Ok before I start its only fair to say that my daughter isn’t a teenager (she’s almost 4) and I’m really not a fan of Twilight. But because I was forced to see the movie and I work with teenagers (and I can imagine my daughter being a teenager one day), I went to the movies with the eyes of a father.
Here are three things I’d tell my daughter after we watched New Moon together…
1. You are intensely loved by me and worthy of being pursued one day by the right young man.
My hearts desire is that you follow that path that God has for you. If that includes marriage, then my hope is in giving you away to the right man. Until then I will do everything I can for you as a father. I will chase away the creeps, ask you great questions, and perform background checks on any guy that comes through the front door (ok maybe not the last one…but maybe). I also promise that if you bring home the right guy you won’t find me cleaning my gun or talking about how people get lost in the Everglades and never come out. In fact it will be a joy for me to give you away one day. If you bring home the right guy, I’ll pay for the wedding and rejoice on the day that my princess becomes someone elses queen.
2. Some things appear more urgent than they are.
In the movies Edward says all kinds of nice things to Bella (once you take away the creepy 100 year age difference… please never date a man 100 years older than you… thats a whole new level of creepy). Everyone enjoy hearing nice things like, “you make life worth living.” Sometimes words spoken softly and sweetly can be mistaken for love. Real love is a commitment and it takes time to show up. Guard your self from giving your heart away to anyone who talks a good game. This kind of talk can make you think that things are more intimate than they are.
Too many young men are careless with their words. Many young boys are living life in transition and are mistaken in their feelings or they carry sinister motives and are trying to manipulate you. A young man worth your time will guard his words and will not lead you on. The woman pursued by solomon in Song of Songs offers some wise advice here. She says, “I adjure you, O daughters of Jerusalem, by the gazelles or the does of the field, that you not stir up or awaken love until it pleases” (Song of Songs 2:7). Real love is patient and is evident in a young man’s actions long before it appears in his words.
3. Don’t make strong commitments while your life is in transition.
You have grown up so much from the first time I held you in my arms. You have learned so much. Every day of your life I have been amazed by you and I am proud of who you are becoming. I know one day that if it is God’s will that I will give you away at your wedding.
Right now you are going through a time of transition. You are no longer a child, but you aren’t quite an adult yet either. You are changing. Your body is changing and your thoughts, attitudes, and desires are all changing. It is okay to change. One of the problems with this time in your life though is that sometimes you may not know what you want. Or you may want two things. Like Bella in the movie you may have two guys who like you and you may like them both.
A mature woman will act decisively. Even as you become an adult, when you are uncertain I beg you not to commit yourself to anything until you have figured what you want. This is the reason for the really unpopular rule about how old you need to be before you can date. I’ll be honest. My aim is to give you away on your wedding day both physically and emotionally pure. I know that purity in your marriage will light an intense fire of intimacy and trust with your husband.
I love you and I truly want the best for you. That day they handed you to me in the hospital was one of the best days of my life. Everyday with you had been a joyful adventure. I will always be your father and I will always love you.
12 thoughts on “3 Things I’d Tell My Teenage Daughter After Watching New Moon”
Good words of advice. You get an A in my book.
Great Post! Missed you guys yesterday. I pray your vacation time is fun and refreshing. Merry Christmas!!
thanks. We greatly missed being with our Calvary family. We have been catching up with dozens of friends and family members. We haven’t been in Mobile on a Sunday since my last Sunday here around a year and a half ago.
Let me guess what happens to your daughter if she comes to you one day saying that she has fallen in love with another woman, and she is, in fact a lesbian…
Would you still be willing to walk her down the aisle?
A really interesting post.
thanks for commenting on the blog. You have an interesting screen name.
I would like to think I will always love my daughter through whatever choices she makes. To “Fall in love” with another woman is a decision that I wouldn’t endorse nor lead her to as a parent. I simply trust God has something better. Not because I say so, but because He does in Romans 1 and elsewhere.
Would I still love her? Yes, without a doubt. Would I endorse her lifestyle by giving her a way in a ceremony to another woman? No, simply because I love her too much for that.
Seems to me like it is a big stretch to go straight from my reactions as a father watching “New Moon” to lesbianism. Is this a reaction to something else maybe?
I think one of my pieces of advise would be to avoid the “tortured soul” types (like Edward.)
If someone says they NEED NEED NEED you more than they need AIR or good hygiene – it’s good sign that they are losing their personal sense of identity and finding it in you.
IMO there are some things worth being the “tortured soul” over, like worthy causes of the souls of your fellow human, etc. But your single life is more than just idel time to figure out what you wanna do with your life. It’s pure, untainted potenital to literally DO ANYTHING!
Just my humble opinion. My wife read these books and enjoyed some of the allusions she could draw from it, but she has explained to me that Bella should have definitely picked Jacob for his zest for life and joy and energy and caring.
I enjoyed the Twilight series(I’m a twenty something by the way), and I agree with many of the points you raise here. More fathers should be the ones to communicate with their daughters on matters of true love. Kudos!
Some women, however may have been…”tainted” and made mistakes and the promise of an enjoyable marriage which will be fulfilling and righteous is afforded to them as well. The right man who will not be prejudiced and be honest is still a gift meant for any women who are not physically “pure” but have a heart for God.
Nice post! Keep it up!
Thank you so much for your kind words!
I agree with your statement on “mistakes.” To be sure, the beginning of the race does not always determine the end of the race. This is especially true when we factor in the amazing grace of God. I address my response as a father to “mistakes” briefly at the end of the following blog post:
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As a pastor preparing to retire and a newbie to blogging, I enjoyed your blog so much I have subcribed. 3 Things I’d Tell My Daughter After Watching New Moon was very insightful, especially to those of us that have not seen the movies. Keep writing.
I am a father myself (of 2 teenage daughters), and I pretty well agree with you on all of your points. I don’t think you’ll ever be ready to give her away, and every day I start to worry more that my days with my daughters are numbered. I know that one day I will have to give them away, and until then, I always let them know that things need to move at their pace in any relationship.
As far as Twilight in concerned, I actually enjoyed watching the movies with my daughter (I know, I’m crazy). My daughters are less taken by Edward and Bella’s love story than they are by Jacobs abs at this point though, and our conversations are closer to “I want to name my first son Taylor Jacob” and such.
Thank you for writing a great article that makes people think about the motives of some young men, and that actions speak louder than words. You clearly put some thought into this, and will be ready when your daughter is a teenager.
I found your blog though a New Years Resolution post, but I’ll be around for a while because the rest of your content is extremely solid. Thank you for what you do!