Elliana Beth

My  twelfth grandchild has arrived. I am so in love with this precious bundle. I never get enough of the new babies even though I get to see most of them every day for the first weeks of their life.

I love her name, don’t you? It means “God has answered me”. It makes me weepy to write that. She will have a testimony her whole life just by her name alone.

My sweet and godly son-in-law spent 52 days praying intentionally for a matter close to his heart this spring. While he and my daughter had the baby name discussion, they looked for a name that referenced prayer and how faithful God is to the desires of our hearts.

Elliana is their sixth child, and hopefully, not the last. As you can imagine their family size draws attention. We get the whole gamut of comments. Most recently, “Are you a cult?”  There are cute videos out there about the comments that we get. This is my favorite: Family of Twelve

Why do we have large families? We think it is scripturally mandated. At least to us, it is our purpose. We want the opportunity to train many children to love and serve the Lord Jesus Christ. Then we want them to share Him with others as they mature. We think of ourselves as missionary trainees, if you will.  Few of them will go to a third world; but we want all of them seeking to share the Gospel.

That is the first and foremost reason. Then there is the adorable factor. Aren’t babies just the most beautiful creations? I know there are a few of you who think newborns look like a potato or a dinosaur turtle. You are just wrong! Even when their sin nature fully shows itself, for my children that was somewhere around the 12th hour, kids are just cute. They say the funniest things. They love in the most pure way. They are more open to receiving Christ as Savior than adults. I could go on!

God speaks to our hearts through the Bible on this subject. This is one of our favorite Psalms. You will see in verse 3 another reason we want the blessing of a large family.

Psalm 127

1 Unless the Lord builds the house,
    those who build it labor in vain.
Unless the Lord watches over the city,
    the watchman stays awake in vain.
It is in vain that you rise up early
    and go late to rest,
eating the bread of anxious toil;
    for he gives to his beloved sleep.

Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord,
    the fruit of the womb a reward.
Like arrows in the hand of a warrior
    are the children of one’s youth.
Blessed is the man
    who fills his quiver with them!
He shall not be put to shame
    when he speaks with his enemies in the gate.

 

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