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The years teach much which the days never knew.
–Ralph Waldo Emerson


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family size

On trying to have as many children as you can…

I’ve always thought that that’s a pretty condescending statement made to moms of many by people who limit family size or think family size ought to be restricted.

Actually, in all truthfulness, I’ve also thought for a long time that birth-control is for people who ought not be getting pregnant for ___________ reasons. You can fill in the blank there, but words like affair, unmarried, adultery, etc., etc. come to mind. I used to say that “birth-control” is for people who shouldn’t get pregnant. And I never meant bcz of financial reasons, or logistical reasons or whatever. I meant bcz of those conditions listed above.

[[an edit is necessary here: None of those situations listed should be entered into by anyone—really, that’s not what I meant to infer.  But what I did mean to infer was the general thought that “birth control” has no place in marriage.  —This might just further muddy the waters—no hostility is meant here.]]

To say I feel strongly about this is probably an understatement because I actually believe that one of the greatest single threats to the church in the last forty years or so has been “the pill” or birth control.

Very few days go by that I don’t receive an email requesting prayer support for conception and pregnancy by women who long for a baby or who long for a family to raise for the LORD. Their hearts are full and ready to love and care for a child but their arms are empty. These don’t restrict God… they wait on Him—very, very different entirely from those who purposefully limit, destroy or cut off the possibility of God’s blessing. And then, occasionally, even from couples who’ve cut off the blessings of the LORD and seek to reverse that decision—some even if they never have another child, simply want to, in obedience to the LORD, demonstrate their sorrow over making that decision. It’s an incredible grief to many. God hears those prayers. And we trust Him for His answers.

It’s common to us to see families with many children. In fact, when we are with people who are surprised by seeing a family with several children, we are surprised that they are surprised. Large families are a common or normal occurrence to us. And actually, I think they ought to be very normal in “the church” as God has surely made plain in His Word that children are a blessing of the LORD. The saddest thing is that the common cults and other “religions” don’t cut off children. That’s sobering and really ought to be grabbing the attention of the church!

So, to that question: “Are you trying to have as many children as you can?” That’s not really an appropriate question in my mind. O, not because it’s tactless and inconsiderate, it’s because it places the weight of responsibility in the wrong place. For couples who are walking with the LORD in the Light of His Word, that decision belongs to Him—for, truly, it is the LORD who opens and closes the womb. It’s His to create life, to determine lives — His to determine the path of our life. Proverbs 16.9: “A man’s heart deviseth his way: but the LORD directeth his steps.”

Consider the great enemy of our souls. What does he do? He continually stalks the earth seeking to steal, kill and destroy. Where does he start? Yes! The home and the womb—marriage and God’s created order. Feminized men and masculine women. God’s created order upside down. Where does birth-control fit in here? Well, simply, the great threat to the church is the killing of godly seed and/or birth-control. And, really, when you consider it…birth-control isn’t. It’s not birth-control… it doesn’t control the birth, really. Really, it’s responsibility avoidance, it’s deception, it’s humanistic and worst of all, it’s death. Death because the pill doesn’t actually prevent conception… it prevents an environment where the baby can grow and thrive and then be born into its father’s and mother’s arms. Death occurs when the cycle is forced to return and that baby –yes, small as it is, is expelled. Other forms of “birth-control” have a similar result by frustrating the implantation and preventing life to grow. Sadly, it’s the common view of “the church” to limit God—to limit the blessing of the LORD and His ways for families—and then to pray for God’s blessing?!?!

More on this later… there are bright spots to this dim picture. What if Christian couples stood before the LORD and genuinely prayed for children to bring up in the nurture and admonition of the LORD and then should He do so, what if they said, LORD would You super-size that request?

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  • Pam

    Good morning. Enjoyed this post. I wish I could have been encouraged by some of these thoughts twenty years ago. Also, you may know this, but when this page loads, the new entry goes waaaay to the bottom. I have to scroll quite a bit to see it. For a while I thought you weren’t posting. I use explore. Anyway, others maybe missing out thinking the same thing. Pam

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Thank you for joining me here today, may the Lord bless you and your home.