Friday, April 04, 2008
Large families are cool
I wrote this over two years ago. I think I was a tad frustrated while walking this life in a large family when there are people in this world who think we are freaks because of it. I just thought I would share it again.
Deuteronomy 26:11 says, "And you shall rejoice in every good thing which the Lord your God has given to you and your household."
Large families are great, they really are! The Bible says that God puts the solitary in families. You are never lonely...you always have someone to talk to, to laugh with, to cuddle with at night when its raining outside, or you are afraid of the dark. You will never be without a pair of shoes because you can always wear your big brothers. Bath times cease to be a time of cleansing yourself but now they are big, rowdy party where the entire floor gets drenched.
Every meal is a feast because there are so many mouths to feed and everyone likes a bit of variety...and if your brother didn't eat his food you get to take his plate over. When someone falls down and cries, there is someone around to call mama or daddy or just give you a hug. Going out shopping is fun because you get to freak everyone out as they stand there and stare with mouths open, counting all the heads and looking at your mother like, "Is she crazy or is she on a field trip with the daycare?"
There is always someone there when you need commiseration, when you want to gang up on another sibling and give them a wedgie, or when you want to stage a battle royale/cage fight and try to beat up daddy on the trampoline. Even during the tough times when you are sick, there usually is another brother or sister sick with you as you share the vapors from the humidifier or when mom gives you some nasty herbal concoction. Its cool that there is usually someone willing to build a fort out of blankets with you and bring your flashlight to tell scary stories. Even though there are plenty of sibs, daddy isn't deterred from taking you all out on an adventure, roller skating and bike riding through the neighborhood or the river bottom. And when you want to climb the fence and enjoy one of your neighbor's tangerines, you will always have a look-out man watching your back for mama or the neighbor.
In the event you've done wrong and need correction and its spanking time, there is usually someone lined up after you to get their fair share of correction so you don't feel like the only one is the world going through it.
You also develop the invaluable skill of concentrating in the midst of chaos and pretty soon you don't even hear any screaming, crying, rumbling, tumbling or yelling while you are reading, watching a good movie or talking on the phone. You also learn to cooperate with others, to think of others first, to pray for your brother when he is sick, to wait on the things you think you want, to entertain yourself, to be creative because you don't have cable TV and video games.
God loves large families. He wants His heavenly kingdom full of people or why else would He say He has a mansion waiting for us? Psalms talks about having a wife as a fruitful vine and your children like olive plants around the table...do you think there are only 1.5 olives on every branch? Nope, a good vine is bursting with fruit and ripe for the harvest.
So the next time you see a mother with several children in tow trying to keep them in line at the market, letting them blow off some steam at the park or trying to corral them all into their classes at sunday school, don't look down your nose at her or feel sorry for her or wonder if she has lost her mind.
Understand that she is blessed. That all those gorgeous, creative, healthy children will be there to care for her and her husband when they are old, that she enjoys being at home caring for her children, that she delights in seeing their crying and happy faces, that she has a husband over her that cherishes and protects her, that their home rings with laughter, praises, comfort, joy and love.