'Only vision can give purpose to your pain, which enables you to endure it and reach your goal.'Christ demonstrated this incredible power of vision to help us endure; 'for the joy set before Him, He endured the cross.' Keeping your love on is no different. It requires vision."I stayed up quite late on C'mas Eve processing this very concept with Abbie (and this was BEFORE Tate got sick, and THEN our sugary SJ and sweet Jojie needed lots more nocturnal nurturing than usual) . Victoria Abigail is a Christmas gift to all who know her, as she keeps her love on in ways that raise the bar for all of us who get to live life with her 24/7. She's a daughter who 'looks like her Heavenly Daddy,' (this 'lookin' like our papa' simple theological concept that Dawna Da Silva mentions so often is changing me, big time).Even though there are times when well-meaning people's reactions to her choice to be joyfully serving her earthly father full time hurts, Abbie believes the amount of time between high school graduation and married life is shorter than most people realize. She desires to be as equipped as possible to be a truly content support person/helpmeet, to her future husband, knowing he'll have an intensely missional lifestyle. Being faithful to the various roles she plays in our life enterprise, as administrative assistant to multiple areas of her daddy's business, ministry, & estate oversight, is no small deal. It's earning an apprenticeship style Ph.D. for Abbie, to prepare her for the life she'll build with a visionary husband of her own someday.This calling she hits the floor running with (365 days a year) is unfortunately not always revered, understood, celebrated, or encouraged, bc it's so extraordinarily counter-cultural, and outside of people's experiential grid. Some of the sharpest professional women I know don't bear a fraction of the responsibilities our sweet Abbie gladly embraces for the Kingdom, inside AND outside our walls. It's a great honor and an undeserved privilege that she's chosen to come alongside me as a younger, less sleep deprived, highly intelligent woman, to learn with me about God's desire to free us from the chains of our controlling, feministic tendencies, one day at a time. A grown daughter who offers her gifts and talents to see her visionary dad's Biblical dreams come to pass is a treasure we don't take for granted.
I watched 'Cold Mountain' with Shane for an at home date recently, and the commitment Nicole Kidman's character displayed towards her father is one of the few pictures I've seen Hollywood paint of what Abbie's life is about. A pioneer, in many ways, paving new territory. Walking a narrow road, but enjoying it as God's best, even when it feels lonely at times, like it does for all women embracing Titus 2:3-5 as the mandate for single AND married womanhood. The father on the film, Donald Sutherland (one of Shane's favorite actors), was genuinely grateful for his visionary daughter's pure hearted devotion, exactly like Shane is about Abbie's. For her, it's more than enough of a reward to be his delight, knowing she puts a smile on Jesus' face when she does so.