>I am a list maker.  I’ve tried to avoid it, I even made it a resolution one year to eradicate all forms of lists from my life, thinking they were the source of my stressful and anxious desire to be “accomplished”.  Sometimes, that is still true.  Though, I was reading through some of my old journal entries and quickly discovered that not all lists are bad.  Like the one that listed all the best pubs in Temple Bar, Dublin.  Or the one that began with, “Vegetables I would like to buy more of”.  I still have yet to purchase an endive or celery root, but I still, months later, think it sounds like a good idea.  There are others like, “Things I will do before I turn 30,” and “Top Ten Jobs that would be cooler than mine”, but there is one list that struck me as perhaps one of the most important lists I may ever write. Though I’m quite positive it’s not done, and may never be, that’s the one I’ll share with you today.

Things I Want my Daughter to both Know and Experience

I want my daughter to grow up in a home where God’s presence is an active reality that makes up the center, loving core of her life ; not a distant, peripheral idea

I want her to be totally and completely appalled at how much her gross, old parents still love each other and kiss in the kitchen

I want her to be sensitive and aware of herself as a social, communal being; one who needs others and who is needed by others, as part of God’s design.  I truly want her to love people- all kinds.

I want her to be fearless in her pursuits, knowing in whom her confidence and assurance comes from.  I would rather be up all night worrying about whether she’ll get Malaria in Uganda than watch her suffer silently at home, too afraid to take chances.

I want her to live in a constant state of “awakeness”, knowing that every decision she makes matters from where she purchases her food to who she defends on the lunch line or in court and that she could have a great influence on other’s decisions as well.

I want her to see her flaws as beauty because they make her who she is; but know and understand fully that she is not perfect nor is she expected to be, and will make mistakes and even fail.  Often.

I want her to be conscious of the earth we were given and how we are to care for it.  I want her to appreciate it’s beauty and be awed by creation; know that the land was given as a gift to build on, to cultivate and appreciate.

I want her to enjoy her life and live it abundantly- and love whatever she does with all she has and never hold back.

I want her to remember that her parents were young and dumb when they had her and did the best they could.  I want her to sift through all of the ways she will believe we have been unfair or unforgiving and know that it was all, truly and indefinitely because we love her.


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