I understand that there is a curiosity and many, many myths about large families. So, I thought I would share my heart and mind on the matter so that it can be filed away here on my blog for reference should anyone be interested...haha.
People are usually surprised to find that I was not raised in a large family myself. I was raised with two brothers and that was an average family at the time.
The Calling: For me, having a large family is a calling that the Lord put in my heart as a young child. Ask anyone who knew me as a child and they will tell you that I have always loved babies and children. I believe that it is a calling just the way that individuals are called to go on the mission field. This is my mission field and I rarely have to eat gross things...haha. It does change the perspective when you look at your life calling as your mission field...whatever it is that God has called you to do with the life He gave you.
The Scriptures: I believe that it is wise to always line things up against Scripture. I would not be dogmatic about the "large family" issue as I know there are many passionate answers on both sides of the question. But, as I search scripture, I honestly can't find any place where we are commanded to have many children. Some verses could be interpreted that way, but I think they are taken out of context. Just as we aren't all called to leave family, friends, and country to share the gospel in other countries, so not everyone is called to have many children. But, I am forever grateful that I get to be one of the few that are called to have many children and reap the wonderful blessings that accompany the calling!
The Heart: I believe that like so many other things, it comes down to the heart. What is our heart on the matter. There was a time when I thought I might not be able to have children. I had to come to the place in my heart where I was surrendered to God on this and willing to live my life with no children, if that was His will for me.
So, on any issue, I ask myself, "Is my heart open to what God is calling me to do?". Or, do I have a list of things that I will not do, places that I will not go, and people to whom I will not minister. Do I have an open heart to what God wants for my life and am I willing to wholeheartedly embrace His plan whether it is few children, many children, or no children?
The Societal Myth and the Blessing: Modern society puts little value on children and even less value on sacrificing self for children or posterity (or sacrificing for anything else for that matter). We have become a generation of "me first" and immediate gratification. Some of the things that have the longest lasting results and the most blessing require sacrifice and time. We are learning this with finances as we go through Financial Peace University. In much the same way, the time and sacrifice that we put into our children will produce amazing things...in a generation...and we are hoping for compound interest...haha! So, I am looking toward the future as I have kids and not the here and now...or even the next ten years.
I would also turn around modern culture's questions and instead of asking "Why have more children?", I would ask "Why NOT have more children?". The reason leads back to the heart. Is it so that I can get my nails done, have lunch with girl friends, or have more things? These are all amoral things but it is our heart that makes them good or bad. Have I put anything above God's desire for my life. If so, then that thing is now an idol in my life. It can be wanting something...or not wanting something. The Bible teaches that children are a blessing and we are to view them as such. So, I am just living my life and doing what God has called me to do...and loving all the little ones that He has entrusted me to raise!
One last thing that I would like to say on this topic is that both husband and wife need to come to a mutual agreement when it comes to having children (and everything else too). I believe strongly that God never calls a person to do something that He hasn't called their spouse to do as well...or at least be in agreement...but that is another post altogether.