Posts Tagged ‘parenthood’

To my Heavenly Father

February 19, 2010

Lord, I was thinking about how it must break Your heart that so many of Your children ignore You.  I know how sad I would feel, if after giving my very best to my children, they would ignore me.  Yet I am often guilty of the same thing with You.  So often on busy days, I give up quality time with You.  This is the last thing I should do, when I wouldn’t have a life at all if it weren’t for You.  Not only that, but time with You, pouring out my thoughts and feelings, and then listening to You, fills me with peace.  Thank You Lord, for the gift of Yourself.  Thank You for having children and caring for them.  I wouldn’t exist if You had not done that.  Thank You that you never stop thinking about me even when I’m not thinking about You.

“Gods Will”

February 17, 2010

A friend lost her husband this month and someone said “God’s will.”  Another person has cancer and may die of it and someone says “Maybe thats God’s will.”  And so I realize that for me “God’s will” has taken on a very negative sound.  I sure don’t want God’s will in my life.  But what am I saying?

I think of my own parenthood.  I think of Christmas morning and how I enjoyed the delight in my children’s faces when they opened something they really wanted .  I wouldn’t give them coupons for braces for their teeth, glasses, orthopedic shoes and medical procedures.  Oh yes, I’ve given them all these things too, because they were necessary.  But it was hard for me, and I held them and helped them through it.  My real joy was giving them things to delight them.  If thats true for me, how very much more it must be true for God.  How He must enjoy delighting his children.  How He must enjoy delighting me.

How to Save Marriage and the Nation

June 15, 2008

The foregoing series of articles shows how marriage, stable families with both a mother and a father, and having children are essential to a healthy nation.  What has to happen so that marriage and the family–and America–can be saved.

1.   As a society, we have to begin to value the family.  Starting with “no fault” divorce, the family has taken all the hits in favor of individual freedom.  We have to begin, as a society, to value the institution of the family as something that benefits every single one of us.  We have to realize that a family and a family line are something worthwhile and worth sacrificing to achieve.   We have to realize that individual freedom doesn’t exist in a vacuum, that freedom comes with responsibility because each of our individual choices affects the society we live in.

2.  We must value children.  We must begin to believe, truly, that children are good for us.  They teach us as much as we teach them.  They grow us and mature us as people.  They become a real asset in our lives as they grow into adulthood.  It must be recognized that our societies tendency to see children as a nuisance and an expense is very, very shortsighted.  In that vein, it would be useful to resurrect the concept of selfishness, which seems to have been forgotten.

3.  We need to value heritage and generational families.  As we value the young, we must also value the old.  As we show love to our parents and grandparents, we teach our children the value of family, of love, faithfulness and care.  It innoculates them to living solely for “self-fulfillment”.  They will never find the love and security of family life in any career or pursuit. Maintaining close relationships within the family offers security to each generation, and is an antidote to all the anxiety, lack of identity and frantic activity of the world outside the family circle.

4.  We need to value domestic life.  Quiet evenings and weekends within the family circle, with time to really talk to each other are to be cherished.  Nights and weekends of frantic activity don’t satisfy the need to just be together and leave children overstimulated and undernourished.  Hopefully, as the price of fuel rises, families will “just stay home”, and find their fun and their joy there.

5.  We need to teach the above values through the schools and the media.  After all, we taught the materialistic, hedonistic, striving  values we have now.  We taught kids to fight for stuff and “success” (whatever that means) and to devalue people and relationships.

6.  We might consider government benefits to make the financial costs of raising children easier, but as has been seen in the Scandinavian countries, generous benefits don’t raise the birthrate very much.

7.  We need to do everything possible to promote stable marriages.  We need to make fatherhood (and motherhood) heroic in the public eye.  We need to keep fathers involved with their children. 

8.  We need to teach kids from the earliest grades how to communicate and how to nurture relationships.  We  need to teach them as much about living together and being a family as we teach them about sex–in fact, we need to teach family living a whole lot more.

9.  We need to get off the “self-fulfillment” bandwagon as a nation and go back to the idealistic days of “doing good”.  We turned “self-fulfillment” into narcissism, and we need to be heroic again.

10.  So far I have made no reference at all to religious belief.  While many have denounced the motives of pro-family advocates as “intolerance” and “religious bigotry”, it is quite plain that pro-family values show a benefit to children and the society.  Religious people believe God invented marriage.  In that case, God knew better than we do, what is good for us.  If God had been silent, the wisest among us should have invented pro-family values ourselves.

What Ultimately Happens When Marriage Dies

June 15, 2008

Separating parenthood from the protection of traditional marriage has repercussions.  Sweden was the groundbreaker for many forms of non-traditional marriage.  Today in Sweden the marriage rate is only one third of what it was in the 1940’s.  Sixty percent of all first children are born to non-married couples.  Since these couples break up at two or three tiems the rate of married couples, this makes the children of these relationships a very high risk for the fluidity that causes problems. 

Sweden is a socialist state with many government incentives to have children.  Mothers are able to take paid leave of absence of 12 months when they have a baby.  They can return to their jobs at 3/4 time for the next 7 years!  The government makes up the difference.  Dads can take a 3 month leave of absence at full pay.  Still, despite all the incentives, the Swedish birthrate is only 1.75 per woman.  It needs to be 2.1 at least to maintain population replacement.  Lacking a cultural value placed on family making, the government can’t even pay people to have enough children.  Where the values in a culture are placed on individual fulfillment and where marriage and parenthood are separated, the rates of both marriage and parenthood fall.

America stands about 20 years behind Sweden, and is definitely on the same downward path.  The marriage rate here is also falling and the out of wedlock pregnancy is rising.  The overall birthrate is falling here, as well.  Gay marriage is beginning to be accepted, further eroding the link between marriage and parenting.  The society is aging with the “birth dearth”, making us an older, less energetic, less growth-producing society.  The most productive age group is becoming a smaller portion of the whole, and definitely smaller in relationship to the older “entitlement” group of adults.  The economy will slow and contract as taxes to support the entittled take away from revenue that would support growth.  The nation will become less wealthy than it is today.