In case you missed the big announcement, Michelle Duggar is pregnant with child number 20. I realize this is kind of old news by now, but I like talking about things after they’ve cooled off for a bit. This is less because I like to do lots of research and choose my words carefully and more because I’m a lazy blogger. So here we are, roughly a week after the big announcement, and I’ve finally gotten around to sitting down and sharing some thoughts on the baby factory that is the Duggar family.
I’m not here to make jokes about how the Duggar name is about to become the new Smith here in the States (mostly because I already made that joke in my small group last week). I’m not even here to poke holes in the “birth control gets in the way of God’s will” theology these folks are espousing.
I’m here to celebrate the faith of Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar.
I might disagree with their theology; I might cringe at their perfect, sugary demeanor; and I might want to tell them it’s perfectly fine to have your child’s name start with a letter other than J. But one thing I cannot do is criticize them for their commitment to what they believe.
Here’s a woman who’s getting to the stage of life when having children is becoming more and more dangerous both to her and and to her baby, but she clearly hasn’t given up on her decision to steer clear from birth control. Instead of looking at the health problems of her last baby as evidence against her beliefs, she looks at the survival of her last baby as a miracle and a reminder of God’s providence.
As American Christians, we have a very convenient faith. You can whine all you want about the liberal media’s bias against Christianity, but what discomfort has that really caused you? Heck, even when we tithe, the government rewards us by knocking a little off our taxes. Disagree with the theology all you want, but what the Duggars are doing shows a great deal of faith. Having this many children with this many years under your belt is more than just inconvenient. It’s dangerous.
But that doesn’t stop them.
It doesn’t matter that it endangers Michelle and her baby because they’re doing what God has called them to do. I see the same sort of devotion in the Amish. Their avoidance of electricity and even advanced schooling puts them at an extreme disadvantage in the world we live in today, but they hold fast. It’s amazing and a little bit convicting.
I often wonder if I would have that same attitude if suddenly a Christian value I hold to dearly turned into an inconvenience.