Here it is 10:12 at night and I am still awake. Why? I have been up editing a story to submit to my instructor. It seems that the more I dwell on getting it just right so that maybe I can submit this story to an actual publisher the more challenging the editing becomes. Oh, this sentence is too long. I repeated this word two times before. There’s a sentence splice! Am I introducing my character off the bat? Is the second part of my story lagging? Is my conclusion concise? Editing is definitely a challenge for me because I never really see a “perfect” product. There is always something I could change to make it that much better. Isn’t that how life is? And is it harder to take a look at ourselves than to look at someone else and see things that need changing? I certainly think so.
We are expecting our third child at the end of the year! My youngest and the new baby will be exactly two years apart. I am thrilled. Ecstatic. Overjoyed. Knowing there is a little life forming within me at this very moment, which I believe God already knows of intimately, somehow makes me realize how precious child bearing really is. Somewhere in the secret of my womb God is ever so delicately and creatively knitting together my child. So you think sharing the news would be an easy thing, right? Wrong. OH how I dreaded it. Somehow, because we use natural birth control, everyone assumes all of our pregnancies are “accidents.” The reactions I have received have ranged all the way from overjoyed, tears flowing, missing exits on the highway (love you Momma), all the way to flat out anger and bitterness to just plain inconsiderate statements like, “are you freaking right now?” I try to answer, “no actually, I’m not freaking because this didn’t catch me by surprise. ” I find myself explaining to others why I am happy and trying to convince them that they should be too. With each pregnancy I knew the day I conceived. No we weren’t “planning” for a child. But we weren’t “trying” to prevent it either. I wasn’t like, “oh no how did this happen!? How could I have gotten pregnant!?” Mostly because I didn’t want to really NOT get pregnant in the first place. So out of the wood work have come well meaning friends and family trying to tell us in “Christian” terms how they think we should be honoring God. I’m sorry. I know I shouldn’t be offended. But I am. Inwardly I cringe because again it is so easy to judge others and make assumptions and somehow I find myself always being judged. Instead of basking in the glow of my secret child hidden within me, I somehow feel laughed at, scorned, mocked…judged and reprimanded. “Did you hear about A and K? They’re pregnant…AGAIN!” “Let’s hope that doesn’t happen to us! Let’s use A and K as an example of what we don’t want to happen to us!” “Oh gosh, K just isn’t smart enough to use birth control.” Is it wrong to blindly trust in the provision of God? Please consider this for just a moment. Are those Christian responses? Somehow we have received warmer congratulations from our non-christian friends. This makes me so sad because it just makes it all the more clear how much our church has “lukewarm-ed.” We take couples who see children as a blessing from God, as arrows in the hands of a warrior, and mock them, tell them they are making children their idols, talk about them behind their backs and somehow feel superior to them? Something is wrong. And although I fully understand the work involved in child rearing, it hasn’t been “work” to me. It has been JOY. BLISS. HEAVEN. God is our God and children are His blessings to us, not our idol!
So again, is it easier to edit someone elses life because it’s easier to see sin in others than it is in ourselves? Perhaps I am a laid back individual. I don’t “plan” my life out in a daily planner. I don’t aspire to reach dreams of a successful career because really all I’ve ever wanted was to be a mother (*cough* what a shame says the world). Here I am really living out my dream of having my own family surrounding me. Now here I am enjoying the warmth and love and innocence of my own children and what do I receive? Reactions like, “well oh no! what are you going to do now?” I answer you now. Live. Love. Praise my Savior in Heaven. Worship Him. Be instructed by Him. Pick up my cross. Accept the trials He has given me as growing experiences that will bring me closer to Him. No I will not be that perfect writer I want to be, I will never have the comfort of as much money as I would like to have, I won’t get everything I want…but I am completely, 100% OK with that! I am in love with the fact that God has given me the children He has because He sees me as capable of loving them (more of them!), pouring in to them, ministering to them, growing them up in the knowledge of Christ as Redeemer. Like Ruth said to Naomi, “Where you will go I will go, where you will lodge I will lodge, your people will be my people and your God will be my God,” so I too will follow my Savior. Simply speaking all I want in life is to follow Him. Isn’t that what we are ultimately created for? Did God create me to make $60,000 a year? Nope. Wouldn’t want to be. Was I created to be the perfect model of a mother who works 8 hours a day and only sees her children for 3 and balances home life with work life? NOPE. Wouldn’t want to be! I don’t see my children as hindrances to my life or goals. I see them as blessings.
So reader this is just my personal letter to myself expressing my frustrations. Bear with me.
“But Ruth said, “Do not urge me to leave you or turn back from following you; for where you go, I will go, and where you lodge, I will lodge. Your people shall be my people, and your God, my God. “Where you die, I will die, and there I will be buried. Thus may the Lord do to me, and worse, if anything but death parts you and me.” Ruth 1: 16-17
This is how I want to love my husband. This is how I want to love my God. Come what may down this road of life but never EVER will I freak out about the blessing of another child for this is where I feel God has called me.