Providence and Kids

Dear Jack,

One thing that Lydia and I have gone out of our way not to hide is the fact that our first baby, Adrianna Faith, was a big surprise to us.  We find it humorous the extent that other couples go through to hide the fact that they had an “oops.”  We embrace it (although we did not at first).  God’s timing is ultimately better than any timing we could dream up of, so if He deems fit it’s time to have a kid, we’re not going to argue anymore.

We were talking last night about future kids, and we both came to the realization that we’re going to just trust God, in a non-reckless, non-irresponsible kind of way.  I’ll spare you the details of how exactly we’re maintaining this balance, but its suffice to say that the method of birth control we were on pre-Adrianna supposedly had a significantly higher chance of conception control than the one we now use.

The reason behind this decision is four fold:

  1. Our timing stinks.  Both Lydia and I agree that if we would be on the 3-5 year plan we envisioned two years ago, we’d not be near as happy as we are now.  God’s timing always has, and always will, trump our timing, and so we’re going to relinquish a bit more of our “control” over the situation.
  2. There’s something magic about not knowing/planning.   It allows you to see God’s grace and his provision in just a bit more light.  We didn’t see this magic at first, but we see it now.  When you “plan a baby” something just doesn’t seem as right as when God tells you you’re having a baby.  This is flirting with the metaphysics of determinism and free will, which I have no desire of delving into right now, so I’ll end this point right here.
  3. Ready will never come.  One of the ways Lydia and I were going to judge when we were “ready” to have a kid is when we had enough money.  Ha.  What a joke.  Who can possibly imagine putting a quantitative money on when enough is enough for a kid?  Or even more slippery: when you’ll feel it’s enough.  I’ll borrow from Rockefeller and answer with “One dollar more.”  We also thought we’d judge when we were ready by our marriage strength and our “readiness” to sacrifice our time.  Again, both are comical when we look back – but it’s honestly how we felt.  We’ll let God be the judge of when HE thinks we’re “ready” from now on.  Was Sarah “ready” at age 90?  What about Mary at age 16?
  4. The pain of not being able to produce when you want to produce is infinitely larger than producing when you didn’t want to.  This is a perception based on a number of families that I know, as we obviously haven’t been confronted with the former scenario, but I can’t imagine it not being true.  How painful would that be when you’ve become financially, maritally, and emotionally “ready” and then have to wait 1, 2, 3, 5, 10, infinite amount of years to become pregnant?  Wow.  I’m actually quite certain it takes the same amount of faith in either situation, but again, let’s just leave it in God’s hands.

The flip side of the coin is what I mentioned about not being reckless about it.  It’s one thing to drive on the Autobahn at 150 mph with no seat belt.  It’s quite another to drive I-95 in an SUV and be seat-belt restrained.  Both certainly take on elements of risk, but the one is just slightly less reckless.  Same with what we’re talking about here (again, without going into detail).  We’re taking a degree of protection and hedging against risk, but not to the extent that we previously did.  It’s a delicate balance on two planes: responsibility/recklessness and trusting/stiff necked-ness.  It’s also an emotional and spiritual frame of mind, equally as much as it is physically.

Adrianna is going to be 8 months old next month, and we’re beginning the discussions of adoption from a third world country.  At what age will it be best to raise all these kids?  Who knows?  Not us, that’s for sure.  But God does, and we’ll leave it to Him to decide these things.  Till next time, Jack.

Sincerely,
J.

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