Titus 2: “To Love Children ...”

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Single or married, mother or childless, God has called all of his daughters to love children.

Whether or not we actually give birth, women are called to nurture the new life around us in various ways. Before I became a Christian, I was not very interested in children. I assumed I might have children one day, but I was oblivious to the children around me and did not care to spend any time with them. This is one area where God has made a tremendous change in my life. Over the years, I have had rich relationships with many children. The Lord has also given me evangelism opportunities with children. I have even created an informal Veggie Tales club with about a half dozen young boys in my neighborhood. They would stop by for sodas and videos, and I would share the gospel and pray with them.

Even though I do not have children of my own, I have three nieces and one nephew in whom to invest. It takes planning to be involved in their lives, but it is worth it to cultivate those relationships. Because I have vicariously experienced the thrills and sacrifices of motherhood as I have helped my sisters over the years, I have a window into that aspect of femininity. Just as importantly though, through these times together, I have developed one-on-one friendships with these small relatives of mine that I hope will flourish through the changing seasons of life ahead of us. I want to be a relevant relative of theirs, not a distant aunt. That means declining vacation opportunities with my friends to spend my vacation with my far-away nieces. That means declining social events on weekends to babysit my nearby niece and nephew or taking a day off during summer to plan a special day of adventure with them. But that also means I am the beneficiary of funny voicemail messages, elaborately drawn pictures, special “treasures” wrapped in thick layers of tissue and tape, and excited hugs when I arrive at their front doors. Somehow, it does not seem one bit like sacrifice. Perhaps these things contributed to a recent decision by one of my sisters and her husband to name me as guardian for their two daughters should they die in a mutual accident. Despite my being single, they thought I would rear their girls as close as possible to their values. Words cannot express how much that act of trust encouraged me!

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