Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Children are Not Flowers

I love the Mother Teresa quote, "How can there be too many children? That is like saying there are too many flowers." It well conveys the beauty and miracle of little children and birth in the same miraculous way a flower sprouts and blooms.

But children are not flowers.

You can have too many children, and you can have too many flowers. Certainly everyone loves flowers, and how can you not love children? They are the most wondrous gift bestowed on us by a loving God. Gardening is in a small way an insight into the miracle of God's creation second only to raising children or giving birth.

But in my yard there aren't many flowers. It's not because I don't adore flowers, but because keeping up with them is a lot of work! Sometimes I get lucky and hit on a variety that mostly takes care of itself, blooming in the most neglected circumstance and propagating on their own. But who can raise children that way? If flowers require frequent time and attendance to their position, nutrition, and care, how much more work are children with their near constant demand for time and care? It's not that I don't adore children, I obviously do given that I have 5 of my very own schooled at home. If children were easy we'd all have more! The decision is at what point does the enjoyment and fulfillment of children become outweighed by the tremendous effort? So yes, I can scarce keep up with those I have already blooming! Here we are in the flowers nearly 18 months ago, and while it does keep getting better and better and life seems easier as time passes while kids grow up, adding to the fun is a daunting thought!

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