Tuesday, May 24, 2016

The Gift of Children

"Behold, children are a gift from the Lord;
  the fruit of the womb is a reward.
 Like arrows in the hand of a warrior
  are the children of one's youth.
 Happy the man whose quiver is filled with them;"
                              Psalm 127:3-5a
It seems the people of ancient times were much wiser than those of today. They understood that having a child is a great gift and a blessing from God. So many young people today look at having children as a burden; someone who interferes with their goals for their lives--career, vacations, money, a large house, expensive new car, possessions; a beautiful body. Or they may want to have children "someday"; after they have satisfied many of their goals, but before they get too old. Then that time comes and they find that the older you get the more difficult it can be to conceive and carry a baby. They also find that they have become accustomed to their cushy lifestyle and are reluctant to change. Rather than enjoying the child and seeing the gift he or she is, they resent this intrusion into their lives.
  In both cases, those who choose not to have children and those who wait too long, there will come a time, when they are old, when they will regret the choices they made. They will finally see that careers, vacations and possessions are all fleeting. They are enjoyable for the moment, but have little lasting value. The man who was a Director in a company will be just another resident in the retirement village. To his company he will be just another retiree. The woman who gave up having children for a career will be just another lonely old woman looking with envy on all the grandparents enjoying their families. Those who had one or two children late in life and then gave them to someone else to raise so they could continue their career, will bemoan the fact that their children are not close to them; they don't call or visit.
  Raising children is not easy. It can be difficult and challenging at times. And sacrifices have to be made. But nothing gives as much joy as watching a child grow and develop; seeing the results of your time, effort and sacrifices. And the investment you make in a child has lasting rewards. They do not fade or end but only get better with age.
  The ancient ones were very wise. Children are a gift from the Lord; the fruit of the womb is a reward.

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