“I was seated at my desk, barely able to concentrate. I shifted papers, opened drawers, glanced out the window.
Shifted papers, opened drawers, glanced out the window.
Shifted papers … I felt like I was expecting an important phone call and was just trying to do something, anything, productive while waiting. But it wasn’t working. Neither was I.
Finally, my executive assistant informed me that the young man I’d been expecting was waiting for me in the lobby.”
—Dennis Rainey, Guarding Our Daughters’ Moral Purity
So begins Dennis Rainey’s first interview with a potential date for his oldest daughter. As someone who has just completed the first real interview with the boy my daughter wants to date I can confirm that it was more than he who had sweaty palms.
This goes so hard against the grain of today’s society where children are given no restrictions and few if any guidelines to help them successfully navigate the treacherous waters of early adulthood.
Tell me the truth, would you willingly put an untrained man into the cockpit of a fighter jet with only the training he’s received by watching television, listening to some songs about flying, maybe even a few funny video tapes about flying, and conversations with his friends (who also don’t know how to fly)?
What would you expect from such a kid in the cockpit? You would have every right to expect that he would not only destroy his own life but quite likely the lives of several people in close proximity to him as well.
So I brought him in on A Dating Contract of sorts. It was simple. I’ve raised my daughter(s) for purity. And among my highest goals since their birth has been to give her away at the altar as a pure bride, and I’d walk through any fire to get there. If you’re going to date my daughter I’m going to hold you accountable to that same goal, getting you and my daughter to whatever altar you end up at, with purity.
This kind of open honesty is desperately needed and I suspect to a certain degree even wanted. Later in the same article Rainey talks about a young man who just wanted to hear the interview:
“I even had one young man come to me and say, “Mr. Rainey, I’m not interested in asking any of your daughters out on a date, but I was wondering, would you be willing to take me through the interview?” I did. He wanted to go through it so he would know what I said. It reminded me that young men today yearn for older men to enter their worlds, talk straight with them about how to treat a young lady, and call them to a high standard.”
I firmly believe that young men and young women alike are desperate for love, but they’re conception of it has been downgraded to physical intimacy. Men it’s up to us to raise the bar. Not by keeping our daughters locked in towers guarded by fire breathing dads. (Though I really do want to do that). The solution is to take a fully hands on approach to our children’s lives.
There’s a man in my church who has an incredible relationship with his daughters. I asked about it one day and his response was instant: Talk to them, but more importantly listen to them.
Every night that they were in his house he would tuck them into bed and ask them one question: “How was your day?” Then he would listen, actively and attentively to everything they said. Sometimes he heard things he didn’t want to hear, other times there wasn’t much to say but he listened. He created an environment in which his daughters know that their dad values them and loves them enough to be involved in their lives and to protect them.
That is the way it should be.
Let me set you up with some resources on this crucial topic: