Saturday, January 29, 2011

the children debate

Ever since I was a little girl I knew that I wanted to have children. I've always felt like that was one of God's master plans in my life. I also always knew I wanted a big family - 4 children at least. Jon, being the incredible man that he is, came into this marriage with the attitude "if you want 4, we will have 4. If you want 6 we'll have 6. As long as we can support them financially, we will have them. However, if we are only in a financial place to support 2, that is what we need to have."

The first few months of marriage were particularly rough for me. My maternal instincts were overwhelming, and I think part of that can be attributed to the fact that I had three close friends who were pregnant at that time! It was a constant struggle for me and Jon was exceedingly patient. You see, when we got married, we agreed that at the bare minimum we wanted a year of marriage before we considered trying to get pregnant. Luckily, the more I looked at our financial situation and crazy schedules, and the more supportive Jon continued to be (all while being the voice of reason!), the less I felt the urge to get pregnant right away. I even came to the conclusion that one year of marriage would not be enough--with me in grad school, I want to wait until I'm done, which at the earliest will be May 2012. Granted, we know God may have other plans and give us a little 'surprise' before we actively begin trying, and if that happens will be overwhelmed with joy. But if we can avoid it until we're ready, that's exactly what we'll plan on doing.

So what is the children debate? Well, it is a great internal debate that plays out into my head every time news of the latest suicide bombing, political unrest, etc. hits the television. I may be having a change of heart. I still love children and I think deep down that I still want them. But the past few months I have become more aware of how broken, dark, and dangerous our world has become. I fear that it will just get worse, and I really don't want to submit an innocent child, let alone 4-6 of them, to that. I fear that by the end of my lifetime the religious freedoms we so often take for granted in the U.S. may be gone. And that is no world I want my precious, beautiful children to live in. Jon sees my point of view and agrees, but his leading comment has been, "Well what if one of our children will be someone like John the Baptist? What if one or all of our children will lead many others, or even just a handful of others, to Jesus Christ? Do you really want to deny the world of that?" I completely see his point. Obviously I wouldn't want to deny the world of salvation.

In the meantime, I will continue to internally debate all of the pro's and con's and exist in a state of unease until I feel utter conviction. I will also only have 1 baby for a while:

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