I’ve had it said to me more than once, as an onlooker observes my children in tow: “You must have a lot of patience”, to which I almost always start laughing. The thing about me, that my family knows best (and the stranger obviously does not), is that I was certainly not gifted with the virtue of patience. It is probably the one thing that brings me to my knees more often than anything–repenting over and over for my quick temper, harsh words, or critical attitude. I am so prone to snap and be short-tempered with these people in my home whom I love the most!
No, I don’t have a lot of children because I decided that I was patient enough for them. More accurately, the Lord probably gave me a lot of children because He knew this crucial area where I needed so much work! I am happy to report that I am more patient, albeit not a lot more, but more than I used to be. But how silly it is for us to try to orchestrate the supernatural events of our lives to avoid growing in the areas God would so like us to grow! It’s like saying, “Since I’m overweight, I’m obviously not fit for the gym”.
We pray for patience, or mercy, or whatever virtue we lack, and then we shove away the means by which God would be most able to develop those things we pray for. Children are an EXCELLENT way by which God can chisel off our undesirable traits. How ridiculous for us to blame our own bad habits for not receiving God’s sweetest gifts! (Disclaimer: I am certainly not insinuating that having children is the only way in which God shapes our character…just one that I think He delights to use.)
Are you a perfectionist? Children will solve that. Are you a control-freak? They’ll solve that too. Oh it won’t be painless…I can promise you. But allowing God to rule in your life will bring about the sweetest, most profound transformation. A transformation beyond anything we could orchestrate ourselves.
“She will be saved in child-bearing…” Hmmm…I wonder how deep that implication is!