I have had a pretty amazing week as I have been traveling recently. I had the sad experience of being at the bedside of a dying woman with her husband and daughter. There was great concern and gratitude for a precious mother and wife.
I was later passing through the town where my daughter lives and stopped to have lunch with her. Just as I got up from the table at the restaurant to head for the car, her water broke and she went into labor. Within three hours she had her second child, and our second grandchild.
It was a glorious experience as we (my wife and I) were at her bedside as her second son came into the world. Those wonderful moments that afternoon of grandpa, grandma, mom, dad, and older brother holding the new baby we had just welcomed into the world, was simply a miraculous testimony of the goodness of God.
Then in the midst of it all, I came across a time magazine article entitled, “The Childfree Life, When Having it all Means Not Having Children.” It was previewed by a cover photo that pretty much sums up the argument: a young, fit couple lounging on a beach and gazing up at the camera with blissful smiles. And of course no child anywhere in sight.
It was obvious that the editors seemed to want to encourage a childless life that is increasingly common, morally acceptable, and a lifestyle choice that more people are legitimately making. The feminist movement once defined “having it all” as a woman being able to pursue both career and family. Now it seems to mean having a relationship and a career without the annoyances or burden of children.
Childlessness is on the rise in the US. Our birthrate is the lowest in recorded history. The article’s author spoke to a variety of women who had decided not to have children. Some never experienced the desire, others had satisfying careers and could not imagine taking the responsibility to raise children, and others said the cost was too high and simply couldn’t afford it.
While I would not want to infer that every female on the planet must and should have kids, another story on the heels of the Time article was upsetting and revealing. It was from the Guardian of Britain that reported research from the London School of Economics that suggested that smart women don’t have children. According to the author of a book “The Intelligence Paradox,” maternal urges drop by 25 percent with every extra 15 IQ points. The clear inference is that the dumber you are the more likely you are to have kids. To sum the articles up, you can have it all without children, it is not selfish to avoid the burden of raising children, and the smarter you are the more you will realize that to have a fulfilled life you don’t need children.
Enemy Who Hates Family
Recently, I have read and watched many media reports, both conservative and liberal, expressing the correlation of the breakdown of the family with violent behavior and social ills. The Bible clearly shows us that the enemy hates family because it expresses the image of the Godhead. He works to destroy it wherever and however he can. As I pondered on all of these things, Scriptures come to my mind.
Luk 9:23-24 And He was saying to them all, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross daily and follow Me. 24 “For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake, he is the one who will save it.
Act 4:25-26 CEV And by the Holy Spirit you spoke to our ancestor David… “Why are all the Gentiles so furious/plot? Why do people make foolish/useless plans (quote from Psa 2:1-3 CEV Why do the nations plot, and why do their people make useless plans? 2 The kings of this earth have all joined together to turn against the LORD and his chosen one. 3 They say, “Let’s cut the ropes and set ourselves free!”)
Gen 1:28 God blessed them; and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth.
Psa 127:3-4 Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. 4 Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, So are the children of one’s youth.
Mar 10:29-30 Jesus said, “Truly I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or farms, for My sake and for the gospel’s sake, 30 but that he will receive a hundred times as much now in the present age, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and farms, along with persecutions; and in the age to come, eternal life.
Loving God’s Family – A Multi-generational Focus
Not everyone is destined to have natural children, but mankind’s unrelenting pursuit of self fulfillment, apart from God’s design, which they see as “ropes” that need cut to “set ourselves free,” will not lead to the life Jesus came to bring. There is an imprint of God in us that has a multi-generational focus. It is a spiritual DNA that causes us to pursue a mandate of helping the coming generations, not just selfishly pursue our own. In the end, there will be no natural or spiritual sons or daughters, standing by our bedside, or at our funeral, thanking us for the influence and impartation we have made in their lives. I do want to “have it all” and in God’s sight that is doing all I can to influence my natural and spiritual children toward the things of God. A childless life isn’t God’s best.
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