“Blessings or Burdens; What Will Your Kids Believe?”

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Episode Summary

Make sure your children grow up believing children are a blessing because of their own experiences in your home.

We all know that the Bible teaches that children are a blessing, but will your children believe that by what they experience in your home? When your children are adults will they live that out because of what’s been experientially instilled in them? Too many children launch into the world believing wrong on this, which has major consequences on how they view themselves and how they raise their own families. The good news is, it’s never too late to shift your influence on this and shift the future outcomes. Tune in to be encouraged to raise the next generation well!

Main Points From This Episode:

  • What do you believe and does your parenting align with your beliefs?
  • It’s good to meditate on what the word of God says about children
  • It’s important to expose the lies coming from the world
  • We have to be careful about the worldly perspective that children are a burden seeping into the church
  • Just because you believe children are a blessing; it doesn’t mean that’s what your children are experiencing. It’s good to have a good marriage conversation about this and even ask your children.

Scripture From This Episode:

Matthew 12:34 – “You brood of vipers! How can you speak good, when you are evil? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.”

Genesis 1:28 – “And God blessed them. And God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it, and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”

Psalm 127: 1-5 –Unless the Lord builds the house, those who build it labor in vain. Unless the Lord watches over the city, the watchman stays awake in vain. It is in vain that you rise up early and go late to rest, eating the bread of anxious toil; for he gives to his beloved sleep. Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them. He shall not be put to shame when he speaks with his enemies in the gate.”

Proverbs 17:6 –Grandchildren are the crown of the aged, and the glory of children is their fathers.”

3 John 1:4 – “I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth.”

Matthew 18:1-3 –At that time the disciples came to Jesus, saying, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” And calling to him a child, he put him in the midst of them and said, “Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.”

Matthew 18:10 – “See that you do not despise one of these little ones. For I tell you that in heaven their angels always see the face of my Father who is in heaven.”

1 John 1:8-10 –If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.”

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Full Transcript:

Note: This is an automated transcript and misspells or grammar errors may be present.

Welcome to Courageous Parenting Podcast, a weekly show to equip parents with biblical truth on raising confident Christian kids in an uncertain world.

Hi, I’m Angie from Courageous Mom.

And I’m Isaac from Resolute Man.

We’ve been married for 21 years and have seen the fruit from raising our eight kids biblically. Based on the raw truth found in the Bible.

We can no longer let the culture win the hearts of children. Too many children from Christian families are walking away from their faith by age 18. And it doesn’t have to be this way. It shouldn’t be this way. Join us as we start an important conversation about effective parenting and a following on. Hey, Welcome, everybody.

Hi, guys.

Glad you’re back. Good to have you here if your first time. Welcome.

Hey, you guys. Today we have an awesome topic. We are going to be talking about blessings or burdens. What will your kids believe? That’s what we have titled today’s podcast.

Wow, such a powerful topic. And it was really revealed to us how this resonated with people because of a recent post that did really well. And what that tells us is, wow, this is hitting people’s hearts. Yeah. And so this needs further explanation.

Well, and even in the comments, there were a couple of people that had asked some questions or just brought some things up that they had either experienced or seen themselves that would potentially contribute to children not feeling like they’re a burden when they’re being raised in your home. And so we wanted to have a longer conversation than what obviously like social media, a social media post would allow us to have. Right? Yeah. But we’re just going to let’s start out by maybe reading the post. Sure. You guys can kind of see what we’re talking about in the Post. It said, Make sure your children grow up believing children are a blessing because of their own experience in your home. Now, this was pretty incredible because this post went viral. I mean, as more viral than any of our other posts.

I think like over 3000 people liked it. 10,100 people shared it, Over 600 people saved it. Yeah. It was just it really resonated. Lots of questions. I even followed up with an insta story asking, Hey, why did this resonate with you? Because I was really curious and it was neat to get people’s responses.

Well, and I loved what you wrote in the caption. So that was what was in the image. And then in the caption, You and I had talked about this and you wrote Perfect Parents don’t Exist, But we should all look for ways to grow and improve. Parenting is a refining process and can be discouraging at times, but you can do it. God made you their mom or dad on purpose. And then we quoted Psalm 127 three, which is Behold, children are our heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb, a reward which will go into some of that Scripture later. But I love this, and I think the other people did too, because everybody who saw this probably got convicted from some point in their parenting where they were like, Oh, I probably was making my children feel like they were a burden in that moment or whatever. Right. Like we can all relate to that.

It also some of the reasons, the feedback we got was it made people realize that they grew up and never felt like a blessing while they were growing up and how that made them feel and because of the grace of God. And when they became a believer, they started to realize not only that they are a blessing, but that their children are a blessing to.

Well, and to be honest with you, I think that when people grow up in that kind of an environment, when they get older, even when they’ve experienced redemption through Christ and they understand that their cell where their salvation is and who saved them, where their identity is, if they actually were to sit back and think of themselves, would they actually say, I’m a blessing? Like I was a I was a blessing to my parents. Like, ask yourself that question for a second. Would you actually ever say that? I think that we all are our own worst critics, and I think that we all focus most on our shortcomings, our failings, our mistakes and our sins. But we need to understand that Jesus doesn’t see us in our identity by what we do or don’t do. And this is the the most pivotal thing that we need to remember and teach our kids when we’re parenting because it actually impacts their identity in Christ as well.

And I think it’s even deeper than the teaching. While that is super important and I agree, it’s what you actually live out on a day by day basis, the marriage conversations that they overhear, the actions you take in the why or why not, you’re taking them. And what the children actually feel is a big indicator of whether or not they will see children as a blessing when they’re thinking about having their own.

Yeah, it’s interesting. It actually reminds me of a of it, something that you used to say all the time when we were doing business together, and that was perception is more important than reality sometimes.

Which is only sometimes true. Yeah, Not when it comes to biblical.

Truth, but right, right. I mean, obviously there’s a truth and there’s a reality, right? And we need to be operating in reality. But when it comes to like our relationships with other people, there’s an unspoken perception that people perceive. So, for example, if I was to meet you for the first time and we were to talk, there would be a first impression made by both me and you. And within that, a reputation starts to build of that other person, right? And that is all based upon perception. Within a conversation, you hear what people are saying, but sometimes people have a hard time hearing what other people are saying, the way that they mean it. And so they take things wrong, too. Right. And so that’s why communication can get tricky. And it’s so important that we are communicating clearly with our kids and often reminding them that we love them.

It’s so important. And now that we have our first grandchild, it all hits home real personal to us in such a good way that we’re so thankful that of what our children have picked up from what they picked up in our home, that children are a blessing. We’re seeing. We’re seeing the fruit of that. And it’s amazing. And we just want that for everybody. We don’t want that. The feeling of regret because children launch and they either become unbelievers or they’re believers that really don’t want to have children, or they do and they really aren’t looking at them correctly. And we do have a big influence. And by the way, no matter what’s happened so far in your life, in your parenting, it is never too late. The grace of God is incredible through good communication with the people around you and change and relying on the Lord any time you can make really good changes.

That’s right. I mean, I just even think about how far it goes when you’re in a humble heart posture and you come to your kids and you say, I messed up or I am sorry. And that can literally change legacies. The fact that you would even be willing to do that would be a legacy changer right there. Right. And so if you if this is if that topic that’s a little mini side topic, that’s probably a huge can of worms. If you feel like you have failed as a parent or maybe you haven’t done the best job at making your kids feel like a blessing and you’re like, well, how do I how do we start over? What do I do? We actually just did a podcast on that a couple of weeks ago that we would encourage you guys to go listen to, which I think that podcast was titled What If I’ve Made Mistakes Now? What? Right. I’ve already made mistakes.

I think it was the one right before this one.

Yeah. So you guys can go listen to last week’s podcast and, and I know that that would be an encouragement to you if that’s something that you have really struggled with.

But well, hey, we’ve got four points. And I just want to start off by thanking you for being part of the 10 Million Legacies movement. All resources now can be found in one place. It’s so cool and helpful to us and everybody else. Be courageous ministry, dot org, all the free stuff, all the awesome things you can spend money on that also supports the ministry and our super quality things like courses, coffee, wearables, the cool stand firm hat, all that stuff.

All the gear.

All the gear. And by the way, there’s some new stuff coming, isn’t there?

Oh, I’m so excited about it, you guys. I’m not going to obviously, you’re not going to be able to see it because I don’t have it here with me to show you in our video. But there are some more feminine looking mugs coming your way.

And it’s so funny because I thought, you know, they’re getting teed up in the background of our stores, but you can’t see them yet. But one of them was actually out there and somebody bought just like that. Yeah. And I’m like, Oh, wait, I got to get that. We’re not ready. Even though it’s going to be fun. But anyways, we so appreciate it. We’re full time effort. The goal is to impact 10 million legacies and anything your prayers. You’re sharing the five star reviews wherever you listen. All of that is so incredibly helpful. Your testimonials because we we don’t spend money on advertising, We don’t have an advertising budget. We would like to actually. We’ll be sending out a year end email talking kind of about next year and how we can really ramp up the impact and you can be a part of that. But right now we’re relying on word of mouth, the Holy Spirit, and working hard.

Yeah, that’s right. Well, you guys, let’s start talking about this topic of our children are blessing or are they a burden? And what will your kids believe when they are older? So we thought that this was a super important topic. And first thing we need to evaluate is what do you believe? Yes. What do you as a parent, as the adult in your family, that sets the example, that teaches things, that lives out what you believe? What do you believe about children? Do you believe that they are a blessing or burden? This is the first time that we were talking about this concept of what do we believe? The first verse that came to my mind was Matthew 1234, which I’m just going to share with you guys quickly. It says this is actually obviously within the gospel. So Jesus here saying, you brood of vipers, how can you speak good when you are evil? For out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks. The good person out of his good treasure brings forth good and the evil person out of his evil treasure brings forth evil. I tell you, on the day of judgment, people will give account for every careless word they speak. Whoa. They will give account for every careless word they speak for By your words you will be justified and by your words you will be condemned. And this is a warning again, Jesus speaking here. And this this is important for us to take to heart because the words that we say do have power within our home. And if we are careless with our words or the things that we say, there’s going to be repercussions. There are going to be consequences that we reap later in life through our legacy with our children based upon what they take away from that. Let me give you an example. Have you ever been in the grocery store and someone randomly blurts something carelessly rude out to you like, don’t you know what prevents that? Like because you have many kids or whatever? I can tell.

Kids in certain areas.

Right? I mean, depending on where you live, you could literally have two kids and people start making that comment to you. But I definitely heard things like that or, Whoa, you’ve got your hands full. Which yeah, I do have my hands full. That’s true. But how we respond to the people who are speaking carelessly in front and I say carelessly, because come on, if they’re saying it, it’s because your kids are right there. If you were alone at the grocery store, no one would say anything to you because they wouldn’t know how many kids you had and they wouldn’t be saying that. Right. And so clearly they’re being careless, not even giving any kind of consideration to the fact that your children have ears and they’re hearing what that person saying about them and what’s being spoken to the kids, what the kids perceive as, wow, that man doesn’t like kids. Wow. That woman thinks that kids are are wasteful or a burden. That’s that is what children will perceive. And so how you respond graciously but seasoned with salt like Colossians four commands us to is going to leave an even bigger impact on our kids and potentially impact whether they believe children are a blessing or a burden later in life. So I think that that’s just one thing that comes to mind, like what we believe comes out of our mouth, right?

I mean, it can be totally it can be simple as Yeah, totally. It’s wonderful. I really love my kids and it’s a really been a good thing.

Well, it could even like I know that there’s so many catchy things that you can say, right? Like when people have said, Boy, you have your hands full. And I’d say, Well, I’d rather have them full than empty or I or there are other things.

That you say harder to.

Say. Yeah, it takes a little bit more courage to say that kind of thing, but also just saying, Yeah, but I wouldn’t want to do anything else with my life or I, I so blessed aren’t I? You know, I like that. I mean that one’s a little bit more like focused on the blessing. But there’s so many things that people have said over the years that are out there that are really catchy and clever. But sometimes when you’re in the moment, it’s hard for you to think of those clever things that people say If you struggle with being courageous or if you’re caught off guard. Right?

And the more even more powerful things that are come out of your mouth when you’re frustrated that come out of your mouth when finances are limited. Out of your mouth when there’s marriage challenge, when they come out of your mouth, when you know you’re talking to a friend over the phone and you know your kids are listening. Yep.

Or you’re.

In, you’re exaggerating things because you’re exasperated yourself and or you have anxiety about something and you can make little comments that in accumulation, if it’s a habit, can start to make children believe that it’s just too hard to have for kids.

Or it’s or it’s so hard having you for kids, I wouldn’t want a fifth. Like, you’d be surprised how kids take things right Like and so we just need to. Regardless of how many children you have, I think that it’s it would be a very powerful conversation to to even ask your children if they feel like we view them as a blessing. That’s kind of like being brave and saying, how can I be a better mom or.

Can I be a better dad?

Or even just in your marriage? How can I be a better wife? How can I be a better husband? Like we’ve we’ve done podcasts where we’ve talked about that kind of thing.

I feel like that’s overdue for me. I’m going to ask you that later.

Oh, good. Well, maybe we can have a date night later chit chat about it. But, you know, I just think that when it comes to what we believe, God even knows, he says out of the heart speaks, right? And so we need to be aware that what we say is a reflection of what’s really deep down in our heart. And we need to think about that. When you think about what are the things our kids have heard, and maybe not just from us, but from the people that are in our community. Can I just say that this is really huge? I know that I’m going to be brave and just share briefly here that when we got pregnant with our fourth and we announced it to certain people, the reaction was not ideal. In fact, I got very upset and was very hurt because people that I loved and thought loved me and loved my children were like, what? Another one? And they were kind of being sarcastic because they love the kids. But like, it was rude. My kids were there, they heard it, it was carelessly spoken. And so if you are in that position and you kind of you you’re struggling, maybe you’re listening to this. I just want you to know, like we’ve been in that position, you’re not alone. If you’ve experienced that from people that God has placed in your life, and maybe He’s put them in your life to help you, like he wants you to challenge them so that they grow to start believing what he believes about children. Right. And sometimes that’s hard to be a change agent in somebody else’s life. But isn’t that really what the Great Commission is? Isn’t that why we’re here? To know God and make him known? To make his word known to make truth known? And that’s what today’s podcast really is about, is what is the truth about children, and do our kids believe that? Do we believe that? Do we.

Believe that? That’s the first point is what do you believe about children? And it’s the natural reaction is, of course, I believe they’re a blessing. The question really is, do you really believe children are a blessing? Does your spouse believe children are a blessing to you together? Project that belief in your home, in your decisions, your actions and so forth. And I think it’s really important to kind of think about that.

I mean, even just when I think about like day to day decisions or or even bigger decisions, right. They really do reflect what we believe on this level of our children. A blessing. Here are a couple of examples, right? Like if you are willing to receive another blessing into your life, whether that’s through biological birth, adoption, foster care, or even being like a spiritual segregate family for a kid that goes to your church or in the neighborhood, that could be a ministry to you, right? Like, do you believe children are a blessing? I know that. Like for me, one of the things that has been in my mind, it sounds ideal as like, oh, yes, I should believe this and I should be living this out, that we would have our home filled with hospitality, that our kids would want to have their friends at our house and be playing games and enjoying company within our home. Right. But let’s be honest, sometimes when my kids ask, Hey, can friends come over if I’m tired and I don’t feel like the extra doing that extra work? I’m like, Really? And I’ve done that too many times and I’m convicted by that because what does that portray to them? It portrays that they’re having their friends over is a burden when it isn’t a burden. And actually in my head, what I think is I, I do want them to want to have their friends over. That’s what we should all desire. I’m sure you would agree with that. But I’m also sure that you probably can relate to when I felt that at times and gone right. And so I think that the daily decisions that we make over time, like you just said, they accumulate and they. Impress upon our children what we believe about this.

So let’s dive into what the Bible says about children. Now that we’ve thought a little bit about what we believe, what we really believe through our action, through our lives, through what kids see.

So Genesis one, verse 28, God says. And God bless them. And God said to them, Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth. This is obviously like talking about procreation. And this is one just one of the points that we just talked about for a second, right? Like the decisions that we make reveal what we believe about children. And so if if we believe that children are a blessing and that God’s word says that, which we’re going to dive more into that in a second, then why wouldn’t we want more?

Right now, this isn’t an episode just to convince you have more kids. But we’re reading scripture and we’re trying to understand what God says. And then sometimes I think what comes into people’s minds opens. That was in the first page of the Bible in Genesis, and here we are in 20, 22 times are a little different than in the garden. And is that still relevant? Is that still what God means for us today? And the answer is yes.

Yes. The relevant the Bible is always relevant, right? It’s unchanging. Our God is the same yesterday, today, and forever. And one thing that we can always count on is the unchanging truth of who God is. And I even think of like, we didn’t have this verse picked out, but I think at the beginning of John, where it says, in the beginning was the word and the word was God, and the word was with God in the beginning, like his word is what brought things to life. And not only that, but it is inherently part of who he is. And so it’s unchanging.

I want to take a moment and give you something for free if you haven’t got it already. Is the date night one sheet? It is a beautiful document you can download that will have some key questions on it for your date night to just get in alignment about what’s most important for your family. No matter what time of year, it’s always important to recalibrate. You can get that by going to parenting dot com and subscribing to our mailing list. Also, you can get all of our show notes and everything at courageous parenting dot com. And I also just want to share real quick about the parenting Mentor program. So many families are being transformed by going through this. It’s the six week self paced program with live engagement from us and even direct interaction. So if you want to join us, here’s a little bit more about it. You can find out more at courageous parenting dot com.

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We now have a game plan to how we want to raise our children. We have so many answers to the questions that have been in our mind.

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And by the way, there’s a demographic problem happening all over the world, especially in Europe, where there’s not enough people having children. It’s happening in America. It’s happening all over the place. And it’s really is an issue. And it’s becoming an economic issue, too. It’s going to hurt the economies and so forth, and populations are decreasing, not increasing. And so that is a challenge. And I think God has a plan. He has a good plan. Now, everybody’s family. God has a different plan for everybody’s family. We’re not saying people’s families need to look like ours or yours or something like that. That’s between you and God and your own journey and your marriage and everybody’s different situations for sure. But this scripture is just echoing the belief that God has in having children. And the third.

Blessing, well, he’s literally equating being fruitful and multiplying like the two are coexistent within each other. Right. And we find that in other scriptures that we’re going to talk about as well. And what Psalm 127, it says, Unless the Lord builds the House, those who build it labor in vain. I think that we all would want the Lord to build our house. Right. And. And that just right there to me at the most foundational level of building a family, talking about like, should we have more kids? Like, it has to be something that we surrender that decision to the Lord. We do need to bring it to him. He needs to be a part of that process because unless the Lord builds the House, those who labor built build it labor in vain, right? The Lord watches over the city, the watchman stays awake in vain, and then it says it is in vain that you rise up early and go late to rest. Eating the bread of anxious toil for he gives to his beloved sleep. Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb, A reward like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them. He shall not be put to shame when he speaks with his enemies in the game.

What a good reminder. The anxious in our toil right before.

Exactly.

Most said verse. That’s next part. The children are inheritors from the Lord, isn’t it? Sometimes a financial discussion on whether to have more kids and also even feeling the burden like children are a burden because of the finances. And I think that all of that scripture right there explains it so perfectly.

It goes together. And it is funny that people that’s why I read the first part, because at first we were just going to start with Behold. But when I saw it, I was like.

Don’t miss that first part.

Yeah, it’s amazing. So amazing. But then even if you were to continue in and not stop at that chapter because the next verse that we wanted to share with you is in Psalm 128 and it continues on. You shall eat the fruit of the labor of your hands. You shall be blessed and it shall be well with you. Your wife will be like a fruitful vine within your house. Your children will be like olive shoots around your table. Behold, Thus shall the man be blessed who fears the Lord like there is.

This shoots around the table. What a beautiful picture of a family around a table and in the fruitfulness. And it’s plural and it’s exciting.

It is. And it’s also like he’s constantly talking about blessing the man. And then what does that go along with it? It’s like over and over again. He’s saying there are heritage, there are reward, there are blessing. And so if this is God’s word, then this this is actually how our minds should think as Christians.

But sometimes we’re so tightly controlling our lives and the finances around our lives in a in our own strength in a way that we can’t see the possibility of more provision as we have more children. And I will just say that we’ve had ups and downs in finances, that’s for sure, and plenty and nothing and all in between. And I would say that Solomon just a story that comes to my mind is Solomon, our sixth child. Seventh seven. Thank you. Came at such a perfect moment, not perfect for provision because it was the most devastating moment in terms of finances. We went from plenty to being completely wiped out into to a negative level, backwards very, very far. And Solomon came right in the midst of that. And what a beacon of hope from the Lord.

What a joy.

I just.

Looked at.

Him and I go. Thank you, Lord. I trust you. You’re going to take care of us. You blessed us with another child. And look at this child. He’s big and mighty and beautiful.

It was amazing because from everything to like the hospital fees to like, we all ended up getting covered, like God totally took care of everything. And he provided for our family in such a beautiful way. But there was there was a moment before that, even when we were going through the hardship of the business failure, right. Where it was like, do we trust God? Are we like, are we going to let him do whatever he wants with my womb?

Like she’s about to have Solomon. I’m selling my watch. I’m selling anything. I have to create some runway.

Selling vehicle.

To provide for the family as we figure out this catastrophe. But really just a minor catastrophe is just finances and nothing.

You know, eternal.

Yeah. So I had my family and God provided and took us out of that in such a beautiful way. But I just think that we need to be faithful. We need to walk strong and have faith about our walk in a way and look at children as a blessing. And, you know, we may eat out less now that we have more kids than when we’re younger.

But that’s probably better for us.

It’s probably better for us. But I don’t look at, Wow, I can’t eat out as much because I have more children, right? I don’t even think like that. I just feel so blessed when I’m able to spend $150 for a basic food basic meal.

Oh, yeah, 100%. And it’s it’s interesting, too, because when we when people ask us about, Oh, wow, it’s funny how people make assumptions based upon how many children you have. Right? Like, I was just reading to some of the women in our app in the Be Courageous social media platform on Wednesdays, I go into our pregnancy and postpartum group and I’m reading through Redeeming Childbirth my book. And so we just finished up session seven, which was on Kneeling before the Porcelain Throne. Yes, very clever chapter title I think there. But it just kind of makes me chuckle because on this topic of like when I would be out and about or just even in church where people didn’t necessarily know me on a super personal level and we were just getting to know each other, people would assume that I had easy pregnancies because I had so many children. And so when they would find out that I actually struggled with HG or that I had massive morning sickness, that then actually even paralyzed me and I ended up being on bed rest for three months with our sixth, sixth child. Like when they hear the stories and they’re like.

And had to have, you know, serious things happen at the.

Office, right? Yeah. I mean, there have been many different situations, obviously, in nine, nine, nine births, 11 pregnancies. And the truth is, is that it hasn’t been easy. Right. But that God actually taught me things through those refining boot camps that are that’s part of my story, that’s part of my legacy that I then can turn around and glorify him with and share the things that he personally, intimately taught me. And I just think that there’s this element of as as people, we need to not be looking for the easy way out, but understand that sometimes the growth will usually the growth happens when you choose the harder path, the path that’s oftentimes less traveled. Right. And, you know, as we’re looking at what the Bible says about children, there’s no confusion. There is literally no confusion. God equates children to blessing his people. And so therefore, that should be our perspective on a child, on a baby.

Speaking of which, in Matthew 18 one through three, it says at that at that time the disciples came to Jesus saying, Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven and calling to him a child. He put him in the midst of them and said, Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. So Jesus obviously has a huge positive view on children and having faith like a child and so forth, which is, which is really, really awesome. And then it says whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest and the kingdom of heaven. So where might we need to walk in humility in this area? Where might we need to be introspective about where we’ve made our family feel like burdens and walk in humility and actually talk to him like Angie was talking about earlier? Also in Matthew 18, verse ten, it says, See that you do not despise one of these little ones, for I tell you that in heaven, their angels always see the face of my father who is in heaven. And so we’re not to despise, despise. The word means repugnance. And isn’t that with the world’s perspective is We’ll go into that in a second, but it’s so powerful just to go. Wow, Children are. Blessing? Well, it’s hard to see that sometimes, because the Bible also says children are foolish. Children need to be trained.

It does. It says foolishness is bound up in the heart of the child. And they do that. Our job as parents is to train them up in the admonition of the Lord. And I think that a lot of times parents will look at like, what is the cost? Right? So we’ve been talking about what we believe regarding, like if children are a blessing or a burden, and then we just went over some scripture. And what does the Bible say about children? How does Jesus view children? What does God say about children? Right. I even think about like Psalm 139, which we’re not going to dive into that entire chapter. So you’re going to squeeze. I know, I know. But God knew us before we were created. He needed us together in our mother’s womb before we were even created. And so clearly, he is the creator. Clearly, he is the one that is in intimate fellowship with babies. And so having that perspective and understanding that biblical truth and believing it, our perspective is going to look very different than the world’s, which is our third point. You know, we as Christians, sometimes we forget to recognize how different we should actually be than the world. And so it’s important that we expose those lies and the world’s perspective, because sometimes they seep into the church and they infect the body of Christ with lies.

And oftentimes the same jokes, the same thoughts about children come out in laughter and little sayings and so forth. So that’s the point, which is to expose the lies and the world’s perspective. And if we’re not exposing if we’re not acknowledging it so easy as to fall in line with it, and too often Christians are falling in line with the wrong conversations, the wrong thinking about children going along with the bad joke, the you know, the children aren’t a blessing that are a burden. And we don’t want to do that.

We don’t want to be people who are pity parties at a ladies night out commiserating about how hard motherhood is. That’s not helpful. I think that may be the.

Right approach to that because motherhood is hard. So what would be the right approach to talking about it?

Well, motherhood is not just hard, though. It’s also joyous. It’s also very worth it. There are so many times where I find myself laughing at the cuteness of the kids or the things that they get so excited about or their first their first tooth that they lost the first time that they read a book. The big hug. The big hug. They’re super quick to forgive. There’s so many lessons that we can learn from children that we as adults forget. That’s why Jesus was reminding us to be more like children, right, In that sense. Have faith like a child. Pray with the faith like a child prays with. Right. That they just believe it so much. There’s so many aspects that we could learn from. But also there’s this element of like, kids are better at loving people genuinely and not holding grudges. That’s their. Yes. As people get older, there are certain personalities that maybe struggle with that more than others. But truthfully, children across the board, they’re so forgiving, they’re quick to forgive. And so and sometimes they’re slow to speak to, like when they’re really little and they’re just learning how And like there are so many things that we can learn from kids. So why is it when moms get together that they focus on just the hard right. Hmm. And and I think that there needs to be leadership. We need to step up our game and we need to try to lead our hearts. But that’s not even possible unless we’re renewing our minds. And which is what Romans 12 exhorts us to do constantly. Right by the washing of the word. We need men. You need to be washing your wives in the word. You need to be reading the Bible with your family women. You need to be reading the Bible every day for yourself and for your children. And if we were just doing that, I guarantee you ladies night out would look different.

It just reminds me of the old quote, which is you want to go where expectations are high and I would just augment that. Let’s go where the expectations are. Have a biblical standard, right? Not even high like it just should be the standard.

And where are they that.

Cause us to grow? And if we are sharing our vulnerability or mistakes or challenges we’re experiencing, we should be ready to be equipped and encouraged to look at the Bible about that and be prayed over and to to rise up and overcome that with the Lord’s help versus just stay in that thinking and allowed to exist and and keep a culture within that group of that’s kind of how we’re always going to be and what we’re always going to talk about in part. And I think that the. Biblical communities. You’re part of need to always be making progress in uplifting to a biblical standard.

Now it’s so good. I just even think about the importance of evaluating like, okay, so am I walking in fellowship with people who actually make me feel like what I’m doing is a worthy thing? Like as a mom, that this is the great commission, this is the best ministry, this is my first ministry, and I should be proud of it. Or do the people I’m walking in community with that maybe even are calling themselves Christians, look down on it as if I’m not doing enough? Or do they think that the decisions that we’re making, lifestyle choices, are they frowned upon? Right.

And or do you feel insecure because someone else is doing lots of other things and it appears that their house is somewhat in order? And you’re wondering, am I not doing enough just because of the comparison trust, Right?

I mean, all of these things can be used by the enemy for bad or they can be used by the Holy Spirit for good, like spurring one another onto good works. Right? And so it’s just super important that you’re transparent with your biblical community because if it starts going into the fleshly mode, that can be corrected. If there’s humility and courage to actually confront what’s happening.

One of the things I admire about you and is you understand your seasons. And so there was times where you said no to things because it wasn’t the right season. You only had little children and you wanted to be dedicated. And I’m so thankful for that because now we’re seeing the fruit of that. It’s hard to see in the moment of just a span of four years how some decisions might alter the future in a very negative way. I mean, when children are young, they need to be they need to feel like they’re the top priority other than your marriage. And they need to feel like their loved cared for, not over delegated and invested in and.

People who and feeling to spend time with them. Right?

Yeah. And people who feel invested in keep investing back as they get older.

Yeah, it’s true. And it’s leading by example. Like think about this for a second. How your kids are going to parent is largely influenced by how you parent them. This is paramount as parents that we understand that like the experiences that our kids have as a child, what when they look back on their childhood, what what, what impression was left upon them about the view of children will most likely be passed on. Now, hold on. Before you start getting super discouraged and thinking, Oh, but man, I’ve totally screwed up. I just want to encourage you because the truth can set us free. And if you have failed in this, if you have made the mistake in this, if you have succumbed to the fleshly exhausted and I’m tired and I just don’t want to do this and I just don’t want to do that, and and you’ve allowed your children to feel or hear that they are a burden in one way or another. The truth found in God’s Word can set them free from that trap. It’s true. The truth sets you free. And I know that for Isaac and I, neither of us come from big families.

And so it’s not like we were raised with a big family. We actually didn’t even set out to have a big family. And in some cases, some families might even think we’re not a big family. We just have nine, babe. Yeah. And so but the truth is, is like we didn’t set out. We didn’t have an example of that. And but what the reason why we are where we are is because we allowed God to be a part of writing our story. We didn’t try to be in control of every single thing, every single step of the way, only us driving our agenda. We went through the processes of over and over again. When we would start taking control, we would hold each other accountable and go, Wait a second, where we walk in biblically, are we are we doing what God wants us to do as believers? And we would then shift gears, repent, confess, go back to surrendering and believing God and asking him for his blessing over our life. And that’s that’s the Christian walk.

And we have to be careful because sometimes our own dreams, our own goals, financial ambition and these kinds of things, which these things are not inherently bad. They can be very good. Your own agenda can get in the way of actually making children feel like a blessing, whether in your home. And so I think the key is it’s okay to have some dreams and goals and things like that, but let’s just do an audit and make sure they’re not making our children feel like they’re in the way.

Or even just like when you do the audit. Another word that comes to mind is the word idle. Have we made an idle out of our way or our dream or our agenda? Right. And so, like as you’re evaluating those things, ask yourself, like, what is perceived by my children? That my children think that I think my way is it’s my way or the highway. Right? Or do my children see me surrendered to God? And do my children see that our family is actually led by him?

You know, it’s interesting. I sort of thought I remember in the early days when, like maybe it was the third or fourth child or something like that, and people starting to question and wonder what we’re doing. Okay, now they’re having their fourth kid and they’re home schooling and now they’re they’re doing all these alternative things.

Right, right, right.

And I just remember thinking in ten or 15 years, they’re going to understand. I remember thinking that they’re going to they’re going to see. They’re going to see Just wait. They’re going to see because there’s there is a better there’s a better way overall and there is a godly way to do things. By the way, even though I said homeschooling, I’m not saying homeschooling has to be part of it, but we were making alternative choices and really investing our children and looking at it as a blessing and.

And wanting to spend more time. I mean, that was part of why we decided to homeschool.

And I just remember them. I remember thinking that they’ll see it down the road. It’s hard for people to see it today, and I don’t answer to people, but it does. People do affect me and they affect you write their opinions, people you love and that you are friends with and so forth. They will see way down the road. And you know what they do see? They do understand over time.

And there will be a respect. But even if there isn’t, does that matter when God knows your heart? That’s what you’re trying to live for him? Yeah. So realizing that things like there’s a lot of like legacy hinders or generational lies, I guess like I even think of the whole scene Not heard is one of them, right? Like that. That was huge. Among the baby boomers generation. I think that they felt that a lot from their parents. Right. And then they there was a huge rebellion during that generation where they did the complete opposite in parenting and basically were very hands off on a lot of things. And I look at that and I go, well, you know, history repeats itself, and sometimes that does become a lie, really, that even though somebody might not admit to it, do kids feel that way? Do they feel like they can’t bring their opinions or their desires or even their needs? Do they feel like they can’t bring those things to you because they’re afraid that if they do, you’re you’re they feel like they’re going to be a burden for asking for new socks or whatever it is?

Let’s talk about something else so that the Gen Z, it appears, is more for abortion in a lot of ways. I’m seeing some stats out there in these kinds of things and you have to wonder, this was a lot of people’s feedback from the post we gave is, well, what about this? This could be contributing to children that are now not growing up becoming okay with abortion because they didn’t feel like blessings anyways when they were children.

Well, and suicide rates are out the roof among that generation as well. And it’s interesting because if they don’t even value their life, how are they going to value the life of a baby? And I think that there’s something to be said for how they grew up and there needs to be. Now, some people listening, I my heart goes out to you. If you have had a child who has struggled with depression or maybe you have kids that have wandered and they are pro-choice or whatever, and you’re realizing that that’s not biblical and you’re like, Where did I go wrong? And how could they be this way, right? Like, I just want to speak to you for a moment and encourage you to apologize again. This would go along with last week’s podcast of recognizing where maybe you are somewhat responsible, if you will, for their viewpoints today, whether that’s that you put them in the seat of a false teacher and encourage them to listen carefully and to learn and be a little learn from a tutor. Right. That has the opposite beliefs of what the Bible teaches, right, in a classroom or anything. Like if you you as a parent, you made that choice to put them in the seat of being taught that. And so that is something that you need to take responsibility for. And I think that a lot of times parents, they are like, well, gee, Jesus, that’s that feels very condemning, Angie. And I don’t I know, I just can’t do that. I can’t that that’s so heavy. But the truth is, is if we really come to our children who are older and we were willing to say, I’m so sorry that I did not see that that was going to impact you in the way that it did. And they were going to teach you the false teachings that they did. It breaks my heart. I wish I wouldn’t have if I if you were to say that that would make massive impact. That kind of humility can change everything.

At least it gets them thinking it’s and it shows good leadership. Even if they disagree with you, they might say no, that that. Is not why I believe this way. Even if they say that they still respect you more, they see your humility, the softening of your own heart, and it might soften their heart.

And but on that topic, too, like I do think that when it comes to like the end and the judgment day, I think that it’s important that you do understand that every person will be held accountable. And when you’re having that conversation with the older child or the older sister or whatever it is, right where you’re confronting them on their beliefs about abortion and you’re very scarcely having different beliefs, it’s important that you recognize that they don’t get to use anybody else as a blame shifting scapegoat when it comes to the day that they meet Jesus face to face and so like that, that’s their own belief. Like they have to own it. They don’t get to blame you, especially if you’re coming to them in humility and saying, I don’t believe this and I wish I wouldn’t have taught that to you.

Hey, the final point is really thinking about how all of this that we’ve been talking about impacts what your children will believe when they are older. And so it’s really good to maybe have a marriage conversation, a date night in or out, and just talk about, hey, you know, is there anything that I’m doing that you see and that I’m doing that’s causing the children to feel like a burden and then maybe that enables the other spouse to do the same and having a healthy discussion about how can we start to encourage a belief that children are a blessing, that they’re a blessing. And, you know, even after conflict and things like that, how are we doing that? Are we doing that? Well, I think getting the point where there’s conflict, disobedience and children and so forth, how we approach that, it really means a lot. And it’s very important that however you decide to approach that, that you never do it in anger, that you’re always calm, and that you’re pursuing the hearts of your children and really trying to understand why and where the behavior is coming from and what’s going on, what’s the deeper issues. Maybe in peace time, you need to go out with them and have a breakfast, a lunch, take a walk. And and really to understand those things because, you know, approaching some of these things wrong, the short shortest path is usually the worst path, like just fixing it quick because I want to get back to what I’m doing is potentially over time making them feel like a blessing even when you’re in correction mode.

It’s interesting too.

Because.

I think when I think of the way that kids grow up in your home and what they experience and they’re looking back on their childhood, there are a lot of things that parents need to be aware of that will make impact on if their kids are going to actually view children as a blessing or if they are going to view children as a burden and choose to maybe not even want kids. Right. I think that when a kid grows up and they don’t want to get married, that really speaks volumes about potentially what they witnessed in their home in your marriage. I’m just going to say it. That’s a hard thing to say, but like it has to be said because we need to recognize that we have influence. And if we are willing to say that we have influence, then the truth is, is if our kids choose it, they don’t want it. It’s either based upon what they saw in our home and experienced in our home, or what they’ve been indoctrinated by regarding their their education and their culture that they’re a part of. And so we we can only take care of what we have control over, which is our homes. Right. And so and the education I do believe that parents have jurisdiction over choosing where and who their children are being educated by. So understanding what your jurisdictions are and choosing to make wise biblical choices, even if that goes against the culture.

And can I say Christian culture that maybe you’re a part of? You need to do what’s right in the eyes of the Lord, period. And I think that as we’re talking about how how do your kids grow up and how does that influence their view? Here’s another one. Sometimes in families and this can happen in big families, but it can also happen in small families. Sometimes when parents feel overwhelmed by life, whether finances are hard or not, they can over delegate the responsibilities of their younger children to their older children, to where the older children are actually having to take care of their younger siblings. So much so that by the time they launch from the home, they’re like, I already raised kids. I don’t want any of my own. That was really hard. Well, of course it was hard. They were kids raising kids. That’s not God’s design. If God has given you your children and you’ve received them from him, then it’s your responsibility to raise them. And you should not be over delegating that to your older children. I can’t tell you how many older families we’ve seen this witness by where you’re looking at the family on the outside and you’re like, Wow, what a beautiful family. That’s so awesome. And then you talk to their older kids and their older kids don’t want kids.

Yeah.

And so, guys, there are so many aspects of this experience. In your home. You know, I believe that the Holy Spirit is that powerful, that just even talking about this conversation with you guys, you’re listening to Isaac and I have this little conversation. I believe that the Holy Spirit will impress upon you the areas that maybe need a spotlight on them. And I pray that you don’t just ignore them, but you go out on a date night. Maybe you spend some time journaling and you pray about it. You talk to your spouse and there’s like, a real, genuine effort towards making change so that you can leave a new legacy where your kids don’t grow up and become like the mass majority of Generation X like Isaac was just talking about. But instead they get to be the lights and the beacons and the blessings that they are in their generation. The blessing that God literally placed them in their generation for a reason. One thing that’s huge that I just want to share with you is this concept that, you know, if God says children are a blessing, that is an attribute that is unchanging about them. If they were a blessing when you gave birth to them or when you found out you were pregnant with them, they were. They’re also a blessing when they’re four. They’re a blessing when they’re seven.

They’re a blessing when they’re 21. And so we need to recognize that children, like children, are a blessing from God. They’re a gift from God. They’re a reward from him. They’re part of our inheritance. In fact, they’re the only eternal inheritance that we potentially and I say potentially because this is up to Jesus and and their relationship with him because you can’t save your kids. But this is how you build treasures in heaven, you guys. One way, in addition to sharing the gospel and making disciples of all nations, this is part of the Great Commission. And so understanding that at its core brings a whole new perspective to all of it. A little bit of sacrifice for parents. Is it worth another person’s whole life and their holy eternity? 100%. That was hugely convicting to me because I had morning sickness. And there are many times where women would come up to me and they’d say, So are you guys done having babies after what you just walked through? And I’m like, Are you kidding me? I’ve walked through this eight times and they look at me and they’re like, What? Like you’ve done this eight times where you’ve puked over and over again. And I’m like, Well, yeah. I mean, it’s nine months of suffering for another person’s whole life and eternity. It kind of seems selfish to, like.

Just be.

Careful like.

That about thinking too much about yourself. Yeah, that is not what we’re supposed to do. We’re supposed to take care of ourselves. It’s the Holy temple. The body is the holy temple. We’re supposed to nourish ourselves so we can be useful, but we’re not to overly think about ourselves and be so.

And make all of our decisions based upon our desires. Right? Because our hearts can be deceived. And sometimes what we think is best for us is the opposite of what God’s plan is for our life.

So what is God given you in your home? And let’s look at those little children. Maybe they’re big now. Look at them as an absolute blessing, a gift from God. The word of steward, train and love. Well, and launching into this world to glorify our father in heaven.

We just want to end with one last verse because we’re grandparents and it’s a real special verse that’s become near and dear to my heart. Proverbs 17, verse six Grandchildren are the crown of the aged and the glory of children is their fathers a men?

Thanks for joining.

Us. See you next time. Hey, thanks for listening to this episode. For more resources, go to courageous parenting and courageous mom dot com for free online workshops, blog posts and bestselling courses. Also, we wanted to quickly tell you about our six week online parenting mentor program. Isaac and I created a powerful biblical curriculum. Here’s how it works. Each week we release a video with a downloadable parenting packet to make it easy for you to incorporate those teachings directly into your parenting.

This is an incredible, self paced program where we cover everything from obedience training to overcoming mistakes most Christians are making. But more than that, it’s a supportive community. You’ll have access to our private online group, live Webcasts and the courageous parenting text message line where Angie and I can send you weekly encouragement straight to your phone.

If you’re interested in joining our next online parenting mentor program, secure your spot now at CourageousParenting.com

Written By Angie Tolpin
Angie has been married to Isaac for 19 years and together they have eight children, whom she homeschools. She is the Founder of CourageousMom.com, a doula, the author of the best-selling book Redeeming Childbirth, and the creator of the first ever Christian Postpartum Course. Angie loves ministering to Women and has created a few online Bible Studies on Biblical Friendship and Motherhood.

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