Debates regarding whether or not Christians ought to use birth control can be some of the most heated that I have seen. It is fairly common to transfer something that God has taught us personally as truth for everyone. While Christianity certainly does hold a lot of absolute truth, there is also a whole lot of grey mixed in there and that is why the life of God within us by His Spirit is so important.
In my journey with God I have found that this issue of birth control is one of those grey areas. I truly believe that it is entirely possible for God to lead one couple in the freedom to use birth control while guiding others to refrain from it. And for some couples, He leads differently for different seasons. What is most important is that in every step you are honoring the Lord as the creator of life and you are involving Him in your conversation as a couple and the ultimate end decision.
The reasons we come to hold the opinions we maintain are diverse and if it is your understanding that it is only the Catholic Church which does not approve of the use of birth control, there are actually many within the Protestant Church who also feel that any birth control at all is inappropriate and they are leaving the number of children they have completely up to the Lord. You can read more about this idea, commonly referred to as quiver full, here.
One of my friends was lead with her husband to refrain from using any birth control at all apart from Natural Family Planning and she has a large family now that has been both a challenge and a blessing to her. For them, God lead them to dedicate every sexual act to the possibility of life being created. Another of my friends has a household full of children because God lead them to use birth control AND to have many children. Her children, also, are a great blessing and a challenge at times. I know of another family who refrains from using birth control, but they have just one child. For them, having a quiver full, has meant having one child. Personally, after the birth of my last child, my husband and I both talked and prayed and over the course of a number of months eventually came to a place of freedom for my husband to have a vasectomy.
So how is it that God can lead us all to such different understandings. Primarily, I believe it is because HE KNOWS US. He knows were we are weak and where we are strong. He knows what we will do in His Kingdom. He knows the personalities of our children and what kind of family they would best fit into. He knows our desires for our family and our dreams for the future. He knows what resources are available to us both now and in the future, and I am not primarily talking about monetary resources, but also relational ones. He knows every detail of our lives from now until the end and he KNOWS what is best for us. Wrapping all those things together, it is unreasonable to me to assume that what is best for my husband and my family is also best for yours.
As I said earlier, the key in all of this is that you and your husband are listening to the Lord and honoring what he has told you about your fertility and child bearing. And as I mentioned on a previous article regarding Birth Control Options, if the Lord leads you in the decision to use birth control, your listening does not stop there. Then you need to be praying about which method is right for you. When I was praying about my options I remember asking the Lord about Mirena which seemed to me that it might be a good option, but He told me not to use it and the reason surprised me. I won’t share the reason because while it was truth for me, I am not convinced that it is truth for everyone. Still, do keep a listening ear towards the Lord as you determine which method you and your husband will be using.
So be encourage to embrace what the Lord has told you and your husband about this. He has good things for you and in whatever you decide just continue to maintain a humble heart towards the Lord and to honor Him as Creator.
Since this blog is not an appropriate platform for extensive debate, we ask that if you wish to participate in the comment section that you maintain a respectful approach and refrain from enticing debate. Keep in mind also that comments which present an opinion as though it is the only possible will of God will be subject to very high moderating standards. If you would like to share how you have come to the position you now hold feel free to do so in a kind manner. We can all benefit from hearing how others have processed this issue in their marriage.
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