twirls but now she just felt foolish. She bit her lip and looked at the tables overflowing with punch and cookies.
“Wanna get something to eat?”
Dad rolled his eyes. “Again? You already ate four cookies before the music even started.” He shook his head. “No wonder you’re spinning in circles. Too much sugar.” He crossed his arms. “Now I know why your mother wanted me to bring you here. Load you up on sweets and I get to deal with the aftermath.”
Priscilla’s chest deflated and her eyes burned. She looked around the dance floor. Other dads were smiling at their girls—making silly faces, laughing, and spinning them around between goofy dance moves.
Why couldn’t her dad be more like them? What was wrong with her?
“Hey, Daddy, wanna dance?”
Christopher looked down into Sophia’s eyes and smiled. His little princess.
He bowed low which elicited a giggle from her lips. “Of course, my lady.”
She rolled her eyes but took his hands and tugged him out into the middle of the crowded dance floor. Rainbows of light washed across her face, bouncing against the dark sheen of her curls, her cheeks, the lavender ribbons of her dress.
When had she gotten so big?
“Daddy, watch me!”
Sophia demonstrated one of the latest dance moves that was so popular among her friends. Christopher tapped his finger against his lips.
“Now, what on earth is that called?”
She grinned. “It’s called the floss. You do it!”
He tried but chuckled at her giggles when he failed miserably. The music switched and slowed to “Butterfly Kisses”. He cupped her small hands in his as they swayed side to side. Sophia looked up, her dark eyes shining.
“I want to dance really good tonight because I’m going to be a dancer, you know.”
He lifted his brows. “Are you now?”
She nodded. “Mm-hmm. I’m going to be on Dancing with the Stars and so it’s very important that I do everything just right when I dance.”
Christopher smiled gently at the lovable bundle of energy in his arms. “Tonight isn’t about trying to be the perfect dancer, sweetie. It’s about us having fun together.” He winked. “And I’m enjoying every minute. Now, how does that floss thing go again?”
Two fathers. Two daughters. The needs of both of the girls were the same…to be loved and cherished, but only one of them experienced the security of a loving father.
Maybe you’ve been told that God is like the first father. Unfeeling. Uncaring. Cold and dismissive. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Our enemy is the great accuser. He tells us that we must perform well to be accepted. That love can only be attained when approval is achieved. That duty trumps intimacy, and our worth is determined by a checklist of virtues.
None of these things are true.
When you want to know someone, do you go around and ask everyone else about them, or do you talk to your new friend directly? If you really want to know your friend, you would go to them to find out their past, their dreams, their favorite flavor of ice cream, their pet peeves, and their favorite way to spend a day. It’s the same for God.
Don’t take others people word on Who He is. Get to know Him for yourself.
God is like the second father. Kind. Loving. Forgiving. Far more concerned with connection than duty. He’s not worried about appearances, checklists or any of the superficial things that drive us toward a list of ‘shoulds’. He wants you to know Him.
And in knowing God, you’ll come to understand who you are.