Whether you’re trying for a baby or you’re pregnant, at some point you start to think about that child and your dreams and aspirations for them. I remember when we were trying for a baby, never taking it for granted that I would get pregnant, I was very aware that a child is a gift from God and, if it is His will that we should have a child, then it will happen.
“Behold, children are a gift of the Lord, the fruit of the womb is a reward.” Psalm 127v3
When I knew I was pregnant and everything was going well I allowed myself to start to think about what I really wanted for my child. For some people this may be a good job, lots of money, a nice family. For me there was only one thing I wanted for my unborn child and that was for them to love God like I do and to follow His ways throughout their life. Then that got me thinking about how I would help them to achieve this because you can’t force someone to love God, can you?
I was raised in a religious family and in my late teens I made the decision myself to be baptised. So I suppose I could just do what my parents did, but what did they do? I can’t remember anything specific other than being taken to Sunday School, meetings and youth groups. Then it dawned on me! I didn’t need to do anything specific. My husband and I already centre our lives on God’s Word, the Bible, and that’s what my parents did. They taught us by the example of how they lived their lives. They taught me values based on scriptural principles and tried to give me a balance between learning God’s teachings and discovering what life was about. So, when I chose to be baptised I had come to my own informed decision.
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. Take to heart these words that I give you today. Repeat them to your children. Talk about them when you’re at home or away, when you lie down or get up. “Deuteronomy 6v5-9
What will this look like for my new baby and me? Shall I decorate the nursery with Biblical characters and only allow Bible based storybooks into my house? No, that’s not right for me. I would feel I was trying to force something on my child without giving them an alternative or a choice. I want God to be central to my child’s upbringing so I need to find a balance that works for my family.
I will have Bible storybooks. I will read them regularly with my child but I will also have other books too. I will pray regularly with my baby and, when they are old enough, I will teach them to pray and explain that prayer is the way we can talk to God. I will tell them how the first thing I did when I knew I was pregnant was to pray to God and thank Him for the wonderful gift that He had given me.
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4v6-7
Wherever you are in your journey to parenthood, prayer can be a huge help and comfort. I know it was for me. There will be many tough decisions ahead but if you and your partner talk to each other and to God you will figure out the best way forward for your family.