This Book is about protection. We know a number of girls whose fathers are so passive they don't provide their daughters any kind of guidance, direction, discipline or correction. We know girls who like it this way. Said one of these girls, "I sure hope my dad never picks up any of these ideas about interfering with my life or what I want!"
That girl is afraid to lose a measure of childish independence. She is afraid of fatherly input and protection. If you don't want this from your father, then you don't have the heart for this book. If you are not willing to give your heart to your father, this book will put you at odds with the Scriptural mandate you will find here.First of all, just because a father does not give as much guidance to their daughters as Mr. Botkin or Mr. Phillips does, it does not mean that their father is passive. Many men just lead differently then Mr. Botkin or Mr. Phillips. For many years after reading So Much More I would be frustrated that my father wasn't "leading" me. He wasn't telling me what he wanted me to do, how I was supposed to live my life after high school, and he wasn't sharing with me his vision and telling me I needed to follow it and make it my own.
Now don't get me wrong, my dad is a wonderful leader. I highly respect and value his opinions. He does care about giving me protection and guidance. But if there is one thing I know my dad doesn't want for me it is to be a "monkey on a motorcycle" ie. he wants me to think for myself and not just blindly follow someones commands without thinking. (I am not saying the Botkins or Phillips family is advocating that we be "monkeys on a motorcycle" but some of the ways they portray leadership and passivity I don't think are correct.) Therefore the way my dad leads me will be different from the way other fathers lead who have different "visions".
My dad raised me to have a relationship with Christ and to be following Christ's will for myself not because someone else tells me this is Christ's will but because I knew it for myself. He basically raised me so that when I became an adult I was just that, an adult. He didn't need to be constantly giving me instructions about what I needed to be doing. He didn't have to check up on me. He knew he "trained me up in the way I should go and when I was older I wouldn't depart from it"
My dad does lead and guide me. I always know I can get guidance from my dad. I go to him a lot. I know when I go to him for guidance it will be just that, guidance. He won't tell me what to do. He points me in the right direction but he rarely tells me exactly what to do. (I am not saying that there is never a time and place for a father to tell his daughter what he thinks she should do)
Once I got past trying to have my father fit into the Vision Forum and So Much More leadership mold I could actually start to see and appreciate the way my father leads, guides, and protects our family.
A note about their opinions of girls who don't want their father's input. I'm not sure you can say they are "afraid of losing childish independence and afraid of fatherly input and protection". Some may be, granted, but other girls may just not see Scripture to be what they are claiming. Maybe it just means that they are like the Bereans and are searching the Scriptures to see if what they are claiming lines up. If God hasn't shown them that this is what Scripture is saying those girls should not follow what is being said in this book. Even if it means being labeled as "afraid of losing childish independence and afraid of fatherly input and protection" and experiencing rejection from conservative Christians.
Remember the Pharisees studied the Scriptures and came to the wrong conclusions. Just because one can "find" it in Scripture or godly leaders say it is so does not mean someones conclusion is right!
I will finish Chapter 1 on Friday. Stay tuned!