The Gift of Babies
Babies: adorable, sweet, cuddly, who can resist them? Well, I thought I could. Before I got married, I had a conversation with a friend, stating that if for some reason, I couldn’t have a child, I would not try to change that ability through medical means. If I wasn’t a mom, oh well, I had no great longing and desire to be a mother.
Then I had my first child, and a switch was turned on inside me. All my latent maternal instincts sprang into being. This child had to be the most fabulous baby on the face of the earth. My heart was flooded with love, tenderness and emotion. I had never felt such devotion before in my life. I would look with pity on mothers who had older children, as they did not have a baby any longer.
I wondered when I was pregnant with my second child, how I would ever love my second child as much as my first. Yet, when I held our second child, once again, overwhelming love came over me. I think I was experiencing what God does with His children—limitless love. Sometimes, I think some of the greatest lessons I’ve learned about how much God loves me, is when I see how much I love my children.
I think God uses babies to remind me of His love. Have you ever noticed how a happy, smiling baby can effect others? They seem to bring joy and laughter into each social occasion they are in, be it a funeral, a wedding, or a family gathering. Babies comfort.
My granddaughter was born 11 months after my son died. She brought and still brings immense comfort to me and my family. From the beginning, she would snuggle into me when I would rock her. As she grew older, she would pat my back, as I patted hers. I sensed God’s presence when I was holding her, as if she could hear Him whisper in her ear, “Be kind to your Nana, she needs special love right now.”
Babies remind me that there is a God, and He creates and designs life. Each baby is a miracle, an absolute miracle. There is a verse in the Bible that says, “…You have knitted me in my mother’s womb…. I am fearfully and wonderfully made….” Psalm 139: 13, 14. I love the visual image this presents of God, crafting each child, putting into each child the things He wants them to have—not just their physical attributes, but their special talents and gifts.
Babies also bring—ok, I’m going to go there—guilt. This could be the reason I did not initially want to be a mom. I knew instinctively that I would fail and feel guilty. I wanted to avoid those feelings. I wanted to avoid these thoughts and questions: Am I doing enough? Should I go back to work? Should I stay at home? Should I nurse, or bottle-feed? Should we homeschool or send our children to private school or public school? How should we discipline? Etc., etc., etc.
The decisions are countless, and unending. The practical decisions frame the moral decisions of choosing to pay attention to each child, being consistent , choosing to follow through on an assignment or a consequence, remaining patient and kind, acting out love in all the ways that are significant to that child.
Here’s the thing– I have failed many times as a mother. I have failed in what I have done, and what I haven’t done, in what I have said and what I haven’t said, in what I have thought and what I haven’t thought.
Here’s the good news–Jesus has died for all the ways I have failed. Jesus has died for all the ways you have failed. He gives us Forgiveness. He gives us the courage to begin again.
Jesus has given us His Word to guide us in raising our children. The Bible is full of wisdom, (All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. 2 Timothy 3:16).
God loves our babies more than we do. He loves us, more than anyone else does. Maybe that’s why we love babies so much, because babies remind us of who God is: The Creator, the Designer, the Giver of every good gift, the Giver of Forgiveness, the Giver of Love, and the Giver of the Gift of Babies!!
So be Encouraged!!