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Are my hands full?

So I’m wondering about something—maybe you friends and lurkers can help me out a little. When in the world did having children ever become such a burden in society? I mean honestly. I recently read a book that said in a church service if an adult is coughing loudly or making some other noise, it is perfectly acceptable. BUT, should a baby or small child be “disruptive” it is considered rude, and very often the parents are asked to take the child out of the service. Did Jesus not say “let the LITTLE CHILDREN come to Me?” I’m confused.

Now, I know that I may look a little strange. We live in a small town and don’t really have any helpers around to take care of my brood when I need to run an errand. So, every time grocery shopping needs to be done (which is at least 4 times a week), I have no choice but to take my kids with me. I usually get one of those HUGE Walmart carts—the one with the extra seats. The greeters at the door actually know me now—they see me coming and head to the back of the cart-storage area and get MY cart. I can fit AT LEAST 3-4 kids in that thing. Okay, so they probably sit in it for all of five minutes, but at least we start out well. Halfway through the shopping trip no one is sitting in it and I end up having to navigate that bus around the store 🙂 But oh well.

So, we head around Walmart and get the things we need. I’m not kidding, at least 5 times someone will comment on how I have “my hands full”. Actually, most of the time they don’t even have to say a word—I have come to know “the look” I get—you know, the one that says, “Shame…that poor woman” without even saying a word 🙂 What in the world! Do people honestly think that I am completely miserable because we have CHOSEN to have a few more children than the average family size? Our family is not even THAT big. Yesterday Connor, our 9 year old, said “mom, why does everyone say that?” Good point son.

(Now, let me say that I know that people mean well, and I know their comments are said just to be nice, most of the time.)

It just gets me thinking—why does society see children as “hard work”. For me, children are the greatest blessing that God could ever have given Anthony and I. I just cannot imagine my life any other way than it is right now. I feel like I am living out my calling in this life—to be the mother to many children. Have I always been this way—NO WAY! I never imagined I would have more than two children. When Connor was born I started counting down the days to when I could put him in school so that I could have my “life” back. Then God changed my heart.

How can we ever say NO to the Lord if He wants to add a child to our family? How can we ever say, “Sorry Lord, my hands are too full already God”, or “Give the child to someone else God, I am just too busy right now”. How could we ever turn away God’s good gifts? I read of a family adopting a 15 year old Russian boy. The family already has 8 children. The Russian boy (who is with the family on a Medical Visa) asked the Dad why he would want another son when he already had 8 other children. The dad’s answer was beautiful, he said “if you already have a lot of gold and someone comes to you and offers you more gold, would you turn it down and say no thanks?” Children are the Father’s gold—how can we ever turn His good gifts away?

As God has added children to our family and given us a heart for adoption, we have come to realize that adoption for us is so much more than just adding another child to our family. Yes, having the new child is such a blessing. But, knowing that the child will hear the Word of God and someday come to know Him personally is so absolutely rewarding. It has been such an amazing journey. Knowing that the children we have raised will, someday, go out into the world and be ambassadors for Christ is what having children is all about for me. I have them for such a short time, then they will be gone! I hate the thought.

Are my hands full? Yes—but full of God’s beautiful and amazing gifts. Would I ever turn away God’s gold? Never. I guess we’ll just have to get used to the comments.