As we welcome our seventh child
Hello Little One!
My, there’s a story behind your very existence. A family faith walk, a season of defeat and despair, a season of closing ourselves off to the possibility of…you, and then a sweet season of your Creator gently whispering to us and wooing us back into trusting Him with our family size and family members. Your mama’s pregnancy with your older brother, Judah, was a tough one. An unexpected pregnancy, debilitating fatigue, depression, darkness, anger and rage, and seeming utter defeat in parenting the other five. I swore I’d never do it again. I swore our family, and our marriage, and my sanity couldn’t survive another 10 months of mommy’s body being utterly taken over by another human being’s growth and survival. So we said we were “done”. Done and very close to taking permanent measures to prevent….you.
But then….your mama started hearing the gentle whisperings of the Holy Spirit, the Comforter, the Helper, and the Guide. He started whispering…..SEVEN. It came up in conversations, and in my scripture readings and in stories and in other mothers who had raised, or been raised with SEVEN. That hard heart, fearful of pregnancy and the darkness it had brought, began to soften a bit. That heart cherished the joys that your older brother Judah brought, and the ways his personality made us richer as a family. Those miserable 10 months plus six months of postpartum depression seemed to wane in the light of this lively human being and how much each of the older brothers and sisters relished in the welcoming of a new sibling. Then the bolder whisperings came…”I have a seventh child for you.” For eight full month, those whisperings came…”I have a seventh child for you. I have a seventh child for you” Your Maker and the Sustainer of our family, was preparing me to welcome you with joy and trust, rather than panic and fear. Baby, I want you to know this….Your God might call you to some scary things…some walks of faith that you don’t feel ready for, but He is your gentle and loving Father, and He will hold your hand every step of the way.
Well, after those months of whisperings, I just KNEW. I knew that God was going to give us a seventh child, I just didn’t know when. So late one summer night after your brothers had fallen asleep, your sisters started begging me to take a pregnancy test just to see if I could possibly be pregnant. I truly wasn’t expecting anything, so I took it just to pacify them. As I stared at two little lines on a $1 pregnancy test from Walmart, I was made aware that YOU existed…. Because of the gentleness and kindness of our God, I sat there in surprise, but far from fear and panic. “OK, Lord, that seventh child is now.” And no matter how the pregnancy transpired, I knew that the Lord had prepared me for it, and he would provide for us through it.
A few days later, I ran the Peachtree 10K with your oldest brother…and would proceed to run three more road races with him. I would proceed to have the easiest pregnancy that I have ever experienced. I would proceed to have help when needed from your Aunt Hannah, who had happened to come live with us several months before your conception. I would proceed to be (almost) fully capable of taking care of the rest of your siblings and keep up with hospitality and church planting and school engagements. Yes, there were tired days, and yes, there were nights when your older sisters cooked dinner under my direction while I lay exhausted in bed, but the act of growing you in my womb was as smooth as it could have possibly been. God called us into something, someone, but He provided the supernatural energy and mental and emotional stability, plus outside help needed to walk in that path without fainting or growing weary. These past 10 months he has truly kept his promise that “those who trust in the Lord will find new strength. They will soar high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint.” (Isaiah 40:31)
I have not met you yet, and I don’t even know if you are a boy or a girl or what your name will be, but sweet child, you need to know that you are a miracle. You are seven, the Biblical number of completeness and perfection. You are sign and symbol of the goodness of Yahweh, and the faithfulness of His Son, Jesus Christ, and the nearness of the Counselor, His Holy Spirit. You are a faith walk. You are precious to us. You are precious to your Creator.
Almost every night, before I went to bed, I played these truths to you as you were knit and formed in darkness.
I pray that every day of your life these will be the reality you live out of, and nothing else. I love you, sweet babe, and I’m incredibly excited to finally get to hold you in my arms and not just in my womb.
Nine Months of Growth (….and many other activities!)