With every baby comes a loaf of bread under its arm … Ancient Proverb
Have you ever wondered if you should even have children? Do you look at the world and think, “Why would I bring a child into this crazy world?” Or maybe you look at the bank balance and think, “There’s no way we can afford another child!” You may have one child and you are not sure about a second. When do you know you are “done”?
I firmly believe that only the Lord and your spouse can guide you in this decision. God showed us early on to trust Him with our future family size.
My journey is not unique, maybe my story will be yours.
I’ve recently been reminiscing on my life as a child and how child-less my upbringing was. In a few days, we will celebrate the 5th birthday of our eighth (and looks like our last) child.
She was born at home with five other sisters in the home awaiting her arrival. The brothers were not too far off with friends that day.
When Adaya Mercy arrived in April of 2011, I observed all my girls just watch in complete awe and amazement at what God had given them.
A new sister…
With a three-year-old in the home they were familiarized with all the ins and outs of newborns.
Don’t mess with the umbilical cord, careful with her soft spot, only mommies can give baby a bath, etc.
What struck me like a hole in my heart and literally made my breath stand still those first few days of her life was the realization that I grew up having never – not ever, been around babies or even very young kids.
Looking at all my kids at their ages when she was born….3, 6, 8, 11, 14, 16, and 18….I had to think back of where I was at all those ages.
I was living a self-focused, self-absorbed, me-centered life. I had no idea as a child, what it meant to just want to pick up a sleeping baby in order to smell her freshly washed hair and feel her cuddly newborn body up against my chest.
After she arrived, my kids would go out of their way just to find where the baby is and pick her up to feel her gentle breath on their faces.
I knew nothing of that joy as a child.
So I really didn’t miss it. Not only that, but I realized, that no one I knew had babies. None of my friends had any younger siblings around.
Even our small church seemed to be void of a nursery (or at least I never saw it as a young child). Growing up in the 70’s was like that, you may have had the same experience. I never remember even seeing a pregnant woman, let alone any babies growing up. Of course I’m sure they were around, I just never noticed.
It was my sophomore year in college before I had even seen a woman with several small children, before I ever saw someone nurse a baby. That mom’s name was Laura, and when I met her and her children in 1990, it was the first seed that God planted in my heart for having a family, a big family. I say all this because now, at 47 I am humbled and awed by God’s decision to bless us with a large family. This is a script I could have never written in a million years.
Babies were foreign to me.
As a teenager, I was selfish, and up until Jesus became the center of my life, I was headed to a life of careers and Lord only knows what else. When I gave my heart fully to Jesus, I abandoned every preconceived notion and trusted Him with the rest.
Including my womb.
He really does know what He’s doing.
He really is the Sovereign one, and He really can make the right decisions for us and our body no matter what His answer is concerning having, adopting, or simply mentoring more children. By trusting Jesus with our future, we can live a life of no regrets. Recently, my husband Joey looked at me reflectively and said, “What if we would have stopped at two kids? Then there would be empty seats at our table!” If we choose to stop, we can’t even imagine all that we would have missed out on.
I know there is comfort in control. That it is human nature for people to want to control their environment and by controlling a family size, it makes couples feel a sense of security. It can be counter-intuitive and it requires more faith to have more children than we might feel comfortable with because it can mean we must surrender control. Trusting God with your family size is a faith walk because you can’t see what’s on the other side. We can’t predict the outcome.
We must, “sow with a vision of righteousness.” Hosea 10:12
Whether you are a young mom and exhausted because you are chasing around toddlers, or maybe you are in the hospital having just delivered your second child and the doctor asks you if you want to be “done” with having kids, please take some time to prayerfully surrender to God’s leadership and direction in your family’s life, and let God choose your quiver size.
Finally, a wise mentor told me as a young bride that the two most important things you will ever give your child outside of introducing them to Christ Jesus,
is a strong marriage relationship
Special Thanks to https://www.etsy.com/listing/123613905/discounted-price-archery-quiver-leather?ref=market