Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb is a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, so are the children of one's youth. Happy is the man who has his quiver full of them; they shall not be ashamed, but shall speak with their enemies in the gate.
-- Psalm 127:3-5
I still vividly remember the day my first child was born. As she came into the world I gazed upon the most beautiful little baby I'd ever seen. Later I was driving home from the hospital for a shower and a fresh change of clothes when a song came on the radio, "The Men in My Little Girl's Life" -- a ballad about being a father as he watches his daughter grow through childhood to womanhood. I wept as I listened, knowing those years would go by very fast... and they did.
Being a father, whenever I read the Psalm quoted above I'm always captivated by one word - "heritage." It basically means "something passed down from a preceding generation." That little girl I watched being born and wept for is not mine to give to God like a product of our fertility, but rather His, which he has entrusted to us. So are all her siblings.
My wife and I share a great treasure: precious lives, which are placed in our lineage that His life with us might be perpetuated. To the psalmist, this was a blessing from the Lawgiver, God Himself, who blessed Israel with another generation intended to continue their covenantal promise. For us in Christ, it is his gift of succeeding generations for His Church and her families.
These days I'm looking upon my grandchildren, and rejoicing that my children and their spouses will pass on the greatness of Christ's gospel to them and thus will continue the work of God in the world. What a blessing. What a heritage!
Heavenly Father, please keep me from taking for granted the gift of children. Help us to remember this heritage that you have given us. Make us faithful stewards of these precious lives, that each generation might be raised in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. We ask this through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
"The domestication of abortion has made it tragically commonplace, so much so that we seem to have lost our ability to be outraged by it. How is it that even we who oppose abortion are not more overwhelmed by the fact that it is legal... to tear apart the tiny bodies of helpless unborn children?"
-- Michael Spielman