Thursday, October 25, 2007

Raising 4 children

I got this in an email today, very fitting for my life lately! :)
My husband and I had been happily (most of the time) married for
five years but hadn't been blessed with a baby. I decided to do some
serious praying and promised God that if he would give us a child, I
would be a perfect mother, love it with all my heart and raise it
with his word as my guide.
God answered my prayers and blessed us with a son. The next year God
blessed us with another son. The following year, he blessed us with
yet another son. The year after that we were blessed with a
My husband thought we'd been blessed right into poverty. We now had
four children, and the oldest was only four years old. I learned
never to ask God for anything unless I meant it. As a minister once
told me, "If you pray for rain, make sure you carry an umbrella."
I began reading a few verses of the Bible to the children each day
as they lay in their cribs. I was off to a good start. God had
entrusted me with four children and I didn't want to disappoint him.
I tried to be patient the day the children smashed two dozen eggs on
the kitchen floor searching for baby chicks.
I tried to be under standing when they started a hotel for homeless
frogs in the spare bedroom, although it took me nearly two hours to
catch all twenty-three frogs.
When my daughter poured ketchup all over herself and rolled up in a
blanket to see how it felt to be a hot dog, I tried to see the humor
rather than the mess. In spite of changing over twenty-five thousand
diapers, never eating a hot meal and never sleeping for more than
thirty minutes at a time, I still thank God daily for my children.
While I couldn't keep my promise to be a perfect mother - I didn't
even come close - I did keep my promise to raise them in the Word of
I knew I was missing the mark just a little when I told my
daughter we were going to church to worship God, and she wanted to
bring a bar of soap along to "wash up" Jesus, too.
Something was lost in the translation when I explained that God gave
us everlasting life, and my son thought it was generous of God to
give us his "last wife."
My proudest moment came during the children's Christmas pageant. My
daughter was playing Mary, two of my sons were shepherds and my
youngest son was a wise man. This was their moment to shine.
My five-year-old shepherd had practiced his line, "We found the babe
wrapped in swaddling clothes." But he was nervous and said, "The
baby was wrapped in wrinkled clothes." My four-year-old "Mary" said,
"That's not 'wrinkled clothes,' silly. That's dirty, rotten
A wrestling match broke out between Mary and the shepherd and was
stopped by an angel, who bent her halo and lost her left wing. I
slouched a little lower in my seat when Mary dropped the doll
representing Baby Jesus, and it bounced down the aisle crying,
"Mama-mama." Mary grabbed the doll, wrapped it back up and held it
tightly as the wise men arrived.
My other son stepped forward wearing a bathrobe and a paper crown,
knelt at the manger and announced, "We are the three wise men, and
we are bringing gifts of gold, common sense and fur."
The congregation dissolved into laughter, and the pageant got a
standing ovation. "I've never enjoyed a Christmas program as much as
this one," laughed the pastor, wiping tears from his eyes. "For the
rest of my life, I'll never hear the Christmas story without
thinking of gold, common sense and fur."
"My children are my pride and my joy and my greatest blessing," I
said as I dug through my purse for an aspirin.

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