Many at times I have been baffled why God gives children to women who do not want them, but He does not give to those who want them. At times, I worry why some are having octuplets while others are unsuccessfully looking for merely one. I quiz myself how we will multiply and replenish the earth if women do not get pregnant. In this lesson, I will talk about women who were barren briefly and those who were barren for life. I hope this lesson lightens your spirit, oh woman seeking for a child!
Sarah; Abraham’s wife was barren (Gen 11:30). It worried Abram the husband too that she was getting old without a child. He even slept with their amah to get pregnant, but God insisted he will have his own son. Sometimes we consider our situations hopeless especially when the woman has passed her period that we laugh at promises like Sarah did (Gen 18:11-15). God does not fail in his promises that at the appointed time Sarah had a baby at 90 (Gen 21:2). The Bible says it was by faith (Heb 11:11). My sister, keep hoping!
The second woman that was barren briefly was Rebekah: Isaac’s wife (Gen 25:21). One thing strikes me though; in both of these cases their husbands stood with them. They (husbands) entreated the Lord even more while their wives did the crying. In most male chauvinistic societies, the woman bears all the blame and ignominy even when the man is the impotent one. These are difficult times for the woman, so they need more support than blame from their husbands.
The third case was that of Rachel: Jacob’s wife (Gen 29:31). At times God closes those wombs so that he can commandeer love for others. Perhaps you did not like other people’s kids and God wants you to learn how to love the children of others. But God shut Rachel’s womb. Sometimes if a woman cannot conceive, she envies those who can (Gen 30:1). Others nag their husbands for children day and night (Gen 30:1). Rachel later conceived (Gen 30:22-24). The children that women who have struggled to give birth born end up being stories of hope to humanity like Joseph.
Mrs. Manoah was barren (Judges 13:2-3), and the man entreated the Lord (Judges 13:8). Again your wife’s barrenness is not her problem alone; it is yours both. Finally, the woman bore a son (Judges 13:24). He grew up to be Samson, the warrior! I told you children barren women give birth are usually the Hercules of the society.
The fifth case was Hannah (I Sam 1:5). Her adversary provoked her for being childless that she resorted to crying and starving herself. She took her bitterness to the priest; God’s representative. Cast all your cares unto God for he cares for you. At the appointed time, she had a child (I Sam 1:20). If you are not dead, please have hope.
The sixth case is the woman who had a very old husband who could not get her pregnant. Her kindness made the prophet intervene for her, and she later conceived (2 Kings 4: 8-17). Is your husband too old to fertilize your eggs; count on God. Impossible things to man are possible to God (Lk 18:27).
The seventh case was Elisabeth: the wife of Zechariah the priest who was barren (Lk 1:5-7). Note the emphasis that they were both righteous. That means barrenness is not synonymous to being sinful. So stop asking God what you have done that He does not want to give you children. Did you realize that women who are single have children? Thus, they are living in fornication. If children were based on righteousness, then they would not have because God is against fornication. But the ways of God are always strange! Although Zachariah was already an old man (Lk 1:18), the Lord gave them a child called John (Lk 1:57-63).
Nevertheless, there were other women in the Bible who though married died without having children. The first case was Michal: King Saul’s daughter and King David’s wife (2 Sam 6:20-23).
Therefore, there are a few things to remember. God is the one who gives children (Gen 4:1; Ps 127:3). People could take sperms and fuse them to fertilize the eggs but if God does not give his blessing, they will come to naught. God can make a barren woman the mother of children again (Ps 113:9). God has promised your wife will be fruitful (Ps 128:3). Count on Him as I adapt Isaiah’s promise 54:1-14:
Sing, O barren woman, you that has no child; break forth into singing, and cry aloud, thou that didst not travail with child: for more are the children of the desolate than the children of the married wife, says the LORD. For you are not desolate; be not ashamed or confounded. Forget the shame of your childlessness and don’t remember the reproach of your barrenness. For your Maker is your husband.
For the LORD has called you as a woman forsaken and grieved in spirit, and a wife of youth. For though God has hid his face in a brief moment from you with everlasting kindness will He have mercy on you. For the mountains shall depart, and the hills be removed; but His kindness shall not depart from you, neither shall the covenant of His peace be removed, says the LORD that has mercy on you.
O thou afflicted, tossed with tempest, and not comforted, behold, He will lay your stones with fair colors, and lay you foundations with sapphires. In righteousness will you be established: you will be far from oppression; for you will not fear: and from terror; for it shall not come near thee.
It is also important to remember that you did not get married for children. Marriage has at least three purposes. The primordial one is for a helpmeet or companion (Gen 2:20); in other words to tampon loneliness. Secondly, it is a medium to fulfill the sanction of multiplication (Gen 1:28). Lastly, a means to avoid fornication (I Cor. 7:1-2). If you do not have children, my sister, be happy you have the other two. We will not always have everything that we want. That is how life is!
Until then, weep no more for God sees your tears.
Prince & PA Hamilton Ayuk
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“No matter how a rat becomes the house pet, if it is sleeping beside the bag of groundnuts the owner may not have much sleep. ” (Hamilton Ayuk).