Friday, June 19, 2009

To My Future Son-in-Law

I am writing this to you in June 2009 as I listen to your future wife and her friend laughing at YouTube videos and pretending to study for Economics. She is a truly beautiful girl...even sitting in there with no makeup on and her hair looking like mine does every morning. She could have gone out tonight...but she didn't. She is content just to be at home.

I don't really know who you are...or maybe I do and just don't know it yet...but I assume that you are tall, probably brunette, and at some point played either football or baseball in high school...or both. I wouldn't be surprised if your choice of vehicle was a pickup truck or big SUV. I'd be willing to bet that you are from the South. Camo likely becomes you...and you are probably equally comfortable in a pair of Carhartt's and work boots. I know that you will be handsome with a great smile and kind eyes. At least that has been her type up to now.

I'm very sure that she will want to meet your family, and will be looking for some information that is critical to her. She will watch the way you treat your mother, and she will note the way that your mother treats her. If your mother does not like her...chances will have a lot to overcome to win her heart. She has had one mother treat her poorly, and so it is higher up on her "needs" list than you might know. Although some girls won't...she will be interested in your siblings, cousins, and closest friends. She has an extended and rich view of "family" and will want to make sure that yours is a family where she is comfortable.

I sincerely doubt that you will be in the top 10% of your class...but I can dream, can't I? I do know that you will be smart enough to eventually be employable...because if you aren't...her Daddy and I would have already sent you on your way. My girl is extremely smart...but not in the classic sense. She has to work for her grades...and she does. She is extremely intelligent in very important to get things done, how to care for people, how to manage her time and money, and how to support those that she loves. She is not afraid to work, and is certainly not spoiled, extravagant, or demanding. Not unbearably so, anyway.

The only exceptions are that she does like her toenails painted and will want to look "cute" for you. She will never embarrass you by dressing inappropriately or not pulling herself together. She prides herself in looking nice...but is not vain or silly. She knows how to shop from the sale rack, and gets a kick out of getting something for almost nothing. She will also never spend without you knowing exactly what she is buying...and why. Not that you need to take advantage of that and try to control her...because it truly is not necessary. She values a dollar and has had a job in high school...and still does. She does not expect everything to be handed to her, and she will not waste her time or money...or yours.

I know that you will be somewhat athletic, and will end up joining a gym if you haven't already. She is serious about keeping herself in shape, and since she has her Dad out there running with her can pretty much count on that as part of your life. Your couch potato days are over.

You may be a fraternity boy...but you don't have to be to draw her attention. She tends to look at the person and how they treat her far more than anything else. She won't try to "fix" you unless you originally had a problem with manners or grammar that needed to be pointed out. Life is too short to be embarrassed because someone eats like a caveman. She understands that what you do affects her and her future. So, I hope that you will always honor her by putting your best foot forward in all situations.

If you ARE in a fraternity, though, she will expect you to conduct yourself like a gentleman. There are party girls who will whoop it up and carry on...but as you know...she is NOT one. I suggest that you sow any wild oats you are planning to sow before encountering her...or you have missed your chance. If you met her at a fraternity party...I'd be willing to bet it was your night to be the designated driver when you did.

You are probably a dreamer and see possibilities in everything. I say this because she is a very literal thinker. That does not mean that she is not creative...she is. But, she has never been full of dreams of her own. She has chosen to be guided into areas where her skills could be developed. She is a go-getter...but she will need someone who can show her the possibilities and dream big dreams for her or with her. She will also need someone who sees the magic in life and will bring that magic to hers. I suspect that you are exactly this type of person. She will call you a "romantic." All I can say is that you had better put some effort into your proposal...if you want her to say yes...and you'd better go have that talk with her Daddy me...she will expect it.

I hope that you also are driven, outgoing, and able to deal with outspoken people. If the first two are will complement each other well. If you can't take the may want to rethink your stance on that. You will find that my daughter will push you to be your best, and will provide an environment for you where you succeed. She will expect you to want the best out of yourself as well.

She has never had to be the center of attention...although as beautiful as she might be surprised by that. She is definitely a "wind beneath the wings" type...and you and any children you have will be blessed from her gift of service to others. I have no doubt that she will be a wonderful mother.

I know that you have turned her head by making her the center of your world. She is looking for exactly that. And frankly, she deserves nothing less from you. Please don't forget that as your weeks turn into months, years and decades.

But most importantly, she wants a man who is going to be a Christian leader in the home. She wants to be the helpmate to a strong, godly man. She wants you to treasure her...but she wants your heart right with the Lord first. She wants you to have an opinion...but to be willing to listen and then be decisive. If you fail to include her in the decisions you will regret it. Her wisdom is amazing. If you acquiesce to everything she will find that neither of you is happy. She wants you to lead...but in doing so...wants to feel like she has your heart and your love.

I know that this is a tall order, and that you must be an incredibly special person, and I look forward to meeting you in God's time. We know this, of course, because we have been praying for you and your preparation for her since she was a little girl. We have thought of you often through the years...

Before I end, however, I want to say that I hope that you will love her deeply and will work through whatever comes your way. Life isn't easy, and marriage is harder than it looks. I also hope that you will find it possible to love us as well. That is the only part that I worry about right now. Unfortunately, I don't bond easily to most of the people she dates...although I have once. Since then, I have felt that it only right that we should wait for you...and we are guarding our hearts carefully.

So, whatever it is that you are doing out there tonight...I hope that you are doing it with my daughter - your future wife - somewhere in the back of your mind. I hope that you are treating other people's daughters with respect and honor, and are not sowing destructive patterns into your life. I believe that you think enough of yourself to wait for what God is going to bless you with in my wonderful daughter.

And while I can't wait to meet you...for now...I am content with just the idea of you. We are not ready to give her away just yet. She is also growing more beautiful internally and externally day by day...although I often find it hard to believe that it is possible. So, until the day of God's choosing...take care of yourself...grow good. Someone wonderful is waiting on you.

P.S. I hope that you like animals. You'll need to...

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