Monday, December 10, 2007

how children are a blessing

I remember when Pete and I first got married there were some people who told us that the first year of marriage is very difficult. Basically they made it sound like if we could get through the first year with all of its adjustments we would then enjoy marriage. One friend told me that it was when she was first married that she truly saw how selfish she was. Thankfully, the first year of marriage did not prove to be difficult as some of these well meaning friends had proclaimed. In fact, it was really fun and Pete and I both just had such a sense of feeling like we were home after a long and tiring journey. Maybe it is due to having such a gracious husband, but I didn't have a renewed sense of my self centeredness (although of course it was there!) at that point. I'm sure my friend was speaking even of all the little ways we have to stop putting ourselves first, insisting that things be done "our way." My husband is really good at putting me first in all those little things (example- I didn't know until a couple of years into this that he doesn't actually like it that I squeeze the toothpaste from the middle).

Children, on the other hand, are not good at putting others first! Having children, to me, is definitely a bigger adjustment than getting married. There's really no honeymoon stage with a baby! It's all sleeplessness, spit up, diapers, extra baggage everywhere you go, paying someone to take care of the child(ren) when you want to go out for fun- "fun" ends up taking the back burner. In the midst of the newborn stage, especially with Peter, I was so exhausted and yet I have fond memories of that time simply because of the overwhelming love you feel for your child. Maybe that's the honeymoon part of the new baby stage? At any rate, I didn't yet see, at that time, the big picture of how being a mother would change me, of what my children would do to me! Or, rather, what God would do to me through my children!

In His Word, God tells us many times that children are a blessing. I know some days you wonder! I have found lately that children are a blessing because, as the number of our children grows, I see what a sinner I am. The Lord is using them to show me my selfishness and my pride. It is in having these little people who need me all day that I am seeing more clearly how desperately I need Christ! How I need His strength when I am bone tired, His peace when I am troubled, His grace when I just don't know what to do.

So, rather than seeing the trials of motherhood as discouraging, I pray God will grant us the grace to be sanctified through our calling!

"Nevertheless she will be saved in childbearing if they continue in faith, love, and holiness with self control." (1 Timothy 2:15)

What a high calling! FAITH, LOVE, HOLINESS, SELF CONTROL. How often I doubt, hate, act like the world, and lack control! His grace abounds!

1 comment:

Janet said...

Oh, that was such a great post! All I can say is....DITTO! (even the marriage part. Our first year was GREAT!)