Nor does everyone have the same convictions about children.
This is our story. This is our conviction.
When we were first married (6/95) we had wonderful Godly examples around us of how large homeschooling families worked. We didn't know why these families were continuing to have children and we never asked, we just knew we liked what we saw. Late in the same year we felt pulled to relinquish control to the Lord and stopped using birth control. At this point we had never heard of the quiverfull mindset, so we actually came about our quiverfull conviction before we even knew what that meant. We knew that the Lord is "the giver of life" (1 Timothy 6:13) and that "Blessed is the man whose quiver is full" (Psalm 127:1-5), but we didn't understand the strength of those promises. Also, at this point our conviction was primarily on how many children the Lord would bless us with, not on medical intervention, etc. People would ask us how many children we wanted to have and we would respond with, "As many as the Lord wants to give us, ten maybe?" On a side note, before we were married we both felt a strong urge to adopt. It is amazing to look back at the convictions and desires that He instilled in us before we had any concept of how those would come to fruition. We waited and waited and waited. To this day I have never conceived through God-given natural conception.
Several years into our shaping journey I was diagnosed with stage four endometriosis and we took steps to resolve it. The doctors gave us a choice: have a hysterectomy or have a baby (at which point we had been trying for several years). Our steps led us to in-vitro (not a quiverfull mindset). Only God can make a baby and He did. He made two. I miscarried in my first trimester. But the Lord heard my cry! He reminded us of our first conviction to adopt. He said to us, "As many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. The Spirit himself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God." (Romans 8:14-16)
God continued to shape us as we sought which direction to go to adopt. We took every required adoption class for every possible direction (infant domestic, international, domestic, older child). He brought us to a place of understanding that His intention was to fill our quiver with what our desires had been at each stage of our lives together. We became approved for foster care and adoption. He had blessed us with years of being "us" and then brought to us our precious baby boy. Five months later we had a girl and 2 years after that we had a boy and a girl. Today they are 10, 7, 4 and 3.
God continues to grow our family as we seek His face. We rely on His promise that a quiverfull is a blessing that He desires for us and then we pray that the fruits of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23) would reign in us as we teach, love, encourage and discipline our children unto godliness (1 Timothy 4:7-8). People ask us how many we are going to adopt and we still say, "As many as the Lord wants to give us, ten maybe?" Our family verse is James 1:27, "Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this, to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world." Whether by adoption or by birth, our children are the blessings that God intended for us and we will not stand in His way as He continues to pour them out on us. We don't want to limit God and what He intends for us. We trust Him knowing that His plans are for good (Jeremiah 29:11).
*Please click here to watch the Dave Thomas Foundation video on the fost-adopt system.
*There were 114,000 adoptable children in the foster care system as of November 2007.