I had the privilege of spending the last week with my daughter and her seven-month-old daughter (my granddaughter). There is nothing better than to witness the love, sacrifice and instinctual wisdom of a new mom. My admiration for a strong daughter was heightened because during her visit a friend from college passed away. His death was sudden and very much unexpected. His wife was so faithful to keep us up to date on his injury and the ways we could pray. He himself left many video messages that will comfort the family in the years to come. However, at the point when disaster struck, the one who had to be strong—though she was facing her own shock, fear, denial, anguish—was his one and only daughter, a strong daughter like the one I have.
I don’t know his widow, but I have journeyed the path that she is forced to take. No one willingly walks down the valley of the shadow of death. She will be strong in her own way. I can tell that by the daughter she raised, and the way her husband talked about his soulmate. The God of all comfort will comfort her in the only way that matters. She will find a way to put one foot in front of the other while her heart is melting like wax. Her daughter will be experiencing it, too, but in a totally different way. Her grief must be walked through beside her mom and brothers but as only a daughter can experience.
I have tears in my eyes as I consider the months and years ahead for this fragile family who appear so strong. I am so glad they are connected to a strong spiritual community who will provide bumpers that will push them back together until their heart can hold all that they have to face and accept about their lives and moving forward without their beloved husband and father. It’s a heart-crushing experience and there is no way to extract the bitter agony because of his absence.
The song message he gave the last time he, personally, could update others about his need for prayer was titled “In Christ Alone”. Christ shines in strong daughters in a unique and quiet way. The way Christ shines in strong daughters is the newness of the command that John wrote in 1 John 2:7-8:
Dear friends, I am not writing you a new command but an old one, which you have had since the beginning. This old command is the message you have heard. Yet I am writing you a new command; its truth is seen in him and in you, because the darkness is passing and the true light is already shining.
The command is love. This has been the command from the Old Testament. But IN CHRIST it becomes a new command because strong daughters are not strong alone. They are strong because Christ lives in them.
Strong daughters receive their strength in Christ alone!
I always tell others that there is nothing like a firstborn daughter. What joy to know that God decided to bless my oldest daughter with a firstborn daughter, too. What joy to watch them be strong and shine the light of Christ in this world. Thank God for strong daughters who shine His light in the darkness.