the girl with daddy issues

There are so many times I have started to write this blog, and haven’t. I’ve been called to share my story, however – because the personal aspect of this specific part of my story, I have withheld.

I don’t want to be another story of a girl with daddy issues. I really don’t. And anyone who has had any difficulties with their earthly father, you may relate. I face the struggle of the stereotype in almost every relational scenario I am apart of – personal + professional – and honestly, the stereotypes (unfortunately) are mostly true.

Or at least they were.

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Image by: Rachel Megan Photography

Though I have heard pastors and other women speaking on such struggles, it happens to be after their earthly father had passed away. And so, for many years – I thought that is when I would share mine. But, then over the years and through much healing – I’ve realized there will never be a day I dishonor my earthly father, whether in words on a screen or words from a pulpit. He gave me life. It’s through part of him that I am alive, and for that I will always be thankful.

I thank God that even in the brokenness of our family and the path that my earthly father chose – that He still is making things good and has given me a way to be thankful for the part that he did/has played in my life. There were times of anger, hurt, pain, chaos, and confusion – however, most of those days have been replaced with fleeting moments of such emotions that come and go. They no longer consume me for days, weeks, or even months at a time.

Forgiveness paves the way for more breakthrough than you’ll ever realize.

The fact is, though I a may be labeled by this stereotype – the stereotype isn’t me.

The stereotype says that I’ll never be able to love properly, but in Christ – I have and I will.

The stereotype says that I’ll cave to sexual sin in an effort to cover up the wounds/hurts from my earthly father, but in Christ – the old is gone and the new has come.  

The stereotype says that I’ll repeat or follow in either the path of my earthly father’s addiction or behavior, but in Christ – I haven’t and won’t, for my freedom is found in Christ alone.

The stereotype says that I’ll forever make other men pay for my earthly father’s mistakes, but in Christ – 7×70, forgiveness has paved the way for ultimate freedom.

The stereotype says that I’ll always be seen as ‘his’ daughter, but in Christ – I am His and He is mine.

Before I was ever my earthly father’s daughter, I was God’s. Before my earthly father ever fell and chose sin over the path God had for him, I was God’s. Before the ‘girl with daddy issues’ stereotype ever existed, I was God’s.

And so were/are you.

I write this blog today with a heavy, burdensome heart for other women like me. Women who have been labeled as ‘the one with daddy issues.’ The women who daily, are attempting to surrender, forgive and let go over and over again. The ones who though they genuinely desire to love well, are having to learn how. The ones who have so many walls up in places nobody even realizes, all in an effort to protect and hopefully restore the damage that was done to them. And even more so, for the ones who have let go of the label and choose no longer to be a victim – but an overcomer.

But let me stop here. Because some of you reading this, may be flinching and trying your hardest to stop tears from rolling because you are just now realizing this is why you’re doing what you’re doing. You’re choosing careless kisses and embraces for temporary blindness to the pain. You’ve chosen alcohol or emotional relationships as medicinal survival mechanisms. You allowed your self worth to diminish in light of what you feel like you lack because maybe, you forgot all you still have.

I’m here to tell you – whatever it is, I’ve been there. I’ve journeyed down the path of succumbing to the label rather than accepting the power of His truth. I’ve looked life in the face and said, “I just can’t…”

But let me tell you, my friend – my sister – my fellow overcomer, YOU CAN. We can – together, because He already did.

Though the enemy makes you want to believe you are alone, Jesus made a way and is making a way to prove the enemy wrong over and over again. And the way you choose to believe this, is to surrender the label and rebuke the lies of the stereotypes and daily, pick up the truth of the Cross.

The truth that, “though my father and mother forsake me, the LORD will receive me.” (Ps. 27:10)

That no matter what may have happened in the legacy before us, WE CAN be the change for the legacy that follows us. That though our heart may hurt with loss and grief at moments, it doesn’t mean that our heart will forever be absent of receiving and giving love as God intended. That when the flashbacks and memories of the good pass, that we can’t be thankful for what was good – and do our very best to surrender, forgive and then let go of what was/is bad.

There really is no long-term cure for this other than Jesus. Believe me, I’ve tried to find it. I’ve tried pursuit of perfection. I’ve tried fleeting relationships and one night stints of temporary satisfactions. I’ve tried attention to cover the wounds and I’ve even tried pretending it doesn’t exist at all. But none of those include the truth that sets us free; nor do they allow us to share in the beauty that has come from the ashes.

Because in the end, that is what we’re called to do. Testify to the truth that God has, can, will and still does make a way where there seems to be no way.

I don’t have all the answers. Heck, it took me 10 years to write this blog. However, what I do have is a Heavenly Father who daily, hourly, minute by minute shows up and reminds me who I am and who He is.

So, today – if you find yourself succumbing to the lie of being the ‘girl with daddy issues,’ I pray that this blog allowed that lie to be exposed and for the truth of His love for you to bring about freedom. Because, girl – you are not that label. You are the daughter of a Holy King of Kings and Lord of Lords and He is wooing you to come sit in His lap and allow His love, joy, peace, comfort and forgiveness heal you, restore you and then – empower you to go, do, and become the women He’s created you to be.

Because the woman He’s created you to be isn’t a girl with daddy issues at all – for you have a Father who is perfect, spotless and forever accepting, loving and restoring you. And that Daddy doesn’t sound like someone who gives us issues – but forever, gives us blessings.

“A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in His holy dwelling.”

Psalm 68:5

P.S. A note those who know me and my family personally…

There isn’t a day that I don’t pray and lift up my earthly father in prayer. I have not stopped praying and asking for God’s will to be done in his and my families’ life – however, my life is and never was meant to be defined by his presence nor his absence. Therefore, learning to move past this has been an ongoing journey for myself and even my immediate family – however, our love for his life and well-being will never cease. If you know him personally – please, lift him up in prayer, yes – but do not cast judgment. This blog in no way is meant to throw stones – however, reflect freedom. I ask that you would do the same.

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