Celebrating 500 {guest post by Abby of The Chou Life}

My final guest in this week's celebration is my sister-in-law Abby, from The Chou Life. I think you will see why I am blessed to also call her my friend:

While many readers of GraceLaced are connected with Ruth solely via the blog world, I have had the blessing of calling her my sister-in-law for the last six years.  She is a faithful source of biblical exhortation, hospitality, conviction, and laughter. Ruth lives what she blogs, and I always appreciate her (only slightly) older and (much) wiser advice.

Since the birth of our third child last summer, an issue often on my mind is how many children we should have.  While the “you have your hands full” comments are endless, I somehow feel that three kiddos aren’t really that many.  God has given me the desire for a lot of children (and how and/or whether that desire will be fulfilled we have yet to see) but I constantly feel the resistance of our culture against having “too many.”

Last fall, I blogged about the encouragement I’d received from reading Psalm 127—the quiverfull psalm—along with Matthew Henry’s commentary.  The following week, Ruth posted "Reserved." It brought tears to my eyes.  We hadn’t discussed the topic with each other, and yet we were both experiencing the same convictions: children are a blessing from the Lord, and “there’s always room for what God provides.”

God has, in His sovereignty, reserved a special spot in Ruth’s family for the new baby.  Her description of this “reservation” served to strengthen the conclusion I had reached: our culture in general is decidedly anti-Christian…and subsequently anti-children.  God says children are a blessing; our culture says they’re a burden.  If I want to honor God with my life, I will view children as He does and ignore the naysayers around me.

As Ruth’s family and mine continue in this journey of having babies and training them up, I pray that we will consistently encourage one another, sharing our joys and struggles along the way.

******************************

Reserved Adjective: kept specially for a particular purpose or person.

It's a funny thing...to prepare and make room for a person you've never met. A person you've known only through conversations with the Maker, through longings with your spouse, through the imagination of your children, and most recently--through blurry, but fascinating little portraits.

Sometimes we forget, and think our house could not be any noisier, any busier, any more full of love. But a few daily occurrences and challenges of the last twelve weeks have served to remind me, that we indeed anticipate more laughter, more energy, and an even greater ability to love, in the days to come.  The capacity is there; God is providing for it.

We are making room for the baby. We've not spruced up the nursery yet, nor added an extra seat at the dinner table. We haven't figure out how to fit five kids in the car, nor how to sleep five kids in the house. But all of us know there is a special place in our family reserved specially for this little one. No square footage added, no closets cleared out...there's just room. There's always room for what God provides.

It's been reserved, and we eagerly await as the Lord daily forms us to be the family to whom much has been given.

"Reserved" was originally posted on October 18, 2010.

********************************

Thank you, Abby. You are a blessing to me! {Be sure to check out Abby's blog for recipes, family life, and super cute pics of my niece and nephews!}

**And, this is the last call for entering Monday's giveaway. The contest will end tonight at 10pm. Be sure to scroll down, and check it out if you haven't joined in the celebration!**