(Tim) Things are quiet here at the church-house. It's New Year's Eve and I've been doing odd jobs in between reading Christmas cards and letters that piled up the past few weeks.
Just now, I finished my second letter in a row from friends with lots of children--one family with eight and the other nine. And last night, we sat and talked through the evening with our dear friends, David and Jill Crum, who are in town to visit their six sons now living here in Bloomington. David and Jill have been blessed by God with eleven children--ten sons and one daughter.
These are happy, happy families God has used to propagate a godly seed for His Own glory. And not one of the mothers or fathers cast a longing eye at other believers who chose money, career, or status over another child. They're all poor, and they're all joyful. Trust me. (If you want to test it, send me a private e-mail and I'll put you in touch with them so you may ask them yourself.)
So here's the New Year's Resolution I'm so impertinent as to suggest, dear brothers and sisters. Why not follow these three pastors and their godly wives and dedicate this coming year to being fruitful and multiplying? To propagating a godly seed. To making love and life, both at the same time? And if you and your wife are not able to have children, take in foster children or adopt a child.
What could you expect if you did so...
First, you could expect to be sanctified. Marriage and the bearing and rearing of children is a superb school of sanctification.
Second, every other blessing you could imagine. Here's how one of my closest friends sums up the work of fatherhood as he and his wife entered their empty nest years this past year:
The last few years he was with us, Dad Bayly regularly told us that, as he looked back, the thing that gave him the greatest joy in his life was his children. Brothers and sisters, nothing comes close to the joy and rewards of being faithful in this work. So this year, raise the roof beam and spread the tent walls.