Saturday, March 28, 2009


I was reading an article on Ladies Against Feminism about the anti-child left (which I didn't realize actually had a name.) The article linked to another article that was clearly not Christian and extremely anti-child. This article, in turn, linked to an article about women who was part of the "Quiverfull" movement and was able to "escape." This women has now left the church as well. She has 7 children and is divorced. According to her story (which I will assume is probably true) she was verbally abused by her husband who was diabled at some point and took it out on her. They were part of the church that was extreme supportive of the quiverfull family as well as homeschooling, and pretty much all things that is stereotypical of homeschooling families.

I would have to admit that I do stand on the side of quiverfull if only for the fact that I have six children and would welcome more. But I wouldn't exactly say that I have been influenced by any one in that way. I have sought wise counsel from those who are quiverfull and those who are not. Most importantly, my husband and I have discussed and prayed through this and have reached conclusions that are best for our family. But we can't honestly see anything in scripture that mandates having as many children as God will give you. We believe that God is Soveriegn over all things and that no child is an accident or a problem for that matter. He is the author of life. I would never tell anyone that they must have as many children as they can have. That is a decision between a husband and wife. It's certain NOT something that should be mandated by a church and there should never be condemnation toward any family that chooses not to follow this idea. God's Word is true and trustworthy. So we know we can believe Him when he says that children are a blessing and we are blessed with a quiverful. But it doesn't go into HOW or WHAT that quiverfull means. It can be different for everyone. I am very bothered that there would be churches who might be abusing their position in leading their flock and possibly placing people under a burden that God never intended them to be be under. (Isn't this what the Pharisees did?)

The women who have fled the quiverfull movement and ultimately God I think were probably never truly with God or Christ. That isn't a judgement on their hearts or their salvation. But it seems to me that perhaps their faith was based solely on WHAT they did as Christians rather than on the grace that Christ gave them through His death on the cross. See, that is what is missing for so many people, in the church and out. Children do not save us. Not having children doesn't save people. Feeding the poor and doing good doesn't save people. Being a good person who perhaps might have prayed a prayer when they were children doesn't save. Salvation comes ONLY through the saving grace of Christ on the cross, his death, and resurrection. I can do nothing of my own right to save me. My righteousness is like a filthy rag or a dirty diaper, as I explain to my children. I wish I could give that message to the women who "fled" the quiverfull movement. I wish I could tell them that there is now no more condemnation for those in Christ Jesus. It wasn't Christ that forced them into situations that were overwhelming. It was the sin of man that led them there. And there is rest and forgiveness in the arms of Jesus.

I have many children. To be honest, when I was a child I spent hours studying the family pictures of my grandparents who were the 3rd and 7th of two large families. I loved looking at the pictures of each "large" family. Of course, this was before birth control. I had never heard of quiverfull but I wanted a large family. I would pretend to have many children as I played "house." This became my dream. As I have pondered whether to have more children, it isn't scripture or any mandate from God that causes me pause. It is the struggle I have with altering the body that God created for me or my husband to have. The birth control pill causes abortions and very horrible reactions in my body (I took the BC pill for about 4 months when I got married.) Other forms of contraception I believe get in the way. I currently use breastfeeding as my contraception ( and yes, if done right, it works for a while.) I won't take permanent measures to be "done" simply because I believe my tubes, ovaries, and uterus serve a purpose being in tact and I believe the same for my husband with is parts.

I didn't realize there were so many people who were so down on the large family "movement." It's ad really. Some of the comments I read on the secular websites were so negative and hateful. They've never met my family. They've never met the Duggers. They make assumptions about families like ours simply because they watch other reality shows about large families on TV or they believe all the media hype around stories like the OctoMom. Or maybe these people are truly anti-child. I wander if they would get to know our families if they'd change their mind. If cameras could come into my home for a day or even week they might see something different. Not that I am perfect. My greatest hope is that they would see the love of Jesus in our home. They would see that we don't expect perfection. We just seek to glorify God in all that we do. And that might include the number of children we have being beyond the normal number of children that is expected. I am open to God's direction an calling. I just want to serve Jesus and love Him with all my heart, soul, mind, and strength.

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