The Blessing of Children

Breaking the Faith Barrier

 

Let Us Highly Resolve - By: David Quine, Shirley Quine

[The following is from the book Let Us Highly Resolve; Families Living for Christ in the 21st Century, by David and Shirley Quine, pages 19-22]

We already had five children. Their ages were eight, six, twins that were four, and a one-year-old. Shirley was teaching our children at home, which was very demanding, while I was working several jobs. We were living in a small three bedroom house in a suburb of Dallas, Texas. Having come from a small family myself, I was exhausted and felt that there was ‘no room in the inn’ with no vacancy in the near future.

I thought to myself: How could God be so inconsiderate as to make us live in such close quarters? Had He not said that He would meet all our needs? Didn’t that include housing? If God wanted us to have more children, then first He would have to provide more space! Besides weren’t we out of step with culture as it was? We had something like 2.75 times the national average! Even those within the Church wondered if we knew the basic ‘facts of life.’

 Shirley and I had heard many times that only two things will go into eternity: God’s Word and people. But for us to have more children seemed like going just a little bit too far. I had reached a barrier in my life.

During World War II, airplanes had approached but not broken the sound barrier. Many had tried, but all were turned back. It was not until October 14, 1947 that General Chuck Yeager was able to break the sound barrier in the X-1 rocket research plane. This new breakthrough propelled the aerospace industry to new heights.

Though I was not at the sound barrier, I found myself at the faith barrier. Would I go on or be turned back? I could not envision how we could possibly make enough money to support more children. We were just barely making it as it was. I also wondered where we would put more children if we had more. God would have to change my circumstances first. Then I would consider whether to trust Him in this area was my attitude. My map was distorted. I was attempting to maneuver and manipulate God…

…Since God knows all possible combinations of outcomes and all consequences of all possible decisions, and since nothing is allowed to touch our lives that He does not first pass through His hands, then He can be trusted for moment-by-moment circumstances in our daily lives.

How thankful I am that He did not give to us a larger house at once as we prayed. How often I look back to this sign post in my life and think to myself, “It’s just like it was in that time in my life: God, I am sure, is going to arrange it all so much better than I know how to. God is going to do something far better still.” God has used stories like these [the author had previously quoted a portion from the book Heidi] to help correct and to redraw my map, my picture of life. They help me gain perspective–God’s perfect perspective on what He is trying to do in my own life. In our dining room we recently placed the MANUSCRIPTURE: For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future (Jeremiah 29:11).

After Blaine’s [the author’s small son] persistence of more than six months, I finally agreed that if he would pray [for a baby brother] I would listen. God was making some headway with me. It was not long afterwards that I too joined in and began praying with him. About nine months later our fourth son, Byron, was born. God had answered Blaine’s prayer. It was a double miracle. He had answered Blaine’s prayer and He had changed my life. I was learning to ‘look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen’–not in our temporal home and circumstances in which we were living but in the eternal value of our children.

However, God did not stop there. Since that time, He has given us Bethany, Bonney, and most recently Brett. Can you believe it? We now have nine children and until just recently we lived in the same three-bedroom house. I found the idea expressed be Rees Howells regarding those to whom he was ministering had become my heart attitude: “After many hard experiences we found the resting place. We became like waiters serving in a restaurant; it wasn’t our business whether ten, fifteen or twenty would come, we knew the Manager would not fail to provide what was needed. We told the Lord to send as many as He liked!” By refocusing my attention, God was teaching me to walk by faith at a totally new level. I had broken the faith barrier.

Breaking the faith barrier. That’s what it takes to accept more children, usually. God knows our particular situation, what we can handle, and all possible outcomes of all possible decisions. If we can trust Him for our eternal salvation, can we not also trust Him to care for us if we leave our family planning up to Him?

Yes, it feels counter-intuitive to “let go of the wheel.” It feels like stepping off a cliff, or jumping into the deep end of a pool. But, let’s be consistent. Either we can trust God in everything, or we can’t. Which is it? How many of us are willing to step out into the unknown and live by faith in this area?

I pray almost every day for a movement of God’s hand that would cause His people to love and want children like He does, and to let go of their birth control, and let Him control birth and conception instead.

 

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8 thoughts on “Breaking the Faith Barrier

  1. Three things jumped out at me in this article. First, I’ve never thought about the only two things that will be in heaven from our time here on earth is the Word and people. That just blew my mind! Wow! The 2nd is that God used this man’s son’s desire for a baby brother, and they both prayed.Oh my! What a special answer to prayer! Brings tears to my eyes. Lastly, is letting go of the wheel. My child bearing days are past, but what an amazing thing it would have been for my husband and I to have let go of the wheel, living in faith and not fear. The Lord may have not given us any more children, but at least we would have known it was His decision and not ours.
    I think that this area can be hard especially if husband and wife aren’t in agreement. I’ve known several moms of 1 or 2 children that really desired to have more children and their husbands very adamantly said no. The fact that this man in the article opened up honestly, let go of his fear and experienced faith on a whole new level is a wonderful testament to his role as godly leader of his family.

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      1. I want to add a quick p.s. 🙂 I’m 48, so physically, I’m still within my childbearing years. It would be an act of God for me to conceive, though. I also don’t want my comments to seem ungrateful. We’ve been incredibly blessed with our family. I have small regrets about ending our childbearing, but I’m not wallowing in the land of regret. At this point, my house is still full, and I’m busy serving them and my church family. God is so good!

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  2. “I’m not wallowing in the land of regret”–yes, that’s right, we shouldn’t allow ourselves to live in regret. Though it IS important to recognize where we’ve made mistakes, admit/confess them, and do any damage repair necessary, we must not wallow in regret after we’ve already done all that.
    I’m happy that I don’t have to regret cutting off our fertility! But, there have been other things in my life that I have NOT done right; it’s been hard for me to let go of those mistakes (the regret caused by those mistakes). However, that regret doesn’t get me anywhere. I’ve already repented, confessed to those appropriate, and done my best to repair the damage. There’s only one thing to do after that: move on.
    Thanks for your comment, Ruthie! And no, I did not ever think that you were ungrateful! No worries 🙂
    Jessica

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  3. Love this quote! I can’t remember if I’ve read their book or not before. I agree, it’s very much a struggle to trust God in this area – especially since most of us have been taught from childhood (by the CHURCH, of all things) that it is irresponsible to have more than one or two children. We’re not just up against our own fears, but the culture as well.

    I don’t regret giving God lordship in this area at all – but I do regret the years before we did so. I know that we would have one or two more children now than we do, and the sad thing is that we can’t get those children back. It’s like having an abortion – regrets can’t get back a child who was rejected. I do my best to mend and move on, like Ruthie said above, but that’s a regret that will always be there.

    I have about four of your posts up on tabs in my browser – I’m a very slow reader these days, but I’ll get to them!! 🙂

    Diana

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    1. I can totally relate to that, Diana! I have also thought, “What about the children we might have had during the time we used birth control?–now we’ll never know what we’re missing!”
      I also agree about us not being up against our own fears, but up against the teaching of the church, and the culture, as well. It is so frustrating to be facing such deeply-entrenched lies! I feel like a want to stand on the top of someplace very high, and shout at the top of my lungs, “Don’t you all see how you’re doing the opposite of what God wants?” But, realistically, that wouldn’t work anyway, because people only hear what they WANT to hear. I was that way, too, for awhile.
      Anyways, I’m in the process of updating my NFP post (there were some things I realized later on that I needed to add, and to clarify). If you read it on my site, you’ll get the updated version, maybe a little later today. 🙂
      Thanks,
      Jessica

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      1. I started out as the world’s biggest birth control advocate (seriously), so I totally know – from personal experience – how deeply difficult it is to reach people who are in the grip of deeply-entrenched lies (i.e. the birth control mentality). It took me years to even consider that my viewpoint might not be entirely 100% right on that subject. The church itself is deeply immersed in the birth control mentality – and it takes so much longer for institutions to reconsider their sacred cows than for individuals!

        Thanks for writing on this!

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      2. I think that it is only the Spirit of God that can take a blind man (or woman) and make him see! We are so good at believing our own lies, not to mention the lies of others. The Bible does say that ever-increasing deception would be a mark of the end times, and we’re caught up in the tangle. God would like for all of us to live free, however (the truth will set you free, but whoever sins is a slave to sin). We resist the truth, kind of like the Pharisees did, who wouldn’t allow anyone to contradict them, not even God! It really does take an act of mercy for us to see the truth and change course. I pray for all Christians almost every day, for that to happen.
        Jessica

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