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Large Families

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This week I am talking about the blessing of children. As you may know, January 22 is the 37th anniversary of the legalization of abortion in America.

There is a growing movement afoot that encourages couples to continue to have children long past the average 2 or 3. Many are part of the Quiverfull movement, and others have simply made a personal decision to allow God to dictate the size of their family. Either way, they are not without their attackers.

Recently, I was following the story of Michelle Duggar's 18th baby, which was a premature birth. While scanning online news sources, I was surprised at the number of senseless comments following the articles.

One of the silliest was that "a woman's body wasn't designed to have that many children!" Seriously, folks. No comment needed.

Another comment was that "it's selfish for people to have that many children when there are so many orphans in the world who need to be adopted." I think this is something that most people aren't really thinking through very well.

The number of couples willing to have large families is a relatively small percentage of the American population. However, there are many, many couples who adopt orphans because A) they are unable to have biological children, or B) because they care about the needs of orphans and want to bring them into their family.

One other comment was that overpopulation is bad for the environment. Don't EVEN go there. I've already shared my thoughts on going green, so I'll address this one later.

My point is: there are families for every situation. There are those who adopt, and those who have many babies, and then there are some who do both! I personally know a few families in each category.

It's actually a very unselfish thing to have many children. If you think about the reasons for limiting the number of children in a family, it's usually about what's good for the parents. Now, I apologize if I'm stepping on toes, here, but if we're honest with ourselves, deep down, we know that's true. Even I've dealt with that too many times. I am completely committed to having as many children as God will give me, but there are times when I think, "Oh, when will I have a clean floor again?" or "Now that baby is potty trained, do I want to do THAT all over again?"

My family isn't large compared to some large families, but I still get looks and comments when all 6 of us go somewhere in public together. It's amazing the insensitive comments people make within the hearing of my children. It's as if the kids are already a burden to their thought process, and apparently they're deaf, too. I try to answer each comment with something positive, like "My older girls make great big sisters" or "Little boys are very entertaining."

Large families can teach us many things. From some of the large families I know, I've learned convenient scheduling techniques, recipes for feeding a crowd, tips on frugality, and especially the joy that many children bring. I have several real-life friends with large families, and I follow a few great blogs authored by those brave mothers of many; they include: Raising Arrows, Smockity Frocks, Raising Olives, and Large Family Mothering. I've been inspired, convicted, and repeatedly entertained by these amazing families!

While you're here, check out my other blog: Prairie Sense, where I love to ramble about all things Little House.


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