It is quite a surprise to me that I am now pregnant with my 6th child at the age of 41. I never dreamed of having a large family. Most people don’t understand the dynamics of a large family. I had to stop working after my last child because the cost of daycare exceeded what I was making. Although I don’t have a traditional job, I work harder now than I ever have before. It is easier going to a job than it is training and nurturing your kids all day. Now’s a good time to praise the Lord for good childcare workers and teachers. They put in work! Add multiple age groups, household chores, plus breakfast, lunch, dinner, and you have a day where 24 hours isn’t enough for stay at home mommies! The Proverbs 31 woman is real. Somehow (by the grace of God) she gets it all done.
We have to live a pretty frugal life, but we never lack anything. Being good stewards over what we have is essential. There is no room to be wasteful. We eat leftovers. We only take what we’re going to use. And we ration what we have to last. If it were up to my children, they would eat all day. I can’t allow them to take something every time that they feel like it, or it won’t last until the next shopping day. This is particularly hard in the summer, so keeping them busy is key. They will eat out of boredom and not out of hunger. Trust me, they don’t starve. They eat really good. I cook every day. Fast-food is overrated, bad for you, and costs way too much for this family of soon to be 8. Occasionally we splurge, but a run to McDonald’s can cost us $60 and as the kids get older the price increases (no more chicken nuggets). This is one of the reasons that we can’t hang out with your family on the fly. I would have to sacrifice a bill to feed everybody (LBVS). When things start looking tight, God ALWAYS provides!
I have been young, and now am old; Yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken, Nor his descendants begging bread.
Another reason is we will probably be late. Have you ever tried to get 5 children ready to go out the door and into the car? It is a production. I wake up at 6 a.m. on Sundays to get to church on time for the 10:30 service, and sometimes we are still late!
My husband works a lot, when He is off, he wants to relax after taking care of his to do list (cutting the grass, etc.), and the kids and I want to be with him. Our event schedule works around this dynamic.
With all of this being said, this is only season. It may sound like a bunch a rules and a lot of work, because it is. The kids grow up fast. Their siblings make good friends and will have their backs in every situation. Our days are numbered and God needs more kingdom citizens on His team. In the long run, they won’t remember the material things that you gave or didn’t give. They will remember the wisdom that you imparted, the time that you spent with them, and the love that you showed. When they are older they will appreciate who you are instead of what you’ve done, just like as we mature in the Lord we become thankful for who He is instead of just what He blesses us with.
3 Behold, children are a heritage from 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.
5 Happy is the man who has his quiver full of them;
They shall not be ashamed,
But shall speak with their enemies in the gate.
Our children are our reward (no matter how many we have). When we raise them in the foundation of Christ they are weapons against the enemy. They won’t be afraid to confront the evil of this world and God will not let them be ashamed. They carry a solution for the worries of this world and will have the courage to execute God’s will.
So today I encourage the parents of large families. God is with you and for you. Put your trust in Him and you will not be put to shame. The enemy is afraid of the army that your raising, so stay in prayer. They will rise up and call you blessed. They don’t need all of the new coolest stuff. They need you! God’s grace is sufficient. Be a good steward and He will increase and promote. He has everything that you need in abundance. No child is a mistake. They all have purpose. You do not owe anybody an explanation for your family situation. Obey God and He will give instructions and provision. The best is yet to come!
Father, we thank you that our children are a reward. Forgive us for not trusting you and listening to the opinions of man. We know that You are our provider and have everything that we need. Show us how to love, support, nurture, and impart wisdom into our children. We want them to fulfill the purpose that you have placed inside of them. Show us how to activate and encourage their gifts. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen!