This quote was brought to my attention by Chelsey. She asked what we thought about it.
Here's my reply:
"It is obvious to me that anyone who'd make such a statement has never cared for a large number of children at one time. Selfish? I beg to differ.When God gives you children, He not only wants them to be raised for Him, He gives us the opportunity to be crafted more distinctly in to His image. We have to pick up our cross daily, continuing to follow Him. There are very few times when you focus on yourself as a mother of young ones. I would call that an act of selflessness."
So, I've been thinking about this a little more. Why is it such an outrage when people have larger families?
One argument is that no mother/parent can give 6 or 10 or 20 children what they need. The parent is selfishly propagating and lacking the means (emotionally and financially) to provide for those children.
This line of thinking has a few holes in it. Most families with 5 or more children have one stay at home parent. And, generally, they home school those children. They are there for the children day in and day out, answering their questions, making sure that their needs are met. What about the average family? Those with one or two children? Where are those parents? Not with their children. Those one or two children are dropped off at 6 am at the day care where there are 19 other preschoolers or 29 other school aged children with a couple of young girls who make minimum wage. What sort of care do you think those children are getting? Even at a "good" child care center children are receiving a substandard level of care. Why are we not outraged at this? I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep. But he that is an hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth: and the wolf catcheth them, and scattereth the sheep. The hireling fleeth, because he is an hireling, and careth not for the sheep. I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine. As the Father knoweth me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down my life for the sheep.—John 10: 11 - 15. Mothers, you are the shepherd to your children. There is no amount of money that can pay someone else to do it for you.
What about the financial aspects? Are larger families just sucking up every resource available? I am surprised that this argument is even brought to the table in our ever increasing desire as a nation to move toward socialism. Isn't it everyone's RIGHT to receive everything? Isn't it my child's RIGHT to be parented by the state? Isn't it their RIGHT to get food, clothing and shelter from the government? It seems a little funny to me that people who have no problem saying that a family with lots of children takes up too many resources but we should vamp up the No Child Left Behind because every child needs to be
What about our planet!? How can we continue to support all of these people? My guess is that any family that has over four or five children has a much smaller impact on the Earth per person that a family with one or two offspring. A mother with many, who stays at home isn't causing all sorts of nasty emissions to waft up to our ozone layer because she isn't commuting to and from work or driving to the daycare/school and back every day. She's buying food in bulk, therefore avoiding the packaging that will be hanging out in landfills for generations to come. She's hanging clothes on the line, planting a garden, cooking at home, using cloth diapers, walking with her children to and from the library because she has time to do so.
Ok, now what about this one? Isn't it a FAR less selfish act to go through the process of having, caring for and raising a child than aborting it? There are 3,700 abortions that happen every day in the US alone. Why should these people die when I don't see you or anyone else killing themselves to reduce the size of their carbon footprint?
So, who are the selfish ones?
"Oh that God would give every mother a vision of the glory and splendor of the work that is given to her when a babe is placed in her bosom to be nursed and trained! Could she have but one glimpse in to the future of that life as it reaches on into eternity; could she look into it's soul to see its possibilities; could she be made to understand her own personal responsibility for the training of this child, for the development of its life, and for its destiny,--she would see that in all God's world there is no other work so noble and so worthy of her best powers, and she would commit to no others hands the sacred and holy trust given to her." JR Miller, a preacher from the 19th century, from the book Homemaking
And, of course, the final Word on all things: "God blessed them and said to them, "Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air and over every living creature that moves on the ground." Genesis 1:28
Climbing down off my soap box now.