“Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee” (Genesis 3:16).
As a young girl my dream was always to grow up and be a wife and mom someday. My sisters and I would take out our dolls and line them up on the steps, pretending to play church. Every few minutes we would have to take one or two of our dolls out to be spanked because they were “naughty in church.” We would play house with them, pretend to make them supper and put them to bed. This is something probably every little girl does, looking forward to the day when she will be the woman of her own house when she grows up.
Lately, with things that have happened at work, women who find it difficult to bear children, who miscarry their little ones, or by watching my mom and other women discipline their children and work long into the night cleaning the house and doing the laundry, I have been reminded that being a wife and mother is not a romantic fantasy, but a very real and taxing work. Because Eve listened to Satan and took and ate of the fruit of the forbidden tree, God punished her and consequently all women with the sorrows of bearing and rearing children. Pregnancy itself has its sorrows in sickness, in pain, and in the mental stress of the mother worrying about the health and wellness of her baby. There is the pain of bringing the child into the world, and later on there will be sorrows when dealing with the sins of that child.
But don’t let this discourage you young women from longing to be mothers in Israel! If the Lord wills us to be mothers someday, or if He has already blessed some of us with children, there will be and are many joys which come from raising the seed of His covenant. That first smile, the first time a child says “mommy!”, the way a little girl wants to help her mom with her new baby brother or sister, the hugs, the kisses and “I love you’s”, the ability to teach those precious young children the love of their Father, to sing His praises, and pray to Him. There are so many beautiful things to look forward to if the Lord wills we become mothers someday!
So I hope that we can see these things through the light of God’s Word and His commands to us as women. The sorrows come from our original sinfulness, because we too, through Adam and Eve, rejected God and chose the way of sin. Humbly may we fall before God with the realization that without His work in the hearts of our children they cannot be saved. And though we may teach them and pray for them, though they may be saved, it is not because of us, but all of Him. Even now, pray for the children that God may give, if it is in His will. And may we pray for God’s grace and blessing to raise those children through the joys and the sorrows that they will bring.