WONDERFUL DAYS AHEAD
“Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary, the brother of James, and Joses,
and of Juda, and Simon? and are not his sisters here with us?”
Often young mothers feel very overwhelmed with their little ones. Yes, it is a fact that the most engulfing time of motherhood is when you have your first two or three children. You have to do everything for them. You don’t have any help and it is often exhausting. I remember when I had three children in 17 months (I cheated and had twins)! I hardly had time to go to the bathroom. Tiredness was like a pain. But I survived. I look back and remember those days with joy.
However, there is another fact that many young mothers don’t understand because they haven’t yet experienced it. It gets easier to have another child when you have older children. It’s not the mothers of six, seven, or more children who feel overwhelmed. It’s the mother’s with their first one or two children.
What happens is that your little children grow. They don’t stay little forever and as you train them, they become wonderful helpers. When a new baby comes into the home, instead of this little one adding a burden to the home, they bring more joy and blessing, not only to you, but the whole family. When you have children who are growing older, you have many more hands on deck to help--to hold the baby, to ooh and aah and keep your baby smiling and laughing, to bring this and that to you while you sit and nurse, to help with the dishes and housework, to cook a meal, and to keep the home running smoothly. You are getting to the reward time of mothering.
Every baby brings more love into a home. Not just love for the baby, but a new wave of love for every child in the family. Many mothers of larger families have share with me how when a new baby comes into the home they are renewed with love for motherhood and for every member of the family. Every time you put your new baby to the breast, you release prolactin and oxytocin which make you more motherly. The more a mother puts her baby to the breast the more motherly she becomes.
Currently I have two Above Rubies helpers in my home. What a joy they are. Both come from larger families. Shelby is the eldest daughter of nine children and recently her mother and siblings came and stayed the night with us. What utter joy to see the love between Shelby and all her little brothers and sisters. They adore her and she adores them. And what a joy to have this precious family sit around our table for our Friday evening meal. They were all so well-mannered, polite, and delightful. At Family Devotions they spontaneously answered questions from the Bible and prayed beautifully. And what about this mother of nine children? She looks like Shelby’s sister. No one can believe she is the mother.
Shelby tells me that a neighbor’s three children play at their home every day. They say, “We love being here because it’s more fun, there’s more children to play with, your mother is so calm, and there’s no stress.”
Lizzy is in the middle of a family of twelve. She says “I just love being part of a big family. There is so much goodness. I would hate to be in a small family (although I don’t know what that’s like).” She also has loads of cousins. Her mother is one of three daughters-- one sister also has twelve children and another thirteen. I know these families personally. They are filled with love, joy, and life even in the midst of difficulties and sorrows.
I think of my daughter, Serene (Trim Healthy :Mama). Serene gave birth to her eighth biological baby on Mother’s Day 2015 (although there are 13 in the family because she also adopted five). Her testimony is the same: “Oh mother, I have even more love for all my children since little Remmy was born.” And it certainly isn’t without difficulties and challenges. Remmy was born with a an extraordinary high pallet which makes it impossible for him to suck milk from the breast. Not to be outdone, she continues to nurse Remmy at her breast, pumping night and day so he can receive milk from a tube while he tries to suck at the breast. In her big family there are many other things at her beck and call with Trim Healthy Mama, interviews, and filming, and yet she continues to be fulltime “Mrs. Pump.” She couldn’t do it all without the older children.
Is she complaining and miserable because of all this extra load. No, joy fills this home. There is no greater joy for Colin and I to pop over to them in an evening and bask in the peace, joy, and love that fills their home as they all sit around every evening and fellowship together as a family. The atmosphere is “rich” with delight.
I could continue with hundreds of testimonies of mothers of larger families. But what I really want to do is encourage you. Don’t give up in these trying times with little ones all around you. The season changes. Your children will grow. And it becomes easier and easier.
And remember that Jesus grew up in a large family. If God thought that it was best for children to only have a couple of siblings, He would not have chosen for His beloved Son, the Creator of the worlds, the One who was very God, to be part of a large family. Mark 6:3 tells of Jesus’ four brothers and his “sisters.” If there were only two sisters, it would be a family of seven. However, “sisters” is plural and he could have had three to five sisters. He may have been part of a family of ten or more!
“I thank you, dear Father, that You do not give me more than I can handle. You are the One who planned the way family should be and You know what is best for me. I embrace Your will with all my heart, knowing that there is no greater place to be than in Your perfect will. Amen.”
I am safe and secure as I walk in the perfect will of God.