Who’s Your Daddy?

who's your dad

I grew to anticipate the inquisition.

Any time I met an adult man in my charming hometown, I was asked the same question. Invariably.

“Who’s your daddy?” asked with a tilted chin and through squinted eyes. Thick with a drawl and steeped in suspicion.

Because in the tobacco farming days of Marion, South Carolina, everybody knew everybody. Families had cultivated the same parcel of land for generations, and familial connections granted a wealth of information.

Once said-sir had my father’s name, he would proudly tell me where I lived, who my grandparents were, and recount a tale involving one of my family members. It was a beautifully odd interaction.

Years later the same inquiry enjoyed smack-talk popularity and was used to denote ownership:

“Who’s your daddy?” asked with an arrogant sneer.

At that point the question cycled through my psyche and stuck. I internalized it. In a different context. Without conscious effort it became a common query of myself. Because I wanted to know him.

To know why he allowed bad things to happen to good people.

To know why some people enjoyed his protection while others did not.

To know what pleased him and why his kids were often exclusive and rigid.

To know what he expected of me and why he seemed so angry all of the time.

I wanted to know God. 

In hindsight I see this has become something of a theme in my life. So much of my growing as a human has been the result of reconciling my conception of God with my life circumstances or those of others. A lot of “What kind of God allows this?” for both the awe-inspiring and the awful.

Through my own thirty years with him, I have discovered two life-altering truths he has hammered home like tent pegs:

  • EVERY misstep I have made has been a result of an inaccurate understanding of who he is.
  • He is so confident of his own goodness he knows that if I know him better I can’t help but love him more.

He walloped me with these principles so steadily that I wrote a Bible study sharing what I’d learned. You know, trying to spare others the walloping if possible.

That was five years ago.

Who’s Your Daddy? A Glimpse into God’s Character.

It was actually the second study I had written (the first had been a women’s study that accompanied a sermon-series entitled Five Lies of the Devil).

Who’s Your Daddy? was a six-week study taught at Bean Groovy coffee shop to 50+ women. Bean Groovy closed for us for six Monday nights, and the ladies enjoyed coffee and dessert while I taught an hour or so each week on a different attribute of God’s character. The gals followed along in a workbook designed and formatted by Lindsay, and our ministry partnership was born.

There was no content other than the weekly teaching sessions and a general homework assignment to be completed before our next gathering. There were no slides to accompany the listening guides. We didn’t film the sessions; heck, we don’t have one single picture from the entire study.

Primitive though it was, it was an absolute blast. And – in the five years since, even having written and taught another study, Tell the Truth – people still share how God revealed himself to them through the content of Who’s You Daddy?


As God has given greater definition to the ministry of Tenacious Grace, he has also pointed us to revamp Who’s Your Daddy? (#WYD) and offer it as an online study.


And that’s what we’ve been getting after for the past few months. This go-round the study will feature six video teaching sessions (offered online) plus a workbook with listening guides and 24 daily devotionals. Each teaching session will tackle one attribute of God’s character (4 attributes from the original study and 2 brand new ones) and then the workbook will feature four daily devotionals that support that week’s character trait. More than 85% of the study is brand new content.

When you purchase the study, you will receive the workbook (locally or we’ll ship) with an access code for the video sessions printed inside.


The study will be available for purchase here on our site and possibly in a couple of local venues [details pending, fingers crossed].

All parts of the study are still in production but the workbooks will be available by the end of the year (Christmas shopping time) and the videos will be accessible on January 1. So you can purchase the study in advance, enjoy the crazy of the holidays, and be set to begin on New Year’s Day. We can’t wait to kick off 2016 with you!

The beauty of an online study is the freedom that allows you to participate anytime, anywhere. The teaching sessions are a little under 20 minutes each, and you can watch from your phone in carline, in a coffee shop, or as a group. The possibilities really are unlimited.

The videos will continue to be available online until Jesus comes (and then the study will be pointless 🙂 ), so there’s no date by which you must start or finish.

We live with our feet on the ground, usually stuck there by spilled juice and syrup from our kiddos’ breakfast, so we’re all about making things easy around these parts…

We haven’t nailed down pricing just yet because we’re talking through an early bird price, a group rate, and other fun options, but we’re in the $20 range (with some options coming in at a little less and some shipping options coming in at a little more).

While it has been incredibly painful to watch and listen to hours of video of myself, it has instructed my prayers.

It has helped me know where to ask God to use my unintentional repetition of a point to drive it home for you, to ask him to magically unstick that piece of hair from the side of my face, and to beg him to give supernatural effectiveness to our best efforts.


I know I bring nothing to the table but muddy fingerprints that mar the message, but my Daddy……




Can run a river through a desert.

So I’m praying he can use this study to draw us all closer to him. That – for some unexplainable reason – he’ll reveal himself in a way that leaves us smitten and awe-struck.

I’m praying for you. On my face this morning, urging him to ready the soil of our hearts for an encounter with him like we have never known. For eyes to see anew. For ears to hear with fresh understanding. For him to unzip the atmosphere and allow us to experience his presence with such power that we are never the same again.


I hope you’ll join me.

Here’s how I would love for you to join this conversation:

  • Complete our contact form if you would like to be notified when the study is available for purchase.
  • Leave any questions you have in the comments, so I can answer them for everyone’s benefit.
  • If you have participated in any of the three studies from the past, share a memory (on FB or in the comments) from the content, a funny, or a food review from the desserts we offered at the first WYD :). Since we don’t have pictures, I’d love to have you help me capture those early days…

Friends, we can know him in a way that changes EVERYTHING!

[Feature Image: Dani Vasquez]
The Vulnerability Hangover
When a Dream Dies


  1. Martha Davis
    Martha DavisReply
    September 29, 2015 at 12:30 pm

    Please let me know when the study is available.

    Comment on “Who’s Your Daddy” – Cookie’s teaching style draws you in and causes you to thirst to know more about the Father who created each of us. For me, God became more tangible, more like someone I could really reach out and touch. I know Cookie’s unique teaching style will leave you looking forward to her next study.

    Cookie, is there a way you could try to bring some of us back into a group and capture a few video shots so that it appears you are teaching a group rather than talking to a camera? You may be too far along to edit this in but it’s just a thought. We can’t go back to Bean Groovy but we can find somewhere to gather over coffee and dessert.

    Praying for you!

    • Cookie Cawthon
      September 29, 2015 at 12:44 pm

      Great question, Martha! Teaching to an audience was our first plan but that created some production complications we chose not to tackle this time around. AND I came to feel really strongly that I wanted to teach directly to my intended audience…..an online audience. Not have my online audience watch me teach to someone else. That make sense? We may have a live group in the future, but I am really pleased that this comes off super engaging and personal.

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