should Christians use birth control? my story.



Today I was going to post about a raw carrot cake recipe, and nothing went right. And then somehow I ended up writing about our birth control story today. Yeah.

I know that birth control, contraception, and artificial reproductive technologies can be big dividing issues for many Christians today. But I really believe they are issues we can't afford to overlook as followers of Jesus in this culture. 

But before we go there, I want to tell you my story. :)

I was engaged at 18 and married at 19. We were young and happy and had lots of plans that didn't include any little people for a very long time. A dog, definitely, but no little people. I took birth control pills to make sure of that.

But my world and my opinions about birth control drastically changed within a few months of us getting married {over 10 years ago now!}. The more I read the Bible and grew closer to God, the more convicted I felt that we were disregarding God's blessing of children in seeking after our own desires by taking birth control pills.

I was 20 and in my last semester of college and I wanted a career, money, and a red Jeep Liberty {seriously}. And I didn't want to have children until I was 28, if at all. {Why I gave myself a random 8 years, I have no idea}. In fact, we had often joked about being DINKS when we got out of college- double income, no kids.

Slowly I started to feel the conviction that we were meant to bear children, but then God completely wrecked me when I read on my own package of birth control pills and saw that it had three ways of keeping me from getting pregnant: by preventing ovulation {which I thought was the only way}, and then two more: to prevent the sperm from reaching the egg, and the third one was the real shocker: to prevent the egg from implanting in the uterus by changing the thick lining of the wall of the uterus and making it reject the egg.

No one had ever told me I could possibly be making my body reject a fertilized egg. As a Christian, I strongly believed that life begins at fertilization, and this was too much for me to take. It meant I could be aborting our babies. 

And oh, I prayed and prayed about it all. Hormonal birth control just seemed so wrong once I understood what it could do. And I won't even mention how witchy it made me feel all the time. Witchy and newly married is not a good combo, by the way.

So I brought all the facts to my new husband and he agreed with me right away. We decided not to use hormones anymore, and to welcome any children God would give us then. Within two weeks, we were pregnant with our first baby, Elijah.

I honestly wish I could say I never looked back and could leave this part out, but after having Noah 27 months after that first decision, I bought into fear and my own selfishness again, and took a lower-dose pill for a couple of months that didn't have that wording in the package. 

And I became a hormonal mess again thanks to those tiny blue pills. I regretted taking them within a couple weeks, because I was afraid of the truth of what could happen inside of me, and I knew how instantly my personality had changed when I started taking them. 

At the time, I was in full-time nursing school and working part-time every weekend with two babies and a young husband, but God didn't let go of me and leave me to myself. He changed my heart again, and gave me mercy and changed my path completely within a few months. 

I still regret those foolish two months today. It's even worse to me than the first time I took them. But God gives grace and forgiveness, and I ask for His mercy when I feel that guilt weighing on me.

finding out the facts

Now I realize that some of you know a ton about the mechanisms of birth control pills and IUD's, but some Christians do not have any idea what they can actually do in your body. And there's so much deception in our culture about these topics, which is not terribly surprising when we take a step back to see the truth about the blessings of children we find in the Bible.  

It's important to remember, that "in the absence of biblical conviction, people will go the way of culture."{Sally Clarkson}. The same is true here. We will go the way everyone else does unless we know the truth of God's Word.

I'm certainly no expert on the topic, but I think it's important to search out the facts as stewards of these lives God has given us. I can also testify that God has changed my life in a wonderful way because I chose to leave those hormones behind. I believe my marriage is so much happier than it would have been on those hormones that make you act and feel differently. And having children has changed me for good, and brought me even closer to God.

Everyone's story will be different of course, and there is much to consider in each situation that is between the Lord and the couple themselves when it comes to contraception. Every person should consider and pray about what God desires with their spouse, looking to the Bible for truth and the Holy Spirit for guidance, as well as examining their own hearts for their true motives. We both agree ours had been very selfish. 

I can't tell you what to do when it comes to contraceptives; I can only tell you my story, and point to what resources we have to help navigate this hard topic. I really and truly believe that issue of birth control is a huge one we need to bring to light in the Christian community, and I'm so, so glad that a large body of believers has addressed it in a very specific manner. 

a helpful resource

The Village Church, part of the Acts 29 network {like the church I'm in}, has prayerfully put together a very thorough but loving and un-legalistic view on contraception and artificial reproductive technologies. It's totally worth the time to read. It is saturated with the Gospel, but at the same time doesn't neglect the truth of the harmful sides of using some types of contraception.

Not everyone will agree with them or all of what they say, of course, but I think they do a very good job of addressing these issues with grace.

Here are a few excerpts:
Discussions about contraception and reproduction must also take into account the biblical blessing of offspring. Children are to be cherished as good gifts from a gracious God. Problems arise whenever this truth is forgotten or neglected. Some fail to embrace the goodness of the gift of children, instead viewing them as inconvenient. Others fail to remember that children are undeserved blessings that we are not entitled to. Neither disposition of the heart is healthy or right. Where children are neglected, disregarded, abused, idolized or demanded, God’s intention is compromised. As sons and daughters of a good and generous Father, we are called to possess humble and glad hearts that embrace the gifts that He has given and trust Him with those He has not.
......
In light of this reality, convenience, comfort and covetousness are not the lenses through which we are to evaluate medicine and science. Rather, our charge is to assess the use of contraceptive and reproductive technologies on the basis of the preservation and protection of human life. Forms that truly uphold and honor the sanctity of life for the glory of God are acceptable, while those that do not are not. Our God is good, and He has given us life in both creation and redemption. Let us be wise and faithful stewards of the gifts that He gives and trust Him even when inconvenient, uncomfortable and painful.

Here's the link again.

living for Jesus

I think it's so important that we remember that we have been given this life for the glory of God. It's not for ourselves. That's the hard part to remember for me.

The world tells you to do whatever makes you happy in this life. But Jesus says, love me with everything, and die to yourselves to find true life.

The world tells you to make money and much of yourself with your possessions and your abilities. But our Lord tells us not to worry about money, and to give up your possessions and abilities for the sake of Him and others.

The world tells you to forget about the person that hurt you. But Jesus tells us to forgive the person that hurt you, and love them.

Everywhere we turn, we are called to do the opposite of what the world tells us to do.

So with that in mind, I want to leave you with this question:

How closely does your opinion of children resemble the rest of the world's? And how closely do your actions reflect the same? 

Where else do you find yourself leaning into the way of the culture in this life?

Oh, I know we are never going to be perfect in this life, but it's so important that we give Jesus everything. All of us. All of our desires, everything we love to hold close to us. He is so worthy of every part of us, sweet friend. Ask Him for guidance in every single part of your life. He is so good. He will not lead you astray. You can give Him every part of your life, and put all of your trust in Him.

Oh, that we would love Him with all of us.



How has birth control affected your life? Do you have a story like mine? 
How have you seen God change your life with these topics? 

{and if you do comment or reply, please, please do so in love and with respect for your fellow believers. Unkindness will be deleted. :) }

186 comments

Elizabeth said...

You may also want to include a link to Natural Family Planning in this post. When most people hear "No birth control!" they automatically think "I don't want to end up with 20 children!"

There are ways for our bodies to prevent pregnancy the natural way - abstaining during the fertile days. There must be a reason that God made our cycles so that we are only fertile for a very short while each month and that once informed it is very easy to tell when that fertile time.

Bravo on introducing this topic. Too many Christians do not realize that the birth control pill does indeed prevent a fertilized egg from implanting!

Rachel said...

This is a very difficult subject for me. My husband and I married young and I was always on the pill. We had 2 young kids, a boy and a girl, and then decided we didn't want any more. At the time we were sort of going to church but neither of us was close to God or following Him, our life was all about us and what we wanted. We didn't even consider God, we did what we thought was right and my husband had a vasectomy. It's one the greatest regrets I have because now that my faith has grown I see what a mistake it was, how many little gifts from God I'm missing out on. I wish more than anything that we hadn't made that decision, but it's not something we can change. It's been 4 years and I still hurt thinking about it. So honestly, I think contraception is a very important subject that really needs to be looked at and researched before any permanent decisions are made. I wish more than anything that we had done that.

Anonymous said...

I am curious because I have debated this issue myself, but my husband weighs in on the other side, if not birth control pills, etc. then what if any method of contraception is okay or are we to have as many children as God blesses us with (even when it is above our current means to do so)?

terre said...

beautifully explained. If I were a young newlywed, I would probably fall in with your convictions about birth control. I did teach my daughter about these things though, since I found out about what the pill does and the IUD. it saddens me how uninformed young women are these days with so much information out there. I am glad you decided to wait on the carrot cake story and posted this instead.

Jami Thurkettle said...

Wow I have to say I really needed this! My husband and I have been really talking about this same thing. We just got married in September and since moving have really found God and been able to embrace Him in our lives. Since all of this we have both been trying to figure out our thoughts and His thoughts on Birth Control. I never knew about the three ways it stops me from getting pregnant. I am going to be doing tons of research to show my husband although I am sure your post alone will be enough for him.

Thank you so much for sharing your story. God Bless!

Jenna Dyer said...

I love this article...I currently have the mirena (IUD)...this article may have made me realize what it can possibly be doing to my insides...and babies...my husband really wants another baby (with have three boys:) and I am a CrossFitter and finally just saw my abs emerge...lol. I am getting very selfish and told him we are done...but just recently Father has been giving me dreams...and I think it's time to get the mirena out and keep it out...BUT....are we all meant to have dozens of kids????

Anonymous said...

This topis hits home with me today! I was recently prescribed low-dose hormonal birth control pills by my Gyn due to very heavy/frequent cycles which caused very low hemoglobin and hematocrit levels for me. I'm 37 and have had 3 children already. No, we don't really "want" any more children but, whatever is in God's plan is what we'll joyfully accept. We've been content with using natural birth control methods for years so I'm really struggling with taking these pills. (I'm on day #5 of them, BTW.) Of course, I want to get my cycles back to normal but, I'm not sure if I'm at peace with taking BC pills to accomplish this. Taking this to prayer everyday for direction!! Thanks for an enlightening, thought provoking post today! Love your blog!

Anonymous said...

What a brave post! I've been on both sides of the fertility conundrum. My husband and I were very similarly convicted about birth control about two months after our wedding. However, our situation was tricky, because he was in his mid thirties and I was still in my twenties. He was afraid of being an older dad and already has two awesome kids who we raise (one bio, one adopted). so we were careful, but then...I began to desire a child of my own yet couldn't conceive for three years. Still never once did I consider taking matters into my own hands. (I have known Christians who have, and no doubt their little ones are wonderful and beautiful blessings). Still, I see the many, many dangers of these methods. I stuck to trusting God, even when my heart was breaking. Two months after fully surrendering my desire to have kids to the Lord, the test was...positive! Yet even if it hadn't been, I'd already decided to find contentment with whatever God's plan for us was.
Also, let's not forget all the precious children waiting for loving, forever homes. they could easily fill that space in a childless couple's heart. And what a sacrifice of love it is to adopt a child!

Jenna Dyer said...

My heart is with you and pray for the healing of your heart. It's ok, it is done, praise God for the babies you have and cherish them :)

Rebekah @ Living && Learning said...

Mandy, such a beautiful post. My husband and I also choose to leave our family planning to God and though we do not have any children yet, it is such a blessing to know that it is in His hands and in His time. Thank you so much for sharing!

Anonymous said...

Just FYI also, there are herbal remedies for heavy cycles etc that DO work (I am living proof)! and they are not harmful, nor do they prevent pregnancy. Bulkherbstore.com is a great resource for this!

Amy Delmanto said...

I found your post on Pinterest! Thanks for sharing. I am not "for" or "against" birth control as a Christian. Since there are many forms of bc that prevent the egg and sperm from meeting, I am not opposed to Christians using it. I will say that no matter what a person's view is, they need to bring it before the Lord before making the decision. I decided to have a tube tying procedure and did not seek the Lord's guidance before doing it. I was very arrogant and thought that I knew best. The Lord had other plans for me and let me know it! It is a truly amazing story that will give you goose bumps! You can read the story in this blog post

http://bestlifemistake.blogspot.com/2012/12/that-is-strange-blog-title.html

Thanks,
Amy

Mandy said...

I know what you mean about the body thing. It was and has been a struggle for me. I miss my abs! :D I don't think we can all have dozens of kids {even if we let it all go}, or that we are all called to do that, but the question for me is one of trusting God with the issue instead of trying to control it for my desires.

I didn't address all the other methods of contraception, but I think the other article I linked to does a very good job. It's my opinion, of course, but I don't believe it's wrong to not have children, if the Lord is leading you and your husband both not to have children for the time. Some people have health issues and or sickness, or other things, but for me at the time I talked about, my reason was the stuff and the money, instead of being inconvenienced by having to take care of children, or give up what I wanted so I could take care of them. Does that make sense? :) Praying for you!!

Anonymous said...

Yes to this exactly. I often feel like im sinning because we abstain from sex on my fertile days but *we* really feel we dont want anymore children. I often onder how other christians feel about this. I remind myself if God wanted to give us another child He would make it happen being we do not use condoms or birth control. Stills feels weird tho.

sunflowerwife said...

Thank you for sharing your story! My husband and I had no intention of getting having children for a while when we got married, so I made an appointment with my doctor and found out I had PCOS and he told me the devastating news that without intervention from strong infertility medication, my chances of getting pregnant were close to nil. If course I went home in tears because I was going to get birth control and left with my doctor basically telling me to not bother. Long story short, my husband and I read the Bible and the Lord gave us peace that we should not only forgo birth control, but we made the decision to trust Him with our infertility and not seek any medical intervention. This story doesn't end with us getting pregnant, because trust God doesn't necessarily equal automatic cure. What it does mean, is that we have peace, and God has granted us, just like He granted you, with an incredibly blessed life and I wouldn't change a thing, even if it's not always easy.

Amy Delmanto said...

Rachel, maybe the Lord is leading you to another path? adoption or fostering?

Bethany said...

You're story is much like mine. Married at 21 and pregnant at 22. I got off the pill after learning the same thing about the coating of the uterus. Scary stuff for sure! We had 3 kids in 4 years : ) Bravo for taking on such a tough topic! I'm proud of you for standing up for this in a very Biblical nonjudgmental way!

Mandy said...

Thanks for your thoughts! I agree with you- there are good natural ways to prevent pregnancy. I hope to give more resources on the subject since it's so very broad. This was just meant to be my story and to introduce the general idea of hormonal birth control and what it's capable of, along with a resource to navigate the idea from the church. If you have any links, I'd love to read them!

readywriteruk said...

I first heard this preached well over a decade ago and so I believe you are right. The sad truth is that many women will find it hard to accept and obey but God bless you for sharing as you felt led.

Julianne said...

Your story is pretty similar to mine. I was married when I was 21, started on birth control pills right away so that I could go to nursing school. Fast forward 5 years when we had our first baby in 2002. After my daughter I never went back on the pill. In 2008 after our 4th child was born I decided to try an IUD without really reading about it. Of course the medical professional I saw told me it doesn't cause abortion and I believed her. Before getting it placed I had an uneasy feeling about it but didn't listen. I know God was trying to tell me not to go forward with it. Within just a couple weeks , still have this uneasy feeling I finally read about how it works. I was completely horrified that it does cause you to abort your fertilized egg- your baby. I had it removed but was so sad that I didn't listen to God's voice in the first place. But God is so gracious and gave us another baby last year. Ive been so blessed in my life , I get to stay home and watch my babies grow up. Thank you for your willingness to share your story , I truly believe so many women don't know the truth about these forms of birth control.

Anonymous said...

I would really be interested in hearing about which herbal remedies worked for you, if you wouldn't mind! I have been doing some research on this but it's nice to hear specifics from someone who's had actual success with them! Thanks for posting the link too!!

April McLeod said...

Mandy, I just want to say thank you. :) As a young woman who is looking towards the possibility of marriage in the near future (Lord willing), the subject of birth control has been on my heart and mind A LOT lately. And God keeps directing me towards blog posts and articles like these.

I knew about hormonal birth control and how it worked, and I am committed to NEVER using ANY form of birth control that includes abortion as a means of contraception. But I also continue to research the different methods and the opinions of wiser people than I, so I very much appreciate you posting about this topic and directing us to the link.

Mary said...

Thank you so much for this post. For a long time, I figured that when I got married, I would simply use the pill. So many Christians I knew were, so I just assumed it was the best option. But then I got engaged myself. In researching different pills and methods, I found the same problem you did. I couldn't make myself go through with any of them. Thankfully, God led me and my husband to Natural Family Planning. Honestly, it's given us a greater awe of our God : the way He designed even our fertility is so fascinating! It has been a blessing to us in so many ways, and I can't believe it's not more widely known and used in Christian circles. This is one topic I would love to see more churches speak of more in depth.

sarah said...

You should look for a natural remedy. I was just reading about how cinnamon can be helpful with cycles. A great source I use to find natural cures for just about anything is earth clinic.com ( no space buy my phone won't let me type it right)

Anonymous said...

I appreciated what you had to share. I pray that it will help change many hearts on this topic. We are due with #7 in a week or two. We never thought or planned to have this many children. We do not feel burdened, but truly blessed by God. If we had less children, we could do more things, and have more stuff. That's nothing compared to the beautiful children in my life. :)

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much Sarah! I do want to find a natural remedy as this is how I treat most other ailments for myself and my family. I've been reading so much conflicting info on the internet though re: cycle regulation and hormones etc! I will definitely check out the link you posted. God bless!!

Elizabeth@Warrior Wives said...

Well, I'm a birth control user and although I'm fully aware of the Christian objections against it, my husband and I have never had a problem with it, partly because I have had 3 c-sections and there are serious risks for continuing to get pregnant and needing surgery (my mom had 6 csections and had major complications that could have been life threatening).

I appreciate that you were not condemning or legalistic in your post, but I'l just throw this out there for discussion's sake. The thing that I have the hardest time not getting offended about when Christians talk about not using hormonal birth control is saying that people who use BC don't believe children are a blessing and that we all believe children are inconvenient. I absolutely believe children are a blessing and I love every single one of mine. Would I love a "surprise baby" who wasn't "planned"? Absolutely. In fact, I've already got one of those (from when we weren't using BC after Baby #1). Although I was shocked and overwhelmed to be pregnant again with a 6 month old, I would never EVER wish him away! I do believe that God is still in control of our family size because we've sought His guidance in regards to stopping and starting BC. If God laid it on our hearts that He had another child in store for us, we'd be obedient and quit using the BC and see what happened. I'm having "as many kids as God wants" too, but I'm going about it a different way. I'll grant that there are selfish people who limit family size with no seeking of God's will, but let's just be careful not to imply that all BC users are like that.

I would also guess that among the anti-hormonal BC crown, there are definitely people who only have kids because they feel like they are "supposed" to without a real love and appreciation of the blessing they are. Some are simply following rules rather than a real conviction. I don't think we should assume that everyone who does not take birth control is a better parent or more obedient to God than BC people.

Rachel said...

Thank you for the kind words Jenna!

Yes Amy, that's actually something my husband and I have just started talking about, something I don't know if we would have even considered before. I keep trying to tell myself that God can bring great things out of the mistakes we make.

Heather Pace said...

I'm kind of in the same situation. My reason for not taking birth control is actually a phobia. I'm just terrified of the possible complications of birth control and the only one I've ever felt comfortable taking is the pill which I forget. More recently, I have been giving more thought to it from the spiritual side and I wonder what is right? I have difficulty with that. My husband and I can't afford 20 kids like some people and I don't want to have that many kids, either. Lol. That's where it starts getting complicated for me. I find myself asking what the difference is between condoms and medicines. Then, I start to ask about the difference between condoms and abstaining during fertile days. If we use either of those methods, are we being smart and good stewards or are we still being selfish and not considering God's plans and how he views children?

The Hyde's said...

Wow, such a great read this morning. Thanks for sharing so openly! I read the article all the way through and it puts into much better words some thoughts and discussions I've been having with friends lately. I also posted the article on Facebook so that should be interesting ;)

Rachel said...

Wow what an amazing story Amy!! It all is truly in God's hands!!

Amy Delmanto said...

Rachel- keep praying about and the Lord will lead you! :)

Mandy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mandy said...

Hi Elizabeth! thanks for your thoughts! I can see where you're coming from- I know that is definitely true- because of one, doesn't mean the other. Using no birth control doesn't mean you're necessarily in God's plan, and planning your children doesn't mean you aren't in God's plan. He leads everyone differently, and we have to follow His leading as a family. I would never think every person who takes bc doesn't necessarily love Jesus or value children. :) I understand what you're saying though!

In this post, I wanted to share some of the questions I think we should ask about our motives for preventing children and if they are because of the Holy Spirit's leading as well as bring up some of the questionable side effects of hormones and devices that I think we should consider when making that kind of decision, and give a resources in regards to that. So many people haven't heard what they could do before. I truly believe God leads each couple through prayer and His word, and no one is going to fit into a "category" if that makes sense. There's no law there- only the Biblical truth that we should value life from it's beginning. It's only a decision between God and the couple- and for me, knowing the facts of the potential of what those hormones could do in my body kept us from using that form of birth control. :)

Anonymous said...

I spent 10 years on the BC pill, not realizing that it literally changed my personality and not in a good way. We originally decided the BC pill was okay, after much discussion, because God is all powerful and can stop its effects. I didn't realize the personality changes until I went off it to try to have our first child (of course, I was never aware of the abortive effects either). I felt soooo much better after getting off the BC pill. I'm not sure where I stand on barrier methods like condoms, but I certainly warn everyone about my experience with the BC pill and encourage them to avoid it now. On a personal note, we have been struggling with what is the right choice for us...we have two babies via c-sections and we worry about the harm of another c-section (particularly my husband), in addition I get gestational diabetes and last time I had to be on insulin shots (5 a day!) and baby was taken two weeks early due to my sugar levels. I told my husband that we need to trust the Lord to keep me safe and after some time he also began to feel the desire to have another baby. We are now newly expecting and this happened within a month of my husband's heart changing, amazing answer/blessing from the Lord!

Erica Hornor said...

Agree with you to not use hormonal b/c. However my husband,with his God given wisdom decided to have a vasectomy as both my pregnancies were life threatening. The second one just about killed my baby and me in the 7th month. We felt at peace when we decided it is better for me to live to see.my grandkids than to risk even another pregnancy.

Marcy said...

Thank you for sharing! We shared some of the same struggles, and as we searched Scripture more and more, we were led to realize that we were meant for more than the two babies we always thought we'd have. We prayed together that if He wanted us to have a 3rd, He was completely capable of making that happen despite our "natural" planning method...we found out we were pregnant two weeks later. That was pretty convincing for me! We are currently expecting our 4th at the end of July. If you had asked my college self if I ever would have more babies than adults in the house, I would've said you were crazy. :) It's still a daily test of my trusting in God's provision. Thank you so much for your words of truth here on this blog - your posts have truly ministered to me. Blessings!

redsfan01 said...

Great article. We married when I was 19 and I also took the pill for the first 6 months. We were also convicted in the same way and the hormones were affecting me in terrible ways. So, although we had no financial means to do so as I was still in college, we went off the pill 6 months into our marraige. I worried and prayed we conceive at the same time, if that makes any sense. We didn't conceive right away, but continues to trust God's timing.

This year (2013) we will celebrate our 19th anniversary and we still have no biological children. God has not chosen to move in this way. We adopted and will adopt again.

I share this to say, that I am so thankful that we decided to follow our convictions and stop the artificial hormones. But, we are not the typical story and I am ok with that. God has and will continue to receive the glory from it all.

Sheila said...

I'm 22 as of October. My husband and I got married in June 2011 and did not plan on getting pregnant for at least a year. We were both still in school and wanted to finish before becoming parents. I started out on hormonal birth control (Depo shot) but stopped after six months (after being married for 4 months) because of the side effects. I had terrible headaches and night sweats. We still didn't plan on having kids then but God had different plans. Even though we used more conventional forms of birth control, we found out we were pregnant after 5 months of marriage. We definitely freaked out but noe I wouldn't trade my almost 7 month old son for the world. My husband finished his masters degree a semester early and we made the decision that I would forgo the last semester of my bachelors degree in order to stay home with our son. And although we weren't planning to have another child right away, we just found out less than a week ago that we are expecting another little one this fall! Oh how God loves to show us again and again that our ways are not his ways and that he is the one really in control!

Anonymous said...

No problem! Red Raspberry tea (loose leaves, not the store bought kind) and nettle helped regulate my cycle in a big way! I make a tea once a day during the rest of my cycle, and three times a day during that week. So did staying away from products with parabens and other chemicals and eating less processed food. Not only do I feel healthier, I truly believe these are the things that led to my monthly "pain" being far less of a pain! For the first time since a teenager I feel normal!
The Bulk Herb Store is run by Christians also, which makes me love them even more.

Anonymous said...

Just a thought here - if we're going to trust God to give us the children we are supposed to have, don't you think He will make sure we can take care of them financially?
I used birth control pills when I was first married the first time; then other forms after my kids were born. I became pregnant with my younger daughter right before her dad and I were married, while using birth control. I KNOW she was meant to be... after her birth, I had my tubes tied, but now I regret that, because I have no idea what else God had planned for us in terms of children.
If we're going to trust God with our children's lives, we need to trust Him all the way... by knowing that if He gives us kids, He's going to give us the ability to raise them the way they need to be raised.

Laura said...

I got married in September as well! I was on birth control for maybe 2 months of our marriage before going off of it. Mainly, the reason was the hormones as well. But, there was also a big part of me that felt like I was "stopping God" from giving us kids when I was on the pill... my hormones were so out of whack, it was an easy decision for us to go off of b.c. Now we are doing Natural Family Planning, and so far, not pregnant!

Anonymous said...

It was purely by happenstance that I read this article. God is amazing in His ways. I have been seeking wisdom about b/c and just this week was given information on an IUD. I had NO idea that it caused the egg to abort! I am 43 years old with a 3 year old and a 1 year old....precious, precious boys. I started late in life (not purposely, just never met the right man to marry and start a family with). I have been agonizing over what to do for b/c because condoms are not cutting it. I am considering my age (though I don't FEEL like it, atleast no one slept last night!) especially. This has given me additional information to chew on and pray about. Do you know anyone who had children this late? I don't know any but surely if God felt it was a bad idea to have children now would he not stop the processes? I am aware that certain risks increase....so, as you can see I am truely conflicted. Yet.....what a gift another child would be......it's in his hands. I will continue seeking His face. Thank you again for this post!

Anonymous said...

correction to my post..."It was purely by happenstance!" Oops! I meant to say "UNLESS no one slept last night!" :) So much for proofreading!

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for taking the time to share your experience. I took Red Raspberry Leaf tea in the final weeks of my pregnancies! I am going to definitely look into this. The parabens in our personal products makes so much sense too! You've been a blessing to me today.

Anonymous said...

I was on the pill when my husband and I were first married. He kind of left that to me to decide what was best. I went off it though when we were married three months and we got pregnant six months later. When our first boy was 11 months old, I became pregnant with our second boy. And when THAT boy was 10 months old, I became pregnant with our third boy. It was at this point (three boys 3 and under) that my husband decided we would take a break and possibly even be done with having kids. I first went on the patch then on low dose birth control pills and because of my problems with endometriosis, I decided that the pills weren't worth it, as medication wasn't helping the way my doctors said it would. I just stay aware of when I'm fertile and that is how we have avoided pregnancy for the past 18 months. I still struggle with pain and difficult cycles, but my husband said he likes me better off the pill (he says I'm softer and more emotional, which is apparently a good thing, LOL!) Our youngest is almost two and we hope that God will add to our family sometime soon. I'm thankful that I don't have the stress of wondering if I'm preventing life from growing inside me and having that weight off my mind makes the possibility of an "unplanned pregnancy" much less stressful, actually. I actually think that the phrase "surprise pregnancy" or "unplanned pregnancy" is kind of amusing. :)
I was really struck by this line in the Village Church's piece on contraception: "Even more, all believers wrestling with these issues should feel a tension between the desire to bear children and a call to steward the gifts and opportunities that they are given for the sake of the kingdom." That is exactly where we're at right now. My husband felt that it was more important to take care of what God had given us than to add to our wonderful group if we were struggling with certain issues in our home. I am grateful that I followed my husband on this because our middle son, who was struggling with behavioral issues is showing the fruit of me focusing on him at home more and spending more time with him. I hope and pray that God will bless our efforts to take care of what He has blessed us with.
Thanks for taking the time to write all this out! It was really encouraging!
Betsy

vickie hubbard said...

I am so glad to see this topic covered. My story is the other side to yours. Married at 19, but I just knew kids weren't in the cards for us right then. We were so young, practically babies ourselves. I stayed on the pill for 5 years until God brought an older friend of my husbands to stay with us. He asked some very pointed (and I still say inappropriate for mixed company ;)...) questions that I had not considered; particularly that I was making God force his will on me with my rationalization that women get pregnant on the pill all the time and when he wanted me to, I would. But God used that irritating man to get my attention; I probably would have missed it otherwise. I realized that I was actively refusing to trust God to make the best choice for me. My husband and I discussed it, but I was still scared and I asked him for more time. Three weeks after the visit from the friend, I went to youth camp as a sponsor with our church, and as I searched for my pills, I couldn't find them. To me it was funny, it was like God had said wake up, think about it, and GO! I was just like Ok, God I get it, I will trust you and not me. It has now been 5 years, and I've had at least one early term miscarriage, and I have to wonder about the side affects of the years I spent on the pill. One thing I have to actively avoid is wondering if I'm being punished for my disobedience. God does not work that way. In the early days after I stopped taking the pill, I took comfort in the verses about Leah and Rachel. It specifically says God opened their wombs and he closed them. HE was in control then and HE is now. I have also learned that having babies is not only about the parents, it's about the babies too. God's timing for their lives is better than anything I could come up with. I think that's the most important lesson for me, to trust in God and wait patiently for his will. Thanks again for posting something so personal, and allowing a safe place for women to share and learn.

Jennifer Ackerman said...

I still see problems with hormonal birth control, or rhythm method, or any of those types of things. It boils down to you are still trying to control when you have kids. Using the excuse that God can get you pregnant whenever He wants is not a very good argument....Does God always do the miraculous in trying to get His people to follow Him? He's already told you children are a blessing so why avoid them? I don't understand that reasoning. Yes I have a story...I went so far as to have my tubes tied. Did I ask God about that decision??? NO. I chose it myself and my husband also because we were selfish. God provided for me to have a reversal done (several years later) but let me tell you, those were miserable years!! Why do we think we know best when it comes to how many children we should have? Aren't Gods thought higher than ours??

Jennifer Ackerman said...

There are reversals available.

Wise_Woman said...

Hi! I had my youngest at 41. We hoped God would give us more children (we had one miscarriage/daughter and a boy and a girl) but He did not (that I know of). :) A friend of mine just had a son at age 46 and he has a very mild case of Down's; he is greatly loved. May the Lord guide you in how He wants you and your husband to steward your sexuality. Blessings!

Anonymous said...

I have got to say that I do not agree with a lot of what you are saying and find it extremely discouraging. My husband and I prayed and prayed for direction in this issue and we both felt that having an iud placed about a year after our son was born was the right thing to do. There is no way that we could afford to sustain another child in our family, and I am not saying that out of selfishness, or thinking that children are inconvenient. We work both work so hard to do the best we can for our family. We would love to be able to welcome a child into our home, but as I said, there is just absolutely no way we can afford to responsibly care for that child. I think that is respectable and honorable, would you rather families like ours continue to have children when we can't afford to care for, bringing them up in poor health and education, relying on the government and other tax payers to give us food to eat? I don't think its an issue of having faith that God would provide for us if we had a second child, it comes down to being a good steward of the child we already have been blessed with. I believe that we will be judged by the way in which we judge others, and while this post doesn't necessarily condemn birth control, it certainly suggests that it is immoral and does not comply with your average "christians" set of standards. I truly have peace about the birth control I am on, and I am educated, and have read and talked to my own doctor about the issues brought up about iuds. My own doctor has delivered several babies who were conceived while the women were on the iud we are currently using, so just because a lot of women post scary stories on the web doesn't mean that a) they are true and b) they will happen to you. On a second note, my son did A LOT of damage to my body in both pregnancy and birth, like, I could have died kind of damage. I don't think it is selfish to choose not to have more children and take the risk of causing my son to loose his mother. And on a THIRD NOTE what is the difference between a man pulling out during sex and a woman being on birth control? Is it not the same as aborting a future child by not allowing that child to potentially exist? I mean how far can you take it? I believe that life begins at conception, but you could totally argue that not giving that child a chance to be conceived is that same as aborting them! In the book of John is talks about becoming a child of God, "who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God." if children born can be "of the will of man" meaning it was socially and culturally acceptable for a man to prevent pregnancy or not (by which ever forms of birth control they had at the time which I can assume was mostly pulling out) why is it different for a woman? Let each couple decide for themselves through prayer and reading of scripture, not through guilt and misrepresentation, and let the Lord deal with them accordingly, and with the Grace that he gives.

Shawn, Kellie, Arielle and Anna said...

Thank you so much for your vulnerability in sharing! God is so faithful to lead and direct us isn't He?! My husband and I took Natural Family Planning classes before we got married. We used it for about a month before my husband felt led in a different direction. He felt we needed to trust God fully with the timing and planning of our children. I was totally freaked out and literally told him: "but honey, we can't trust God with...everything". Wow, the second that left my mouth, I knew I needed a change of heart and perspective. I followed my husbands lead and we just had unprotected sex whenever we wanted : ) haha... Then came my God-moment. I was actually at a prayer gathering, praying for the ending of abortion, when the Lord spoke to my heart: "here you are interceding for these children, but you are not even open to a child in your own marriage". Ouch. From that moment He graciously changed my heart and I started asking Him for a child. We were pregnant within a week.
It hasn't been an easy road, but it's been a joyful one. I have had 3 babies in 4 years : ) He is soooo good. He has completely changed me from the person I was. I didn't want to let go of control, I didn't want to let go of my identity that was so wrapped up in my career. But He knows me, He formed me, He knows what is best for me, and really as I have opened my hand, releasing my life to Him, He has opened His hand of blessing.
To be honest, I still struggle with a lot of fear. How many kids does God want us to have? I have a certain number on my heart, but don't know if that's just what I'm comfortable with or if that's really how many He desires us to have. Whenever fear rises up, which it does (I mean who wants to be one of "those...families", you know those who need a small bus to fit the entire family- seriously one of my vain thoughts : ( Oh Lord help me ), when that voice of fear rises up I remind my soul that if He has directed and led us this far, He will continue to do so.
God's heart is burning for godly families. Burning for this generation of children. He is good. He is trustworthy. We really can pour out our all at His feet...isnt He worthy?!
Thanks again for this post : )
Kellie

Anonymous said...

My husband and I were 19 & 20 when we got married. I was on birth control for two years. It made me gain weight, feel awful, and not so kind. I went to a.doctor and found out that I needed to get off of birth control because it ruined my body :( I had no cycle for 4 years total!!! We finally had our first child afyer 5 years of marriage and I will not go back on birth control ever again! We have 2 boys now and still debating on more but we have been on natural family planning for 6 years :)

Shawn, Kellie, Arielle and Anna said...

I love those verses about God opening and closing the womb. He really is in control and we can trust His timing! Thanks for sharing!
Kellie

Tam said...

I loved reading your story and I am very impressed that you had the maturity at such a young age to listen to God's leading- even with a few lapses. I share your convictions about potentially abortive methods. I am 47 and I have never used any hormonal birth control. I got married when I was 23 but I knew my husband for 8 years before that. We had already discussed before we got married that we were both against using anything other than barrier methods. We have only done even that for a few of the 25 years we have been married and we have 4 children. It took me 3 years to get pregnant the first time and two years+ the other times. Not every woman has the fertility or a sturdy enough uterus to have 20 kids. ha We used birth control only during the first months after giving birth because I felt it was best for the baby to nurse for the first year and we felt it was wise not to risk having back to back pregnancies since mine were all rather complicated. I now know that probably would not have happened anyway, but hindsight is 20/20. When I had my 4th child at 38 and had to have a c-section, my husband and I agreed that more pregnancies would not be a good idea. I prayerfully got a tubal ligation. My prayer was, "God this is what looks like wisdom to me. If it is not your will, I willingly invite you to circumvent it." He has not done so. :-) I do believe that barrier birth control can be (prayerfully) an option for a Christian because our bodies are made for the purpose of reproducing and unless you are celibate or an expert at working with your cycle, you will likely get pregnant. God does not "open and close" people's wombs anymore, apparently. (Ask the 13 year old rape victim I know who got pregnant.) While I do think most people miss a huge blessing by only having 2 or less kids, I don't believe every family needs unlimited children. I think God gave us brains for a reason. I've known 4 or 5 women who get pregnant EVERY time they have intercourse unless they are already pregnant. I know a woman who had 3 children, 10 and 11 months between them, at age 23. Even with professional help in trying to use natural/abstaining methods. She was barely able to take care of her children because her body was so depleted. I would never judge anyone for using non-abortive methods if they truly are capable of having 20 kids and do not believe that that is God's will for them. Everything should be done with humbleness and reverence to God and He will lead you to what is best.


I have very strong feelings about in vitro and other "drastic" measures because I have seen several woman go through it. I cannot live someone else's relationship with God, but I do not believe that, based on the fruit I've seen come of it, that it is consistent with God's will.

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Karen said...

Your timing on this was so of God! I was sitting in my OB/GYN office waiting on a follicle check for our upcoming IUI procedure. Long story short, we started "trying" for a second child almost 6 years ago. After a year we went through fertility testing, tried various medications and I had surgery to remove endometriosis. When we still weren't pregnant after 6 more months, my dr suggested IUI. The day before we were to go in to discuss it with her, I was praying a felt God giving me a very firm no...that He wanted us to wait and trust in Him. I cried for 3 days after, but then through a friend He gave me confirmation and peace. I would love to say the next 3 1/2 years we waited very patiently, and often we did, but we had our ups and downs and downs as well. But what God has done in the meantime I wouldn't trade...my husband has accepted Christ, my relationship with God has grown immeasurably as I've learned to abide in him not just for this, but for all things. Somewhere along the way, my prayers changed from "God I want a baby," to "God, I want you to be glorified-" This has made the waiting so much easier- knowing that it is all for His glory! Along the way, numerous times God has, through scripture, and through other believers, confirmed a clear promise we heard, that He would bless us with more children. Last summer, after praying with my hubby, we both felt God was telling us it was time to "move" in this, and as we have sought Him every step of the way, He has led us down a path toward IUI. It would take too long to describe all the little miracles He has worked in this :-) But we still pray before every appt, as our hearts' desire is to only walk in His will in this. So back to today, after praying in my car, I walked in and sat down to wait, and as I was glancing at Facebook on my phone, your post popped up. I knew immediately that I was meant to read it, and the link to the article from Village Church. I'll admit in my flesh that I was a little nervous that God might use it to alter our path, but after reading both, I felt complete peace and confirmation that the path we are on is directed by Him. Thank you so much for sharing your heart today :-)

Liv said...

I have friends that had 6 kids, the oldest 22 and the youngest 9 when the 45 year old momma got pregnant...it was her easiest pregnancy and they now have a completely healthy 2 yo. :)

Sam Kelley said...

We came to the same conclusion before we knew the facts. It just didn't seem right. When I found out the truth, I was thankful to have abstained from using them. My friends all think I am nuts. I just want to be right with God. We are blessed with 6 gifts.

Sarah said...

I have had similar convictions. We are now pregnant with baby number 4. We are so excited, but it is the number we had always "planned". But within the past couple years I have been feeling it on my heart that we need to give this up to God. I spoke to my husband about my convictions and he felt the same exact way. But to be honest I am terrified. All my children have been a blessing. I haven't always been a strong Christian, but through marriage and children I have found that God leads us in ways I never thought possible. That if we listen to that voice, and follow the truth it is never wrong. So I know in my heart that we need to follow Him now. But I do get scared looking in the future, I am only 28, already on baby #4, what if God blesses us with 10, how would I handle that? I struggle with my 3. How would we be able to afford that? What if God chose to take my husband, how would I be able to care for them all on my own, and support us? The what if's are what I fear. But I know that I need to put all my faith in God, and trust that he will only give me what I can handle. And that if any of those what if's happen that they are meant to happen, and that they will lead us down the path that will bring us closer to Him. Trust and faith isn't always rewarded with a perfect life, but I have found over and over again over the past 6 years that when we have that faith it always leads in a direction that pulls me closer to my God, and that's what our life really should be about anyways. Thank you very much for your lovely story, it really has made me think about what I already knew was the right choice, and has made me feel even more convicted to leave my fertility up to Him.

Kathleen said...

Is it all birth control that you deem wrong? I was on the pill when we first got married. I suffered from many side effects and I stopped it after a while. We used condoms until we were ready to have children. My first son died the same day he was born. We found out that he had a genetic disease. I did decide to get pregnant 2 more times and those were the biggest steps of faith I have even taken in my life. Thankfully they are healthy. After my last, I was 40 yrs old and I had my tubes tied. I consider myself a committed Christian and I have never felt guilty at all. I believe there is a lot of controversy considering modern medicine but God gives us wisdom to use it. There are a lot of people out there that have real health concerns for the mom or baby and it's unrealistic to believe that a mom or baby never dies. There are also real financial concerns for families that can't afford a large family. You are very blessed but a lot of families would have to forego any house repairs, date nights, vacations, clothes, etc to have 5 or more children.
I totally commend you and admire you for your decision and think it's beautiful but I don't think it's for everyone.

Mellissa Rose said...

In response to: "if we're going to trust God to give us the children we are supposed to have, don't you think He will make sure we can take care of them financially?"

There are a lot of 3rd world countries that don't use any form of birth control. They have a lot of children and they cannot afford to have them. They are not able to financially support those children. Your statement leads one to believe that God will give a parent the ability to take of them financially but that is not always the case.

Just a thought.

Mellissa Rose said...

Thank you so much for your openness and information on the subject! I had NO idea that birth control pills did that - wow! I haven't taken them in years but I am cringing inside knowing that a fertilized egg may have been rejected.

My husband had a vasectomy years ago. I would have loved to have children but I am at peace with not having them after surrendering to God. I am going to forward this blog link to him.

Thank you again. You have a lovely family and I am a regular follower.

Anonymous said...

I had no idea that bc prevented a fertilized egg from implanting in the uterus. I had two children in my early twenties, took bc for several years after that. My husband and I decided to have another baby right before we hit 30. A few months later I got pregnant with twins. Having two babies at a time scared me to death. Nobody in my extended family (other than great grand-parents) had more than 3 kids. My husband and I decided with little to no discussion that I would get my tubes tied immediately after the twins c-section delivery. It's been almost 9 years and my heart breaks to think of the selfishness and arrogance that possessed my heart at that time. My husband and I have been blessed with 4 healthy boys 18, 15, and two that are almost 9. I think the Lord knows each and every moment of our lives before we are even born. I take comfort in the fact that God has endless mercy and grace for us all so I try not to beat myself up over the past. He knows the desires of our hearts and he wants us to live life and have it to the full. Mandy, Until I read this post today I did not know bc works in 3 ways. Thank you for putting this information out there. And God bless you and your beautiful growing family. You are an inspiration.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing this. I have felt guilt over taking the pill. I too did not know until late in the game that the pill may be stopping implantation of a fertilized egg. I thought it simply stopped ovulation. When I learned this info, I did not know what to do. I am sorry to say, I took the rest of that pack of pills. I should have thrown them away immediately. The pill did give me mood swings to some degree but a worse problem for me was that after 8 months or so of being on them (maybe less) I started having pain with intimacy. I tried lots of things to stop the pain, drastic things suggested by my doctor. One included surgery. I got off the pill and within a month or two, it stopped. I told the doctor and to this day, he will not agree that had anything to do with it. Later I saw a doctor on Good Morning America say they have discovered that the pill can do just what it did to me. I would not advise anyone to take the pill.
Sheila

Adrienne F said...

We came to the same conclusion before my husband and I were married. We have a family I never expected - six kids in eight years. I'm so glad we didn't do things differently. It's been an amazing journey. Thanks for your post. So much more edifying than carrot cake! ;)

Toni Taylor said...

After reading your story,I feel led to share with you my testimony.I was married at 19.After having 2 girls we thought we were done & 3 months after we had our 2nd child, my husband had a vasectomy. At that time in our marriage,we were not walking with the Lord so needless to say we did not take that decision before the Lord.The 1st 4 years after his vasectomy,we were completely fine with the decision we had made,however the next 4 years were very hard for me.I wanted another baby so badly & was also so sadden by the decision that we had made.During that time, I had some amazing women that the Lord had brought into my life and they had shared with me the Love of Jesus Christ and I accepted Him as my personal Lord and Savior With that, my husband did the same & so began our journey after 10 years of marriage we were walking with the Lord.I prayed so much that the Lord would somehow make it possible for us to get pregnant again, but it cost 15,000 for a reversal. We just did not have that kind of money.I had shared my desire with my sisters in Christ and had a very strong prayer support system! In 2002 we had an urologist move into our area. At this point it had been 8 years since my husband had had his vasectomy & we were not very optimistic that it would be a success.After me met with him, it was only going to cost us 3500.00 and he said that we had a good chance of success.For my Christmas gift that year, my husband had his reversal done Dec. 2002.It was so hard for me to even comprehend that this was happening and that there was a chance we could have another baby.After the surgery,the doctor said that things went well and that he needed to come in for a checkup in Mar. 2003.We went to that appointment and were given some very disappointing news. There was very little sperm.I was devastated.I couldn’t understand why the Lord was doing this. I truly felt that He had opened the doors for this. My husband had one final exam that June.I was still in my pity party and of course not trusting in God's will or timing and didn't want to go to the appointment but went anyways.As we were sitting there waiting, the doctor flew in the room and said that we had to come see this.We went into the other room where there was a microscope and he instructed us to take look.Well,there were millions of "little swimmers" in there!He said that he wanted a baby in his office within a year.We left there in shock.Again on the roller coaster of emotions.We spent the next year trying and no baby. Again I couldn't understand why.I am so thankful for the amazing Christian friends that the Lord had blessed me with.They were such a great support system.One day in May of 2004, one of them came by my home and I shared with her my heartache and disappointment.I told her that I was trying so hard to understand why God's answer was no.She had amazing words of encouragement and prayed over me that day.From that moment on, I let it go and was trusting in God's timing, NOT MINE!Two weeks later I found out that I was pregnant and on 2-4-05 the Lord blessed us with a baby boy.It has been eight years and it still brings me to tears when I share about the amazing thing God did for us.I felt led to share this with you even though we have never met.I wanted to share with you about God's grace and mercy.That through this,He showed me that it is not about our timing, but His.It was about me trusting in what God had planned for me and my husband.I had to finally let go and realize that maybe God's answer could have been no and that was hard for me to take.I had to trust that He had a plan and a lesson for me to learn each step of the way.It was taking that step of obedience and knowing that His plan is so much better than we could ever imagine.I hope this was of some encouragement and if you have any questions,or would like to talk,I would love to visit with you.I will be praying for you and your husband.

natasha said...

Thank you for your post. We, too, struggled with the birth control decision, being on the pill/patch in our early married years. I had the same side effects as you: just plain crazy hormonal sometimes! I was thrilled when I learned the Fertility Awareness Method when we were trying for our first child. We have used it to prevent children when we felt the need to recuperate after a birth, and it still left the door slightly open for God to give us a "surprise" baby (the BEST surprise of our lives). We are expecting #4, and are mulling over what God will have us do after this as we are in our mid-30s now. It's funny, in our culture we have kids for selfish reasons (experience) and we stop for selfish reasons. Finding the true motivation for either is the key to following the Lord's leading and not our own heart (can't trust it!). I wish more Christians would take this decision seriously as well.

Jari said...

Great article!!! I really needed to read this. I am going to pray about the use of contraceptives!! When I was 18, I was using birth control pills, because I was a wild teen!!! (not afraid to post this, because it is the truth). I gotten pregnant at 18 with a guy that I wasn't married too, or even had a real relationship with! Well after having my oldest, I went back on the pill. I might my wonderful man and gotten pregnant again!!! Not even a few months after my son, I got pregnant again, with my youngest!!! After that, my man and I were convinced that we were done, since he has an older son and now we have 4 kids. Well, I was on the Depo shot, for 5 years!!! I can say that it did work, and I didn't get pregnant. However the shot was harming my body. I had terrible mood swings, uncontrollable weight gain, my hair was falling out, and my teeth were rotting. Talk about terrible. I believe that being on the shot and the terrible mood swings affected my relationship with my man and we eventually split because of it. My family was torn. I have made a decision last July, that I was not going to receive anymore shots. This hurt my man because he is afraid that I will get pregnant again. But after talking to him and going to marriage counseling, we both agree that I am much happier without the shots and I am beginning to look a lot more sexier (yay I am losing weight).
Right now I am not on anything, and I have am not pregnant. I am hoping that I can have more babies because the doctor told me that since I was on the depo for so long, that I might not be able to have anymore kids. I am 27 years old, and I am still young enough to have kids and I will love to have more and welcome as many as God will give us!!!

Hello, I am Heather said...

I'm so glad you wrote this! After 10 years of being on birth control I was convicted last summer to stop it all together as well. We now practice Natural Family Planning. I read Randy Alcorn's - Does the birth control pill cause abortions?. After reading this book, I knew I had to stop immediately, but I will admit it wasn't that easy, it took me a month or so to actually stop. One day I had to just stop and give God the control. He has a plan for our lives and I had to trust him. By taking the pills I was telling him that I didn't trust that he had the control. I had no idea the whole time what the pills were actually doing and what children might have been lost, it breaks my heart to know the truth. Worst off I almost got an IUD after my third child, thank God I read this book and found out what it really was. We as women in American society are completely mislead, I realize now that I needed to take accountability for what I was putting into my body. I thought I "knew" the facts but I was dead wrong. Great article, you took the thoughts out of my mind!

Susan said...

My mom had me when she was 42 and she says it was her greatest blessing. She actually had an IUD at the time, but had lost a lot of weight and it did not fit properly, so Surprise!! :) Actually back then, it was pretty much unheard of to have a baby at that age and her first OB would not deliver me because she believed that I would have Down's Syndrome or some other disabilities and she did not want that on her record. If my mom had not become a Christian several years earlier she probably would have taken her advice to abort me, but because she was saved she knew God gave her this child at her age for a reason, and I was born perfectly healthy. The only thing I will say for having older parents is that I know I will not have them for as long as many of my peers will have theirs, that is hard for me. I was born when my older brothers were teenagers, so I got to have my parents all to myself a lot and I am extremely close to them. There were many benefits to having older parents: they have more money, time, wisdom and patience..............its just hard to know that I will have to say goodbye to them much sooner than others.

Crystal said...

After a battle with cancer at 17, I was told that I would not be able to have children. The issue of birth control seemed mute. Two children later, I had the Merina IUD put in. I did some research on it before hand, research I had been handed at my doctor's office. A few years later, I was pregnant again, but the IUD was still in place and caused a miscarriage. I became deeply depressed. A miscarriage would have been enough to go through emotionally, but to have one as the result of a divice I had put into my body was absolutely devastating. To make matters worse, my doctor tried to convince me that just because the IUD had prevented pregnancy once didn't mean it would do so again and I should continue using it. In her eyes it had actually done it's job by preventing a "successful pregnancy." Needless to say, I found a new doctor. My husband and I stopped using birth control. Our oldest is now 13 and this spring we very happily will be welcoming home our 4th child.

Susan said...

My husband and I are Christians and have been all our lives. I have a chronic illness and have probably had it since I was 13, I am 33 now. My husband met me during the worst time in my illness and we both knew going in that children might not be an option. I have never been on the pill as I have been on so much medication and really don't want to be on anything I don't have to be on. I also see an MD who is also a holistic doctor(He is also Jewish) and he does not like the idea of chemically preventing women from having babies. My husband and I use condoms and we are leaving it in God's hands because if He wants me to get pregnant I will regardless. There is a possibility that my illness could be passed on to our children and that's why we are afraid to just take the plunge. We have laid it before God and said that we have fears about the health of future children and about my even being healthy enough to care for them, but if He sends them we will know that it is His will and that we will be ok. He has given us a great marriage though, and if they are not meant to be a part of our life it is ok, we will just continue to try and be the best aunt and uncle that we can be. I have wondered before what God think of birth control, I just feel we have a lot more at stake because there is illness involved.

Ashley W. said...

Thank you all for sharing! Mandy, your story is so timely. I have just had my second child and am on week 3 of my first "mini pill" pack, but am still considering if I should be using it. Contraception is a topic very heavy on my heart because of my story. Very similar to Crystal....After 4 years of the pill and the birth of my first child, I decided to go with the non-hormonal IUD. I did lots of research, but chose to be ignorant of the risks. A year ago this month, I found out I was pregnant and had the IUD removed, then 2 days later had a miscarriage. My and my husband's world was rocked and I was depressed as well. Thankfully the Lord has blessed us with Alden, less than a year after the miscarriage, but I still sometimes feel guilty for having the IUD. I'm gonna talk to my husband tonight about us trying "natural planning" and getting off this hormone, which does not make me feel "normal" either.

Kenzie @ Chasing Happy said...

My husband and I also use Natural Family Planning (Creighton method) instead of birth control. And I've heard to argument about it being just another form of birth control before. But I think it has a lot to do with your mindset. God asks us to be open to having children as a result of the "marital act." So, if in your heart you are willing to be His servant should He bless you with a little kiddo, I think you're going about it the right way.

And yes, I do think He does miraculous things to get His people to follow him. A person turning away from sin and choosing God's will over his or her own... that's nothing short of miraculous.

Lisa said...

My story is a bit different mainly because I didn't marry until 30, and because by that point in my life a seemingly tragic event had happened. My sister (married when she was 22-ish) was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma when she was 27. She was told to avoid the 'pill' at all costs as it can be one of the causes of cancer. Anything that alters the hormones in the body (soy, aluminum products in anti-perspirant, chemicals...pesticides, and the pill) has a direct effect on the nervous system. At the end of the chemo, they told her she may never be able to have children. Thankfully, that was not so. Hubby and I use natural planning. It isn't great on the body to be pregnant within the same year. I'm a firm believer that we are to be stewards of what we have...that's the house, kids, etc. People think differently about having kids, and some people want to have as many as possible. I just want to have as many as I can sanely take care of, and love on. I don't want my job as Mommy to fall on my kids because I have so many. In my view that is part of being a good steward of what he gives.

Jessica B. said...

My story is very similar. I went off birth control at age 25, after being married for 6 years. I have many reproductive health issues that I believe are all related to my years of popping "the pill." God convicted both my husband and I and as soon as I also found out it causes spontaneous abortion, it was a no-brainer for me to stop. I repented as well. God has blessed us with one beautiful daughter since that decision almost 6 years ago and we would welcome as many children as God would have for us.

Thank you for your boldness and stance. God's Word really CAN speak to every issue today, even contraception. Blessings to you and yours!

Anonymous said...

I really don't think Mandy's post was meant to condemn or call anyone e immoral...rather, she wanted people to really consider their reasons for birth control and also to inform women that yes, stopping the implanting of a fertilized egg with hormonal birth Control is no different than the Plan B pill. Your reasons for birth control sound as though you sought the Lord and considered the cost. Many couples have not done that yet...

Anonymous said...

My story is somewhat similar to Toni's. After 4 kids in 3 years, my husband said no more because he was sick with his autoimmune disease. I didn't agree with this decision but sadly went along with it. I immediately began praying it would fail. We got into fostering & tried to adopt only to have 2 failed adoptions. We found a place to do a vasectomy reversal for a little under $5,000 so we took a leap of faith. A few months later I was pregnant. Sadly our child had a fatal condition & died the day after birth (but what an amazing story his is!!). Long story short, I am currently expecting #7 (our 3rd post-reversal) baby. Pray about a reversal, maybe it's an option for you.

JoyBelle said...

My husband and I share the same views that you posted about. Thank you for sharing and sharing so eloquently! I have never used birth control so I cannot speak of any experience in that regard. I will say that on top of the abortion issue the pills themselves wreak havoc on women and their bodies. I like that you said that when people do not have God they turn to culture and do what is culturally acceptable. I'd be highly interested to read a post about your views on vaccinations.

Rachel said...

Thank you both so much for sharing your experiences with me! It really means a lot to hear your stories and know that I'm not alone. I've been praying for God to do with me what He sees fit and for me to longer go after what I want. I've even considered and looked into reversals but I don't feel God leading us in that way, maybe now is just not the time for us. Thank you for praying for my husband and I Toni, your words were truly encouraging!

Kelly said...

Awesome story! I have Endometriosis which causes me to not ovulate at the same time each month...so counting days and such natural family planning didn't work for us. We have three babes 3 and under. :) After our last baby, we found out about a little machine that you take your temperature with every morning and it does all the recording and gives you a green or red light when you're fertile/infertile. It's amazing and so easy! And it works! :) Anyway, I just thought if you did another post about resources, you might want to include this option. It's called Lady-Comp and here's the link: http://www.lady-comp.com/en/

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure if my story will help you, but when I was 15 I was put on the pill by my doctor to think my blood. I was having severe kidney infections every time I would get a period, the thought was that if the blood was thinner it would not cause issues with bladder and kidney. I took if for a couple years before kidney issues were resolved. When I was 24 I married the love of my life and started the pill, after a month I felt like I was overly emotional, so I stopped taking it. Weeks later I was pregnant. We were overjoyed! However, at 7 weeks I miscarried. Nobody but someone who has been through it knows the weight of that. During the next year we went on to get pregnant, and miscarry for a total of 4 times. I struggled with feeling like I was being punished for BC and also anger that God would allow me to get pregnant only to say goodbye. I should mention that we never tried to get pregnant, my cycles have never been anywhere near normal so the counting of days that I was attempting did not work. The doctor told me that he thought my lining of the uterus had something to do with it. ( Because of the birth control) I tried to think of adoption but we never felt led to it. I began to pray that God would heal me or take away the desire to carry a child and raise them. Suffice it to say that we now have a beautiful 2 month old little girl. :) Don't give up the hope if God has given you the desire. He loves you more than you can imagine and gave you those desires for a reason. :)

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

I completely understand and empathize with these posts. I am 29 year old mom who has two children 12 months apart. I have used birth control since I was sixteen due to problems with my cycles. Once I got married and we decided to have children I stopped taking BC pills. A year later I had my son and then found out I pregnant with my daughter when my son was just three months old. I had used the nuva ring then. My husband and I have decided that we dont want to expand our family anymore due to health reasons. I have had two c sections where I was put to sleep and I have steel rods in my back due to scoliosis. I believe the Lord blessed us with our son and daughter so early in order for us to fulfill our call to be parents. I thank him everyday for our children. We have also spoke about adopting in the future if the Lord leads us in that direction.
I think the bottom line is that as a family you should always put God first and let Him lead you in every decision no matter if the answr is what you want or not.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for all of your kind responses. I have so much to think about... The Lord tells us to ask for wisdom, so that is what I am doing. Thank you for the insight. Susan, thank you for yours as well, what an awesome story! The doctors don't always know what's best...they know truth but not THE Truth! :) My father was 52 when I was born (and I'm the middle child of five), so I understand saying goodbye sooner. He died 5 years ago, at the age of 90, and I miss him dearly. We were very close as well, he absolutely had my heart. The biggest regret that I have is that he isn't here to see my boys, but I know he's our biggest advocate in heaven! My best friend's father, died of cancer when she was in her 20s so we never do know, do we? I have always taken good care of myself so my biggest prayer is that I stay healthy and strong til looooong after grandchildren are born! These two boys have been the most incredible blessing to me, in so many ways, I can't imagine what my life would be without them now! As for the future, I'm praying and seeking and trying to find the answers. And even more importantly, trying to find intimacy with my husband without the fear of anything unintended or using BC that violates our faith (if we DO decide, ultimately, that we are through). On the other hand, if we do become pregnant again, dealing with the inevitable negativity from some people about it and my fears as well, but knowing that one more would be another beautiful facet to our family. In the end, I know that if we decide with hearts toward the Lord, things will work out exactly as they should! Thank you again for all the thoughts...be blessed as you have blessed me! :)

Mandy said...

oh, He gives us so much grace doesn't he! I didn't know either, and then I did and did it anyway. :( I'm so thankful for His forgiveness for my pride and fear. Thank you for telling your story!! I think it's so helpful to those looking for stories of the tubal too- others are looking at doing it, and it's something we need to tell what it feels like years later- I've had so many friends feel the same as you did after years. You are being a wonderful Titus 2 woman for us by sharing your heart of what you've been through. Thank you for your sweet words!

Mandy said...

oh wow!! I've never heard of that before!! I know lots who would be interested in looking that up! thank you for sharing!

Lara said...

This is obviously a hot topic among women, eh? :) Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Mandi. I totally admire your conviction and faith. I was on birth control for 8 months of our marriage, but I did not like what it did to me. For me, I felt sunk into a deep depression. I was scared to go off, but we decided to quit and try condoms. We used condoms for 3 years (occasionally "forgetting") :) and didn't get pregnant. This whole time, we were working in full time youth ministry, and had many precious months of late night ministry, crazy adventures with kids, all sorts of things I'm not sure we could have done as fully with our own children. (Not that the ministry of the church is above that of the family - it is simply where we were at.) Just last December, I thought I was closer to my period than I was - and SURPRISE! We got pregnant! I am 13 weeks along, and we are excited. We did have some more things we wanted to do just "us", but we absolutely trust that God is in this.

For us, the conviction to stop using condoms just wasn't there. I honestly do believe birth control is an issue where God speaks personally and individually. I think sometimes I have a bad taste in my mouth when it comes to "no birth control" families just because there does, in some circles, seem to be a legalism. You HAVE to have a ton of kids or you aren't walking in God's will. You obviously have not presented your side like that.

Bottom line which I think most of us agree on: Seek God. Trust Him. In all things He is good.

Jen said...

I appreciate your view. I have no issues with birth control pills and used them for many years with few issues. (Many women use them without any problems or the horror stories noted above.) We have four beautiful children who were carefully planned and desperately wanted. My husband has had a vasectomy and we have no regrets about that. I KNOW beyond a shadow of a doubt that our quiver is full. I do not feel like I "aborted my babies' by taking the BC pill nor do I feel like I am "missing out on the blessing of children". Saying that seems to indicate that the four children God did give me are NOT blessings? Hmmm???

I do not have any issues with those people who choose not to use birth control. I feel the same way toward them that I feel about those who choose to homeschool. We each have to choose what is right for our own families. Choosing differently than another person does not make me a sinner. That's my issue with the whole "family planning debate": believing that the way God leads us is the ONLY way or the RIGHT way for everyone. I don't try to convince everyone to USE birth control or to send their children to public school or to allow their children to go to Sunday School instead of sit in church with them or whatever the debate du jour may be. I always find it a bit amusing, and perhaps hypocritical, that people who don't want to be judged for their own family planning (or other "gray area" choices), feel quite comfortable judging (and often condemning) the family planning choices of others. Doesn't make much sense to me.

I am thrilled for you to expand your family and follow where you feel God is leading you. I hope others do not feel guilty or condemned because they may be led differently. All the best to you!

Anonymous said...

Wise_Woman, I am not trying to be critical, but I just wanted to point out that a child cannot be born with a "very mild case of Down's". Down syndrome is a chromosomal issue, it is caused when someone is born with an extra full or partial copy of their 21st chromosome, the child either has it or they don't. Some children with Down syndrome are higher functioning than others. It's wonderful that your friend's son is greatly loved!

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

One of your commenters posted about using Natural Family Planning (aka Creighton method). Actually, the two are different! NFP revolves around counting days and taking our bodily temp first thing in the morning (which can be inaccurate for those of us who work night shift, wake up with kids in the middle of the night, etc.), while the Creighton method has you do a very specific "mucus check" (it sounds gross but it works- to get pregnant and to avoid getting pregnant) to determine exactly when you ovulate.
The Creighton method, in my opinion, is more scientific.

I am interested to see what you, Mandy, or anyone else thinks regarding condom use.
Thanks so much for this excellent post!!

Anonymous said...

My comments keep getting deleted because I have made the assertion that the Bible is essentially silent on the topics of birth control and even abortion. A line on this blog recommends commenters to be respectful and kind (which I have been) and that any unkindness (which I have not in the least displayed) will be deleted, I can only conclude that my comments (three of them so far) are being deleted simply because you disagree with me. Why close your ears to dissenting viewpoints, rather than engage them and include their voice in the discussion? How can we expect to have a productive discussion and approach the truth of the matter when one half of the dialogue is always being muted?

Anonymous said...

How do you think the Bible is silent about abortion? God states that He knows humans from when they're in the womb implying that life begins at conception. And the Bible states that killing people is wrong. That would include ALL people, including those alive in the womb. So how is this "silent" about the issue of abortion? And if birth control can kill babies before birth, then this is also abortion.

Jennifer said...

We just had our 2nd child. We would love to have more, but due to inadequate health insurance and complications related to my own health issues, we had to pay CASH for him. Even with prompt-pay "discounts" our medical bills topped $16000.00 this year. We can totally afford to raise our children and could afford to *raise* more. We just can't afford to *have* more.

Anonymous said...

For the commenter saying that the Bible is "essentially silent on the topic of birth control," the Bible doesn't say anything on the topic of electricity, automobiles, or social media use either;)

Mandy said...

Hi friend, I am thankful for your thoughts and your time, but I simply do not feel that this type of discussion is appropriate for this post. I suppose I don't really understand what you hope to gain from your comments about the Bible instructing women to marry their rapists, polygamy, executions for brides, etc. I understand your confusion about those OT verses, but I think you're possibly missing the bigger picture.

God created life for His glory. All of creation speaks of the handiwork of God. People, sinful people, have disregarded God from the beginning, and sought after their own way to please themselves and live for their own purposes. The Old Testament is full of examples of this. I don't know why God has mercy on sinners, except that it brings Him glory. In the same way, when people screw up and sin and commit sins like you speak of above, to some God gave them mercy, and a way out, and some he punished and killed. And today we aren't much different- God gives mercy to whom He chooses. Some will come to understand the truth of the mercy of God, and some will not. But God provided a way for all sinners to come before Him and be pure and Holy, through His son Jesus Christ. By the sacrifice of His son, we sinners {just like those rapists and polygamists you spoke of- we are no different} are made holy and pure because Jesus gave His life for us. All so that we could live to glorify Him.

If you do not believe life begins at conception, that is your choice, of course, sweet friend, and between you and God. If I believe life is created when a sperm and egg join together to make a new cell, how does that change your opinion or negatively affect you? If I believe something to be true based on what I have learned and tell you my story, as have several others, it is what it is to us. We simply want to be careful that we do not destroy what is in our opinion, life. What is to be gained by discussing what we obviously do not agree upon in any way? In my experience, I have never seen a person won over to the other side by an internet forum discussion. :)

Do you know a believer you could speak with in real life about this? I think debates between individuals in real life are far more productive and resemble a true dialogue far more than through writing in this medium. :) I encourage you to keep seeking the answers you hope to find by reading the Bible all the way through and speaking with real life friends too. :) much love, Mandy

Ashley said...

It's funny you posted on this today! I have been on birth control for the past 10 years (with the exception of my pregnancies) and I had no idea how much it affected me until recently.

Not only have I been studying God's word on the subject ("children are a blessing from the LORD") but I really began connecting physical/emotional/psychological issues I have been having for years with the hormones I've been putting in my body. I also more recently became aware that I could actually be aborting my babies, rather than simply preventing ovulation.

I had my IUD removed on Tuesday (2/19/13) and I am now suffering the "Mirena Crash" as my hormones try to correct themselves after being exposed to the IUD for 3.5 years.

My husband and I are still praying about Natural Family Planning as an option, or if we should plan at all? It's so hard to know, but I'm praying that the Lord will give us a clear answer soon. :)

Gillian Gauthier said...

Ohhhh ... thank you so much for posting this! I wish more Christians would stand up for the truth in this matter! It is an eye opener for sure. I was always skeptical of the pill and never did actually use it, never really sure why but just that it didn't seem right. Now, 10 years later into our marriage, we are blessed with five beautiful babies and are so grateful. Thank you for writing about this topic!
[And by the way, your family is adorable!!]

God bless!! From a fellow sister in Christ,
Gillian

Anonymous said...

Have you ever thought of natural family planning? It's a method where the woman needs to know her body and it's functions really well, but once you do, its pearl index is as high as the bc pills without the side effects. And during the fertile days you can still use a condom, so the chances of getting pregnant with this method are really slim.
I think you and your family are just too sweet, but I myself don't want to end up with 10 children - apart from the fact that we could never ever afford that.

Best wishes,
Kendra

Anonymous said...

I haven't had a chance to read all of these comments yet, but I just wanted to say that adoption is also a beautiful gift. We have one biological son which was a total miracle. I've had several miscarriages and found out that I have a clotting disorder. The doctors said that I could give myself blood thinners/medication while pregnant and have another baby, but we were already feeling the tug to adopt so we chose not to do that. That was several years ago and now we have 3 boys adopted from China. There is such a huge need both in the United States and Internationally for families to adopt. There are millions and millions of orphans waiting for someone to love them. I've seen them and my heart breaks that I can't take them all. Adoption is such a sweet blessing so I pray that people reading this will pray about the possiblity of adoption.

Rebecca said...

Hi There!

I have been reluctant to jump into this discussion because it has been so heated, and because who could possibly read over 100 comments? :o) Hot topic, indeed. I did read - and enjoy - a comment by a poster who said we should not be so quick to judge each other.

I have two children. I had serious unforeseen complications during delivery and it could be very dangerous for me to get pregnant again. (I personally am not big on the idea of home births because had I not been in the hospital, my son and I could have quite possibly died. We were okay because we were in the hospital with immediate care. I was young, healthy, and had a very normal pregnancy.) Anyhow - I do not like the thought of the pill. My OBGYN had me almost talked into an IUD - until I asked him to explain how it worked. Not to make anyone feel guilty, but my doc said it "creates a hostile environment and does not allow the egg to implant itself." YIKES! Since I, too, feel life begins at conception - this was not an option for me.

Therefore, we use condoms. I don't like them so much, but I don't feel led to get pregnant again. In fact, I feel led just the opposite. Now, I do believe if the Lord really has more children in mind for us, then we will get pregnant. God is certainly more powerful than a condom.

A couple folks have said it's wrong to use the argument God is more powerful than birth control. I disagree.

I do have unprotected sex when I feel it is very safe (nowhere near my fertile time). This is tricky for me as my cycle can be anywhere from 28 to as long as 50 days. I do however, find the discussion on natural family planning interesting and I would like to look into it further.

This has been an interesting discussion, and I pray God has used it in some way to help someone - or multiple someones. I have learned a lot and I am amazed to see so many different points of view among so many Christian women. Very interesting, indeed.

God Bless all of your families, no matter what the size!

Mandy said...

Thank you for sharing, Kellie!! I think I've been on a very similar road to you- {especially in regards to a bus fear!} :) I love hearing how God works in your life- and I think he gives lots of families similar feelings which is so encouraging! He is so good and He won't leave us! I love hearing how giving up control is so rewarding for you! It's encouraging to many of us, and it's so true to me this year that God does desire a Godly offspring- :D so exciting to hear your story!

I know so many people have different convictions about children and money and all these things and I think it's good that we are not all the same in every way! No matter what I think we all agree that we are to give all of ourselves to Him, and every area of our life. We can trust Him with all of it!

Mandy said...

Oh congratulations, Sheila!! I know we were surprised to have our babies so quickly too, and much the same as you it was perfect for us, even though we didn't know it or think it would be like that! I love hearing your story!

Mandy said...

I love hearing how you waited for your husband's leading!! that's awesome, and I love hearing how God worked in his heart!! Oh, praying for you!! congratulations on your new baby!! wohooo!! :D

Baked Appel Ink said...

As a christian former foster mom, childless not by choice, hoping to adopt woman, I enjoyed reading this post. The doctors have no explaination for my infertility, and we feel called by God to care for orphans as per James 1:27. We are praying for adoption soon, as foster care and our faith did not match. To the ladies that don't want too many children, I'll take them. God has provided for my hisband and I and we are stepping out in faith that He will continue to do so as we work to live out what He has told us to do. I read your blog each day...may your faith grow in Jesus.

LB said...

In response to your question Heather...one huge difference between using medical contraceptives and things like the rhythm method and condoms is that medical contraceptives can ALLOW contraception to happen and then "kill" the fertilized egg resulting in an abortion. With condoms that is not possible.

I don't think that God asks everyone to have 20 children but I think He does ask us to be open to children and to have hearts towards children. I agree with Mandy when she says that we need to search our hearts on the subject. Are we saying we can't afford more children because we don't want to have to sacrifice our big vacations? Or do we really feel like God is saying that the two children we have is enough (and he might say that to some people). But we need to be very careful....too often our motive is not pure when we limit family size.

Blessings to you lovely ladies!

Jason and Gloria said...

I really enjoyed your post!! I like how you didn't just bark out a flat "thou shalt" and "thou shalt not" but let it up to each individual couple.
I was married at 21 and we did not use the pill. We learned about the fertility times and used protection over those times. No hormones. We waited till we were almost married a year before we started having children. We wanted to just enjoy a 1 yr honeymoon and also work through some baggage from our pasts. After that we had 4 children in 5 yrs & 9 months. Each child brought a deeper and deeper depression. The first child it was just post partum baby blues. The second one was depression - but I treated it naturally with herbs. But by the 3rd one I had 3 children ages 3 and under and I just went under emotionally. The Dr. said it will get worse with each one. It did. I was on medication for 9 months before I pulled out of it. With our last child the depression hit as soon as I got pregnant. So for 18 months I was on meds. It was bearable but I wasn't the kind of mama I wanted to be.
We knew then that this would have to be the end of our child bearing. That was HARD decision!!!! I still have times when I wish for another baby - our baby is 7 yrs old now.

When our youngest was about 4 or 5 I was diagnosed with adenomyosis (google it) and in severe pain. The Dr said that there are 2 ways to treat it - either a hysterectomy or else a birth control pill. We can't afford the hysterectomy (my husband and I are involved in ministry). So I am on the progestrone only pill. I pray over and over that God will protect us from that 3rd option of aborting a fertilized egg. We pray that if I there is a fertilized egg that He will protect it from being aborted. God knows our predicament. He knows we'd love to have another baby, but He knows our limitations too.

I think God expects us to use our heads. I don't think he expects us to just have babies and have babies and never use any form of birth control - He gave us minds to figure out when we have our cycles and how to protect from getting pregnant. He wants us to be able to love and care for the ones that we do have and to be able to teach them and lead them. God wants us to LOVE children. That is what I love about your post - He changed your heart from selfishness to a love for little ones.
Good job on the article. And browsing through the comments in so encouraging as I read so many stories of how God has worked in peoples lives -- much more encouraging than reading the paper these days! :)

Stacey said...

I admit that I struggle like crazy with this whole topic. I'm 100% against hormonal birth control. I was on it for about a year, and that was too long, in my opinion. This summer my husband and I will celebrate our 10th anniversary. Next month I will give birth to our 4th child (5th pregnancy). This baby was a complete surprise, and I believe it to be a gift from God. Saying that, I have struggled immensely with accepting it! I was so happy with three kids. I was finally starting to feel like myself again, and not some crazy hormonal, depressed Mom. I am not nice when I'm pregnant and have babies. I really didn't want to go down this path again. But at the same time, I struggle with the idea of permanent birth control (tubal or vasectomy). I honestly don't think I can emotionally handle another pregnancy/newborn stage, and I'm terrified of the next few months too. My kids deserve so much more than I can give them!

I have to say too, that worrying about getting pregnant has ruined our sex life. Maybe TMI for some, but it's true. Is it so wrong of me to hope that my husband will get a vasectomy so that we can enjoy each other again? I feel no peace in this situation, in either direction. I'm just tired and freaked out. I also have horrible varicose veins which make daily tasks painful. Do you really think God wants me to keep popping out babies (because I seem to be incredibly fertile) til I hit menopause? I don't know the answer. I have been attempting the Fertility Awareness Method for the last 9 years or so, and we have had two "surprise" pregnancies. One that I miscarried, and the one that I am currently expecting.

Anonymous said...

Gloria, my understanding is that the progesterone-only pills can allow ovulation more often then the combination BCP. Although some of the newer ones might be better at it. It might be something to check with your particular pill. Is there any way your church or family could help with the hysterectomy expense since it's a medical necessity?

Anonymous said...

^^I know you want to honor God and I hope He meets your needs. Hope my comment about the progesterone only pill isn't offensive, only you can decide what's right between you and the Lord.

Jessica said...

Please do some health research on this. If low hemo is causing your wonky cycle, then wrecking your hormone balance is not going to help. There is a ton of help to be had for low irons and a tons of help to be had for cycles and hormones.
If you have questions, I would love to chat!
virginiadanw@hotmail.com

Kristy K said...

Stacey,
I didn't read all of the comments... yours is the first one I saw and I want to reply. I was in the same boat as you. We've lost two babies due to my incompetent (weak) cervix, and I have three living children. Each of my pregnancies requires extra procedures and lots of bedrest - at least six months of pelvic rest, including no sex, no lifting more than a gallon of milk, no exercise, etc...

We used the FAM method for years, and had one surprise pregnancy - my youngest. We live out of town from family, so I was on bedrest, plus I had two other small children at home. After that, we decided to take permanent measures and my husband had a vasectomy. Hormonal birth control wasn't an option, due to many of the reasons Mandy mentioned.

Me being pregnant was extremely hard on our family (and six months without sex each time was hard on our marriage). With three children now, I can't be out of commission for half a year. After our last baby, I found myself avoiding sex because I didn't want to risk getting pregnant again. After a lot of prayer, we felt God was giving us the go for the vasectomy and honestly, we've never looked back. We're looking into fostering/adopting now... we'd still like to grow our family, just not through pregnancy.

I just wanted to share my story with you.

Anonymous said...

I think adoption and fostering is vital. There are many, many kids out there waiting for loving and happy families. As I look at the world, and see so many children born into poverty, it makes little sense to assume that God will give the means to support any children He gives. In reality, this isnt the case in much of the world.

I am an adoptive mom. My two kids were adopted as older children. A challenge? YES! Would I have changed anything? Never. I have 4 grandkids now, who are the loves of my life!

Birth control has to be a personal decision that a couple prayerfully needs to make. We also need to take into consideration the aspects of finances, health, mental health, the condition of the marriage ( such as abuse, career, stresses and strains, health of each partner ), the skills of the parents to parent, and every need of every child already present in the family.

I believe that kids are a blessing, and also is common sense. We are all given a variety of challenges, talents, roles, and options in our time here. Its up to use to use them wisely, thoughtfully and prayerfully.

Anonymous said...

My husband and I chose a vasectomy. Like Kristy, I also have incompetent cervix and have lost 3 little boys. We have 2 miracle babies, one of which was born at 29 weeks and that was after I had surgery to close my cervix, 12 weeks of bedrest, the last 6 weeks were spent in the hospital, and meds every 6 hours ect. So pregnancy for me was constant fear of losing another child. We are so thankful that God brought us through those long years of sorrow and uncertainty and the end result is a beautiful daughter and handsome little boy. I honestly do not have any regrets about chosing the vasectomy.

Mandy said...

sweet stacey! I'm so sorry that it has been so hard for you. I know everyone's situation is not the same and I tried to convey that as well as possible. I really and truly feel that if you ask God for direction with an open heart and willing to do what He wants and he leads you and your husband to make a decision like that either way, that He would make it clear and give you peace about it. I know that we have talked about those very things after we had a very difficult baby and two years of exhaustion with lots of little ones, and that we never could feel peace about making permanent changes, and God later led us both to have more children, with excitement instead of fear. But that's just us. Your story might be different! :D I understand your fears and the hormones too- I've been through that just recently! I just want to encourage you to seek God's will and set your mind on who He is when you are feeling fearful about the future. Your God can help you, sweet girl. He will when you ask!! I know I can't think about the future right now- it's one baby that's next this summer, and thinking ahead right now isn't helpful for me- it's completely overwhelming to consider 6 or 7 children at the moment. :) I have to just take it one day, one baby at a time. I really don't know if this might be our last, you know? I have no idea. I don't know what the next year holds, but I know who does. :D I'm praying for you tonight!!

Seaweed and Raine said...

When we first got married I decided to use an implant (Under the skin on my arm) that had to be renewed every few years. We had always said that we'd wait 5 years before having kids because we wanted to get to know each other really well before adding kids to the mix (we met when we were 16, but didn't marry till we were 24). After our first baby, I tried the mini pill, but a couple of months into it I just didn't feel right. That was 5 years ago. Throwing them in the bin was one of the best decisions for us. It affected my moods, my body, and my family. From that point on I just figgured when I was fertile, and we used raincoats (aka condoms) during those times. We have 3 beautiful children now. God has blessed us with each one's arrival. Some we planned down to the letter, others were gifts from Him. But each time, the timing was perfect. His ways are perfect.
Blessings as you have knitted together another miracle. A grace grower (as one of my friends likes to call her children).
Sheree

Blooming Life said...

Well I have to say I've been
Talking this over with my husband quite a bit. I am 5 weeks away from my 5th baby. We've been married 6 1/2 years and I've had 6 pregnancies. And soon my 5th daughter. We have always been totally no birth control and given our family size to God. My dearest friend has 11, #12 is on the way and I learned a lot from her. I pretty much have said I won't do a thing that will alter by body in anywys. Hormones, tubes, pills, IUD etc. however as Christian woman we are also called to
Honor our husbands. It doesn't mean only perfect Godly husbands either. This is something I'm considering as my husband has said we need to be wise as well and for us it is not wise to have another baby next year. (I've had one every year. My oldest is 5 1/2 the day my 5th baby is due.) my husband has been unemployed for 14 months and just got a low paying temp job finally. This is the point where financially we can't afford the baby I'm about to have. We've had to have help etc and what a blessing it's been but also.... Is it wise or has God also given me a smart mind and free will
To make a choice? The natural family planning method has... Well.... failed me twice :) or God allowed something I wasnt expecting.
I'm greatful for your post and have talked to many Christian friends. Some
Have tied tubes and many use Condoms. The rest don't do anything or track ovulation.

Anonymous said...

When someone ask if I'm done having children (I have 3), I simply say that I'm neither trying nor preventing. My history: married one month on birth control, I get pregnant.(nurses wouldn't believe me that I had used the pill. "It's 99.99% effective and that's statistically impossible." Guess God chose for me to be the .01%) Less than 5mo after his birth using barrier methods, I get pregnant again. After that with no birth control, it was 4yrs before my last child was born. Over 4 yrs later no birth control and no additional chldren. My grandmother NEVER used birth control and had only 3 children. I think if you conviction is not to use birth control methods, then you trust God to give you the size family He deems best. Even if it's not what you think you want or can handle trust his sovereignty. Not using birth control doesn't automatically mean a ton of children. Consider your real heart reason for wanting your family limited. If it's a belief of being a good steward, than trust God to give you the wisdom of how and when. I feel you on the body thing. (just a thought with Mirena: a friend of mine ended up pregnant while she had it in, but the hormones caused her to miscarry) Just really starting to feel like I'm getting back in shape and a little glad when each month proves no set backs to the process. However, one look at the little ones in the other room, and I realize the blessings would out way the "set back." My experience has taught me that b.c. or not, children are truly in God's hands and ultimately we can't totally make or prevent pregnancy.

Rochelle said...

I became aware of the way the birth control pill prevents implantation soon after my second child was born. I was appalled and took this information to my husband who was not at all concerned about it and did not want me to stop taking the pill....what then??? I struggle with it but I feel that if God wanted me to go off the pill he would also convict my husband...is that a reasonable expectation?? I do not presume to know the thoughts of God but I definitely would not go off the pill without my husband's knowledge but at 34 I am looking at many more years on the pill. I do not like putting hormones into my body and would love to stop taking it but I do not feel okay doing anything permanent. It is definitely a conflicting subject.

Maya said...

I took the pill for four years before chucking the pill packet ceremoniously in the bin when we decided to 'start trying' for a baby. We are christians, but no-one ever explained what the pill actually was. I was horrified when I found out!

I've never taken the pill again and we have five children under 7 years old. My husband went for an appt about a vasectomy when our fourth (and second non-sleeping child) was young and we found we just had no peace about it. I prayed SO hard all the time because I knew God was asking us to have another baby, but I was so exhausted! I felt that it was unfair of Him to ask me to have another baby, officially tipping us into the 'freakily big family' bracket!

Well, we did concieve our fifth baby, purely by accident. And she is a dream. God was so faithful. I had no morning sickness (I usually get a mild-moderate dose), I got my long-desired water birth (never been able to have one before) and she is the second settled, happy and content baby I've had - my eldest was a remarkably settled baby, too.

I understand when people like the dear women with so many hard issues decide not to have any more children but in my case, when people ask me (frequently!!), "Are you going to have any more?", I just have to say, "I don't know." because I have no excuse not to have any more babies, apart from my own selfish desires to be comfortable :).

With all the poverty in the world, we need godly children to rise up and lift the burdens of the world. Less babies is not the answer to poverty - it's the opposite. Have more babies who will one day lift the burdens of those around them!

This was a great post and this topic was very sensitively discussed. Thanks very much :)

JoyBelle said...

I love the Creighton Model!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for this post. I follow (via blogs, not as a stalker!) Large families. They fascinate me. Some dissapoint me, because they say they are "allowing God to bless " them with the family size he desires. Yet, they intentionally stop breastfeeding after a few short months in order to get pregnant. That is not relying on God 's timing, they have their own agenda. I've never been on birth control, but after my 3rd baby, I asked the OB who was releasing me if she could prescribe the low dose one. God intervened in my decision ; the OB was a follower of Christ and felt she needed to tell me about the fact unknown to most...that the pill causes a hostile environment and can cause miscarriage. So glad my actual doctor wasn't the one releasing me. But, about God's will...what if my husband and I are on different pages? He's never talked about anything permanent, but says he's done. I realize we are supposed to submit to our husbands in this decision, but I di not like his form of "birth control " so I just try to go to bed early most of the time. TMI: withdrawal is his BC.

Anonymous said...

Very interesting and informative post. Have been convicted and praying about a vasectomy reversal for us. they are very expensive. Is there anyone with success with a reversal that has any insights on places that are reputable but may not be quite so expensive?? Trusting the Lord.

aliciainwonderlandblog.com said...

Thank you for sharing! While my story is not about contraception, it does deal with the journey that my husband and I recently experienced on the path to becoming parents naturally. I have been diagnosed with multiple causes of infertility, and even if I had been a good candidate for any kind of medical procedure or fertility medicine to help us get pregnant, we did not feel right about taking drastic measures like IVF, etc. We had faith that the Lord would help us become parents naturally. I am happy to say that despite a long, difficult journey, and a very complicated pregnancy, my husband and I are expecting our healthy, full term miracle baby any day now! My whole story is posted on my blog: http://aliciainwonderlandblog.com/2013/02/27/my-pregnancy-journey/

Anonymous said...

Early on in our marriage my husband and I were both very much convicted that we should come off the pill - I was on out of ignorance also - and it was what every 'responsible' person did. But one night during my husbands devotions the Lord spoke very clearly through His word and that night we stopped taking them (I did - lol). However I am now 43 I will not kid you that I fear getting pregnant now (we have been married 19 years and have not had children) I do fear that the Lord will pull a 'Sarah & Abraham' on us lol I can't let fear of my age etc control me and for the most part it doesn't but I' just being honest in saying I would find it hard after 19 years .... Thankful for the link from Pinterest I never knew there were others who felt strongly about not taking the pill. Thanks for posting :)

Mandy said...

Hi friend! What a blessing to meet that doctor! Very coo! I know that my husband and I have been on different pages for a time, and I felt God wanted me to listen to what he said and do it, but I have been able to tell him what I would like and not like, and my husband considered those things in his decisions. I don't know if that makes sense, but I've told my husband before that I was really convicted about something he didn't agree with, and he listened to my request and later on we both agreed. I think it was God's provision for us in submitting to Him- He changed our hearts to both agree when we sought His will. So my advice would be to pray about it, seek god's will, and tell your husband your requests, and let him decide knowing your heart about the matter, with prayer, and trust that God will lead you through what your husband decides, because you are honoring his decisions as your head. I hope that helps! It's so hard to talk about, I know!

Crystal said...

I wanted to thank you for your post. About a month ago, we got off the pill because my doctor needed to see me to refill our prescription. Than I read your post. I had no idea the pill did that! My husband and I both agreed to stop using the pill and look for other family planning options. Your post was a God send.

Channon said...

Mandy, thank you so much for opening my eyes. After reading this, I immediately felt convicted. I prayed and cried and researched for a week and a half and felt sick to my stomach every day as I took my pill before I gave them up. Thank you for sharing this information. I will be sharing with others too!

Tina said...

Stacey, I wanted to echo Kristy. I have one 3 year old biological son who is a miracle baby. He was born extremely premature, and he and I almost lost our lives. My husband and I prayerfully considered our options regarding more biological children, and even met with doctors. They told us our percentages are extremely high for the same thing happening again. I also was not enjoying sex because it was so risky in my mind. Losing my life in the name of having more biological children was not something we felt God would have us do. We decided that to be good stewards of my body and my responsibilities as a wife and mother that we would take permanent measures to prevent pregnancy. This was a loss. We grieved and are still grieving this loss. But, it something we were certain was what God would have us do.

We have always wanted to adopt, and felt that this was God's way of telling us that we needed to pursue that avenue to grow our family sooner rather than later (as was "our plan"). We are now foster parents, hoping to adopt more children as our own. I just want to say that, like Mandy said above, everyone is different. There is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. (Romans 8:1) I truly believe that the Bible does not speak directly to never disallowing us to have biological children. We do however need to be prayerful and God-seeking in each and every one of our decisions. Praying for you and those in similar situations!

Victoria Wilson said...

Thank you for such a honest post! I'm newly married (just a few months in!) and my husband and I carefully considered our stance on birth control. Is it *ever* permissible to control birth? If so, how? We, like you, found The Village Church article helpful among others (like this one from Dr. Al Mohler http://www.albertmohler.com/2006/05/08/can-christians-use-birth-control/).

I love that quote you gave, that in the absence of biblical conviction people go the way of culture. I'm sad to say we live in a culture that values convenience more than children. Though I do think God allows us certain freedoms in this issue (as you said!) we are never free to begrudge the Lord's gift of.

Praise God for your testimony! How the Lord worked in your family's life to root out selfishness, which ultimately conforms us to the image of Christ.

You're such an encouragement :)

Jamie said...

I love that I am able to share some of what I've learned about this topic after spending years studying it. My husband & I got married and started having babies right away. We ended up having 4 precious, little boys all of them just under 2 years apart. So at one point we had 4 boys ages 5 (almost 6) and under. We decided that I should get my tubes tied during my 4th c-section because of the risks of multiple cesareans. We had prayed, sought counsel, and read God's Word before making that decision. We never really got an answer but looking back I do believe that I allowed fear to come into play during the decision process. Fear of dying during another c-section and leaving my 4 boys orphaned. While still in the hospital after giving birth to my 4th son, I regretted having my tubes tied. To make a long story short, 2 1/2 years later I had a reversal. We had 2 ectopic pregnancies and a chemical pregnancy after the reversal. I have read every book out there about letting God plan your family, birth control, etc...... If we could go back, we would have not had my tubes tied and practiced natural family planning.

With that said, I believe that where the Bible is silent, we are given freedom to make choices. I do believe that hormonal birth control is wrong, but I do not believe it is wrong for a husband & wife to limit the amount of children that they have. It truly is a heart issue. I agree with John Piper; children are awesome gifts from God, but God blesses us with many other gifts as well. I know of many families who have chosen to have as many children as the Lord sees fit to give them and their families are experiencing difficulty. Some of the families have neglected the husband/wife relationship. Others have neglected their children. I also know of many women who find their identity in having children instead of finding their identity in Christ. I think there is a fine line for us women in regards to finding our identity in having babies.

Some more thoughts on what I've learned.... It's not about how many children a couple has, it's all about Christ. Everything that a person adds in their life, takes away from something else. I know of an older couple who chose to "let God plan their family". They had nine children. The husband is a Pastor at a church and he now counsels families to make sure that they are able to give their children everything they need (not financially) emotionally, mentally, spiritually because he and his wife feel that they missed the mark with some of their younger children. Our relationship with the Lord must come first, then our relationship with our spouse, then our children. I do believe that the more a couple becomes like Christ the more they will desire children. But there is no law in the Bible saying that a couple must have as many children as naturally possible.

God used my regret over having my tubes tied to teach me so much, and I'm so very thankful. We are now pouring into our marriage, pouring into our 4 boys and hoping to do foster care in the future if the Lord allows.

In regards to adoption, we almost adopted a baby boy a couple of years ago. Adoption is not the same as adding a child to your family as a result of the marriage bed. Christians need to very prayerfully consider adoption. I believe that adoption can be such a beautiful picture of redemption if it is done in the right way. I do not believe in all of these open adoptions. But that's a whole other topic. :-)

Jennifer said...

I saw this article linked from the tv/entertainment article, both are so encouraging that God truly cares about our daily lives! Thank you so much for sharing God's truth in such a loving way that makes me want to be closer to Him & honor Him more!

mmiezite said...

Thanks for the article, love when this subject is brought up. My story is similar, we vere christians and used the pill for 4 years (!) untill came across info what you mentioned and stopped. Just s quick link to the US natural family planning website. As someone mentioned, its not another contraceptive, because through educating it changes our mindset. We have been NFP for almost 2 years now, and now expecting a baby this month (after being married 7 years). We turned to NFP after having a miscarriage, and wanted a healthy pregnancy. NFP is great for couples with fertility problems.

MJ said...

Thank you for this post! I had a wonderful biology prof in college that explained what hormonal bc could do. I have never taken hormonal bc and my husband and I were pregnant 9 months after we got married. Two and a half years later after the stillbirth of our daughter at 28 weeks we learned I have a genetic blood clotting disorder that can be intensified with the hormones in bc and my doc said it was a blessing I never took it. One year later we experienced another stillbirth because our son developed a heart condition in the womb. After a lot of prayer we felt God was leading us to adoption. We now have a beautiful baby girl brought to us by miracle after miracle through the amazing journey of adoption. We are taking non hormobal measures as bc and we will be pursuing adoption again :)

Kelli H. said...

What a great post! I was on the pill when I got pregnant with our first, had a neuva ring when I got pregnant with our second... then i got an iud, after a year of torture i got it removed. It took us 8 months to get pregnant with our 3rd and 5 months after she was born we found out we were expecting our 4th. So here we are with #4 on the way and we have no plans on going back to hormonal BC. The only problem is that our hearts are not on the same page about our future and children. He would like to get a vasectomy because we would still like to adopt in the future, but I feel like I would regret closing that door forever. My heart so longs to honor my husband and he ALWAYS consults me in the choices he makes. I have spent many nights just praying for God to give us peace one way or another. I know God will answer our prayers as long as we are faithful to listen.

I know people who have left their family plan up to God and He has closed the door for them when He was ready. Whatever He has in store, I am truly more and more blessed by my children everyday!

Sara said...

Thank you for this! My husband and I have 4 kiddos, our 3 and his from a previous marriage, and he decided that he would get a vasectomy. This was not something we agreed on, he felt that we couldn't afford anymore kids and it was just the 'smart' thing to do. After having our three girls, I still don't feel done, even though our youngest is just 15wks. I just feel like I'm supposed to have more. He got it done about two weeks ago and his doctor told him he had about two to three weeks of good swimmers left after the procedure. I have done more talking than I can think of to express my sadness to him so he said we can use these last few days to see if it's 'meant to be'. I have always told him that if God wanted us to have more kids he would bless us to support them. All I can do is pray that God blesses us with another baby, even after the vasectomy.

Vanessa Weltmer said...

Wow. I am in complete agreeance with your convictions the Holy Spirit has brought to your heart. I too was married young (at 19) to my high school sweet heart of five years. I had to laugh at your acronym of DINKS. That was also my husband and I. He went to pharmacy school and I was in nursing school and running track and XC to help pay for college so definitely children were not on the radar yet; in fact we viewed taking BC then as the "responsible thing" to do. It makes my stomach churn to think back to my view. We loved God and were striving to follow Him but I know I was completely deceived in that season of our life with that issue. Praise God for His grace and unfailing love and compassions that are new every morning! Sorry I'm really desperately pathetic at telling a short story. But after we graduated and were able to move back home at the completion of my schooling it finally seemed like all was in place for God to lead us to take the next step of beginning a family. We were pregnant within 2 months and extremely excited, however God had different plans and timing for us and we found out we had lost our baby at 18 weeks. I was devastated but losing our child led to me to a new level of honesty with Jesus I had never known. My oldest sister led to me to a verse in 1 Peter 1:6-9 that was my absolute life line during that time and there is much more I could describe at the ways God showed up for us and provided healing and actually brought my husband and I closer. Well after our doctor cleared us to begin trying again I continued to have irregular bleeding/cycles and was led by sisters to seek out a specialist who tested levels of hormones. After much prayer I made an appointment and without a doubt know God led me there at that specific time on purpose. I found out I had basically no progesterone in my body and for some reason my body was failing to make the amounts needed to sustain a pregnancy. I was instructed to begin taking progesterone along with testosterone 6 days into my next cycle to gradually bring my level of progesterone up. Well God had other plans. So I was finally wanting to have a period and it wasn’t happening. My husband encouraged me to take a pregnancy test that I of course was certain was not needed. I actually found out that Tessa was coming the morning of my 25th birthday. God blew my socks clean off. I found out that day I was already six weeks along. He had given us a baby without medical intervention. Well there is much more to this story but again I am painfully awful at being concise. But I mainly wanted to share that taking BC did influence my hormone levels in a negative way and I am praising God for the knowledge He has revealed to my husband and I and the gift of Tessa He has given us. We serve an awesome wonderful merciful God and your heart truly radiates Jesus and following Him in the midst of a culture indoctrinated with counterfeit gods. Thank you for being faithful to the call He has placed on you and sharing His Word and making disciples in your own sphere of influence! God bless you and your growing family my sister.

Simply Alexandra said...

I loved this article. I am 22 and my husband and I little over a year ago. At first we chose the pill, just like many above. But I decided that for many reasons a non-hormonal IUD would be a great solution. I didn't have to worry about hormones disrupting my body or it's natural processes. The procedure was painful, but ultimately worth it. My insurance covered nearly all of it, so it was perfect. I was so happy that I wasn't harming my body, the environment or any potential life. Sadly, three months after insertion the IUD fell out. I was so upset. There wasn't any way to put it back in. The told me that this only happens after the first month to 5% of people who get it put in. I am feeling pretty disheartened because I don't really want to put a new one in, and am not comfortable going back on the pill. So I feel like I'm in limbo. Maybe I should check out this book, and add the issue to my prayers. It is such a huge area of our lives, it's very overwhelming being only 22. Thanks again for the article, and let me know if you have any insight! :) - Alexandra www.simplyalexandramyfavoritethings.blogspot.com

Allison said...

Very interesting topic for me also. I have 6 children, never used any bc until between #5 & #6, barrier method. My husband suffers with depression, has been off and on a million different treatments over the past 6 years. Sometimes the treatments work for awhile, then for some reason, we need to switch to something else. So we have had a lot of difficult times, though he has some better stretches too. The depression always seems to be there on some level, and you just never know from day to day or month to month what will transpire. I have a very big job being his main support person. Anyone who has been in my type of a position knows what I am talking about. It can be very hard. Also, we have the kids. So, we are using a barrier method again after #6. In spite of everything, I still struggle with the issue of "Is it right for us to try take the matter of the creation of a person into our control? Are we not trusting God enough that He will carry us through the depression and who knows how many babies?" Some people may think I'm crazy for even thinking like this, but we have grown up in a non bc culture, and how we are raised does have a huge affect on us. I do have some worries about what others around us will think, but mostly, I worry what God thinks. I do not want to displease him in this matter. I realize that my husband is not healthy. It's hard for him to handle much, let alone a baby every 18 months. I guess what I'm saying is that I do struggle with this issue, but I also know I need to see my husbands illness for what it is and the stress it puts on our family. We have a good marriage, despite his depression. He does not struggle with this issue like I do. He knows he's not 100% well and feels fine with bc because of that. Is there anyone with similar situations? Any thoughts or encouragement for me?

Julia Townsend said...

Hi,
First off I need to thank you for sharing about this very controversial topic and for sharing your story. I pray that God continues to bless you and your family for your faithfulness.

I wanted to share my story concerning birth control. I started the pill at 18 because it was solution my doctor gave me for heavy periods. As I got into college, I felt that push to use contraceptives because I have a long road ahead of me achieving my career and becoming an educated women. It's just what women do these days. It made my husband (then boyfriend) excited too. We knew this meant we could delay children until we were "ready". I had been diagnosed with a chronic anxiety disorder a year after using the pill continuously. My periods got better, but my life became a whirlwind of crying, anxiety, and lost sleep as I ventured through my college career. The counselor knew it could have been caused by the pill but why would a college counselor tell a hardworking young college women to stop the pill?

Then, when I was 19, my definition of "ready" began to change. My husband proposed to me that year. Neither of us had very good jobs. We were not prepared to live on our own. We set a wedding date before either of us had secured full time employment. The summer before our wedding, my husband was referred for a full time position and he got the job. God provided.

Somehow, I began to wonder what it really meant to be ready. Still, I believe that although God had provided for us to start our lives together, it would be awhile before we could provide for children. Besides, I need to finish my education and go on to grad school and work a few years. We decided 27 would be a good age to start trying. By then, I believed I would be sure to have a great job and a new car (because I really want one). However, a few months before my husband and my's first anniversary, a friend of mine challenged me to think of birth control in a new way. I did a ton of research and learned how the pill actually works. I also learned it can cause bad anxiety. However, I stayed on it for a few months after this. Right around the time of our anniversary, I told my husband I was feeling convicted about the pill. I wanted to call my doctor and discontinue the hormonal method. When I called, the doctor asked me to come in to discuss my other family planning options. My husband and I went to the visit and were bombarded with tons of other options (all hormonal). So we reluctantly decided to try the Nuvaring. I used it until March, feeling convicted all the way that I had not fully done what God had asked of me by giving up the hormones. We saw no issue in condoms or NFP, so I was not sure why we had not stopped back in December. My husband and I have spent many nights up talking about this issue and we finally determined we were scared to give God more control over that area of our lives. It is a scary thing to think about having sex and possibly getting pregnant. We have never had unprotected sex and it scares us. However, we are praying and asking God to show us what He wants. Recently I have started to do NFP. We also use condoms because my husband really wants to wait until December to start trying for kids. However, he is more open now to using NFP.

I am really ready to have kids. I graduate from college this summer and I want to be a mom. However, I see my husband's argument. He just started a new job and is travelling a lot this month and he does not want to be a dad that travels a lot. I know whenever we do get pregnant, though, that God will provide like he did when we decided to get married. It is just so hard to take a step of faith. We are both trying however to be faithful and follow God's lead.

Reading your story inspired me. You have such strong faith and I hope that you continue to pour into others' lives.

Thanks for sharing!

The Gere's said...

Would your husband be opposed to using a barrier method? After all, the pill is a hormone and is gradually being shown to negatively impact long time users fertility. I personally feel like God designed our bodies to work a certain way and we shouldn't try to fix something that isn't broken. A barrier method could keep your husband secure in that you will not have any unwanted pregnancies while you will be secure in know that you are obeying a conviction before God. My husband was not on board with my going off the pill either but I offered the ultimatum (nopill/no barrier or nopill/barrier) and he gradually came to trust that we could trust the Lord. I hope this might offer some help for your situation.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for writing on this topic. I am a single christian that was not to long ago engaged to a man who held the no birth control whatsoever position. Needless to say we are no longer together because of that and other areas in which we did not agree-but mainly this.

I know I am called to marriage and after that fiasco decided to investigate this issue for myslef.Here's what I came up with. I feel convicted in trying not to limit my family size; I don't care about the number and believe earnestly that the Lord will help my family provide. My grandmother raised 10 children on her own on a house keepers income and they wanted for nothing and never used public assistance. At the time , she was unsaved. How much more will the Lord care for his own?

My issue is spacing. I strongly advocated to my fiancee that I wanted/needed a year between children and after a year of reprieve I did not care. Having children is stressful on the body and small children demand a lot; I'm a preschool teacher ;). I beleive moms and dads need time with each baby that comes along and being pregnant while one has a small baby would be too stressful for me. I struggle with depression and know that major changes (such as a new baby) would be a stressor for me. I anticipate post partum depression to some degree with each child. The Lord gives me grace, but this is a part of who I am; my thorn in the flesh. I earnestly believe I would be a better mom with a little space to adjust. He thought I was being selfish.

Allison said...

My husband also suffers from depression and I take it very seriously. Even though he loves the kids, it is hard for him to raise them while not being healthy himself. I think that having children would be even more of a challenge on a mother, who has to go through all the emotional and physical changes during a pregnancy. Some people just do not understand mental illness, if they or a close loved one hasn't been there. So easy to judge without walking a few miles in someone else's shoes!

Anonymous said...

I respect everyone's personal convictions but resent comments that suggest people who use birth control have a lack of faith or are selfish. Raising children is a mighty work for the Lord, but it is not the only work for the Lord. I believe people need a balanced view of child rearing. Christians should not see children as a burden , but I believe it is also unhealthy to see them as so much of a blessing they consume your life. I believe the scriptures teach us in Ecclesiates that there is a time for every thing. Bearing and raising children is a season in our lives not the whole pie ; after all our children are meant to go on and build their own lives. If a family limits the number of children for the kingdom they have honored God just as a family who does not for the kingdom. A family who has 16 children is no more blessed than a family that has 1.
And what about barren christian couples-are they not blessed? I also have to say I think it is unfair to our men to saythey need to be able to have their wives stay home and then have as many children as the Lord allows. So he is expected to care for us and twelve to fourteen children on his own? No wonder our men are not stepping up to the plate of biblical manhood and marrying. I would stay single as well rather than marry and be under that kind of pressure!

Amanda said...

While I appreciate your story and think your family is beautiful, I've got to say that getting my tubes tied was a day of celebration for my husband and I. For our own reasons, we're a happy family of four (the two of us plus our cat and chinchilla). I'm grateful that my contributions (volunteering with the elderly and those with Alzheimer's, caregiving for both of my grandparents who suffered/suffer from dementia) are valued by my church as being motherly, that they don't expect me to actually be a mother to children (though it's definitely something that's encouraged in my church's culture). I don't think all women are called to mother children but their contributions delight God just as much.

Anonymous said...

The Bible is NOT silent on abortion. The Israelites were directed to COMPLETELY wipe out the people groups in Canaan that engaged in child sacrifice, which is a form of abortion. Similarly, the Bible says that CHILDREN are a heritage of the Lord. This does NOT mean "the children you and your spouse have." It means the children brought into your life. Whether you are a godparent, an aunt/uncle, grandparent, neighbor that is involved, volunteer in your community or church, a foster or adoptive parent or whatever, God brings children in your life to bless you, grow you, show you your sin, help you be closer to Him and learn that He is sovereign. I urge those of you that come across as "anti birth control" to understand that the medical industry does everything it can to not really educate women about birth control and what it can do. I also urge you not to judge other women, but to encourage them to seek God's will. He does speak. I highly disagree with those who believe God can't overcome birth control and that He no longer opens and closes wombs. I think the ONLY mistake that many of us make is to think that WE control our fertility rather than realizing that God is the one in charge.

Anonymous said...

Children are wonderful but the world is overpopulated. The amount of resources needed to sustain a growing population combined with medicine that keeps us alive much longer will cause a downfall for the human race. And as one of eleven, when two parents don't have enough to give to you because they are burnt out because they had far to many children than they can manage, you have to decide if it's practical. Remember that back in the day lots of children would have died in the first few years whereas now that is unlikely. These are the reasons I believe in some sort of birth control.

Rhianon Chavarria said...

I wanted to share our story. My husband I were civilly married young and people started saying things to me like "You need to be on something" so I went and got on the depo shot. It made me super depressed and it just felt weird to not have a period for 2 years straight. Well, after about 2 years into our marriage I was invited to a Catholic Church and decided to give my life to Jesus and started going to RCIA(Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults). I learned that for my husband and I to have our marriage blessed in the church that we had to take these NFP courses. I started learning about the Creighton method and the churchs teaching on contraception( that we are not supposed to use birth control). We started taking the classes and a whole new world opened up for me. I never knew all the amazing things that were going on inside my body every month and I never knew that by using contraception my husband and I were sharing our lives together but we were guarding and keeping the gift of our fertility from one another. After charting my cycles for a few months my NFP counselor saw that I had low progesterone, a common sign of a women having been on the depo shot. We decided to be open to life and we found out we were pregnant soon after. But we had a miscarriage and I was completely devastated. My progesterone dropped very low and I fell into a DEEP depression and no one really understood except my NFP counselor. I continued to chart and saw that my cycles were very short and that my progesterone was very low. I saw first hand what the depo shot had done to my body. But because of the Creighton method and the information it offers through Pope Paul the VI institute we were able to use bioidentical progesterone to help sustain my next pregnancy and 9 months later we had our first-born son! We went on to be blessed with our daughter and another little dear boy all through the grace of God and the gift of having the knowledge of the Creighton method and knowing that we needed progesterone. This is a topic that many people dont realize about NFP methods, that not only can it be used for spacing pregnancies for serious reasons but also it can be a beautiful gift for knowing when there is something that is not quite right. It has had huge success with helping couples who have been unable to conceive as well. God blessed our marriage in many ways but He crowned our marriage with the knowledge of the gift of our fertility. Now we can recommit our wedding vows every time we come together intimately by sharing every part of ourselves including our fertility...what a gift! A gift that was hidden from me in the culture growing up. Thanks for your story Mandy and for the chance to share mine!
http://www.creightonmodel.com/
http://www.popepaulvi.com/
May God bless you all with love of Christ

Anonymous said...

I got married in 2011 and my then fiancé and I looked very hard at every birth control option. We prayed a lot and finally felt led to learn more about natural family planning(my DRs thought I was crazy). At the time I'd talked to so many who'd had problems on the pill or IUD's. We found some really great webpages from Christian MD's who talked about specific pills and whether they could cause abortion or not (The one pill we considered a possibility was later taken off the market because of danger to women).
Whatever you decide I agree that the heart and obedience to GOd is crucial! Even under no pills I still have a power over my fertility so I need to stay committed to God and not my own selfish desires-sometimes I think of how wonderful it'd be to be just me and my love forever. Another huge issue though, is that we need to invest in our marriages too. For many it may not be selfish to have no children for awhile if they are learning how to be married well and working through problems so that they can have a foundation for their children(especially with so many marriages breaking apart). Again though, trust and obedience to God comes first. Proverbs 3:5-6 btw...I'm almost 6 wks pregnant :) and was aware within the first week with the natural family planning.

The Lawrences said...

I love your perspective on birth control. My husband and I have 4 children all under the age of 8, and our families think we are crazy for trusting God with each child and no birth control. I got pregnant with our first 3 months after we were married and I was on the pill. That seemed to clarify that God ultimately is in control even though I was on the pill. I have had one miscarriage which was a DNC but 4 beautiful births who are now the ages of 8, 5, 3 & 20 months and we actually are open to having more. Despite the fact that our families and friends think we are crazy and not very supportive. Every time we've shared to our family of another birth they shutter and treat us as if we just told them we were aborting our babies. Yes, it's been hard to have to deal with that on both sides of the family, although they cherish and adore their grandchildren, it's still hard. My husband is self employed and I stay home and homeschool these gifts. Another reason everyone thinks we are crazy. I am going to be 38 so I'm no young chicken, but if God wants to give us more, then bring it on. After all, who doesn't want more increase from the Hands of Almighty Father! Thank you again for sharing your story. It blessed me so much. I wish I was as committed to staying fit like you though. ha! You are just gorgeous. What a beautiful family and an inspiration you to so many. Thank you! God bless you today! Jodi Lawrence

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the encouragement!

Holly said...

I just wanted to send a quick comment your way to say thank you so much for sharing this. God used your story to convict my husband and I about the truth of birth control pills. I will be forever thankful for that. It is shocking and embarrassing to discover that I was taking something that I assumed I knew about, but really didn't. All those years, I just thought they stopped ovulation, and I didn't have any idea they could possibly do more. God bless you and your family for desiring His will. Thank you for your blog. I am now an avid reader! :)

Anonymous said...

I just read your post and I thought it was wonderful. I too felt the same way after having taken birth control for a while. My husband and I stoppen and ended up pregnant with our first child shortly after. After he was born, I struggled with the issue again and did take birth control on and off. The biggest issue was I was scared to death to get pregnant again. I love my child with all my heart, but for some unknown reason, the thoughts of getting pregnant again were just unbearable. So my husband and I began to pray about my issues and they seemed to only get worse. So we prayed about him just going ahead and being sterilized. It seemed that everything went exactly as we prayed. Everything that we had prayed, happened. So we felt that it would be God's will for us to go through with it. We did. Now our child is six and it's been about a year ago since we made that decision. My husband is fine with the decision, but it seems that I feel we let God down. My heart is so torn over it, I can't get it out of my mind that even though we prayed about it, I still feel like we did something wrong. Could you offer any advice to my heart?

Anonymous said...

The world isn't overpopulated. In fact, we are in a population decline. Check out "What to Expect When No One's Expecting."

Anonymous said...

Rachel, don't loose heart. God is our HEALER. He has you in the palm of His hand and he will not fail you. Don't loose your confidence in Him- Trust Him. Healing ur husbands anatomy is not too big for our God! Psalm 37:4 Delight thyself in the Lord: and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing this! Similar story. My husband and I were married for about a year while I was on the pill. We stopped taking it because of the possibility of abortion, and began using condoms/natural family planning. We got pregnant with my 1st son about 8 months later. Five years later, we have three kids!

I do think we should differentiate between non-abortive methods and abortive methods. We feel okay with using condoms. Two of our three kids were conceived using them, so they aren't THAT preventative. We feel like we would never do anything permanent to prevent pregnancy either. I think there's definitely a grey area where Christians need to navigate. But, culturally, we've so divorced sex from conception, and we've consumerized children...we need to change our mindset about children, family size, etc.

Anonymous said...

Ahhh it was so great to read this today! I can't do birth control because it just makes me crazy!!! I had finally decided that I was just going to stop my birth control to try and level out my hormones and within two weeks I was pregnant! Well that was a shocker. After I had our daughter I went on the mini pill but it made me just as crazy. So now I'm on no birth control. After reading your story I'm glad I'm not, but I'm terrified of having another baby *yet* I want more in the future but our income is not stable enough to add more children right now. However God has provided so far :) I went a total of 20 months (including when I was pregnant) without AF. I just need to get motivated to figure out the Natural Family Planning. But anyways, thank you for making my decision to not use birth control that much more permanent.

Money Family Musings said...

Mandy, thank you for posting this! We are currently pregnant with our 3rd (I was on the mini-pill) at the time, and I am curious to know your thoughts on vasectomies and tubals. We are at a crossroads and trying to decide if a vasectomy is something we might consider. I am definitely not going back on any type of birth control, and I don't want to have a tubal. I'm feeling very conflicted about this though.
Thanks!

Katie said...

I took birth control pills for a short time after getting married as well. I also became convicted, talked to my husband and went off of them.
Before I was married I told my husband that I wanted 7 children. I wanted biological and adopted children. My husband thought to himself that surely after we had a couple I would change my mind.
After our 4th child my husband had scheduled a vascetemy which I agreed to.....but didn't really want. I do not recall what happened but somehow the appointment got missed/skipped/cancelled and I became pregnant with our 5th child. (Hooray!) We were just about to move from California to TX and I remember only telling our closest friends that we were pregnant. After all, with our 4 children we had the most kids out of any couples in our circle of friends. While in TX and waiting for our 5th to be born one of our new friends had a conversation with my husband about having more children. After that talk my husband prayed about the possibility of having even more children and his conclusion was to ask himself this, "Why *wouldn't* I want more children?" Basically he realized how much he loved the children that we already did have and that another one would be a blessing as well. So, we did indeed go on to have our 5th child and then a 6th as well. While I was pregnant with our 6th child my husband brought up the topic of a vasectomy again. A big part of this was how sick I get while pregnant, our financial situation, our small home and simply how much work it is to have little ones. In response to my husband (who is such a good husband and father) I felt that I really should be willing to give up my desire for an even larger family...just as he had been willing to have more children when his desire had been to stop.
I'm glad that you addressed this issue on your blog. I believe that we as Jesus followers really should make the size of our family a matter of prayer and not just decide based on what we think is most comfortable, most cost effective, most wise, ect.

Anonymous said...

I may be one of the very few single people posting here, but am anticipating (hopefully some day!) marriage in the future. I am 34 & this has been a major issue (being single I mean). I've never really thought about birth control all that much, though have known most of my friends to use it. I am going to be totally honest & say I actually don't really want kids, as awful as that may sound for some. I know if I marry anytime soon that it'd be a scary possibility, so do I use birth control or not in future? Also, I have struggled with depression for many years & can only imagine what kids would do to me :/ I realise this is a very different post than the rest! But here I am :)

Amanda said...

Thank you for this. I didn't realize that birth control could cause abortions from changing the uterin lining. I was on the Birth control patch and looked it up and sure enough, it does just that! The pill always messed with my hormones too and the progestin only pill made me really sick. I had stomach pains so bad I would have rather been in labor!!! I'm not sure why but the thought of birth control keeps popping up in my head lately...God speaking to me perhaps??? Anyways...definitely NOT going to be taking this form of birth control anymore. But honestly am still doing research, praying and searching God's word for anything about other forms. It's difficult for me right now as I would truely love to have another (I have one girl and one boy) but because of some family issues we moved in with my parents. We are nearly debt free! (YAY!) But have not found a place within our budget (which we still are not sure what it will be since my husbands job may be changing really soon.). I'm hoping to be moved into our own place within a few months of the new year. If I were to get pregnant before we moved I know my father would be disappointed. He loves his grand kids but doesn't think that we should be having more and even went so far as to tell me to get on the pill when we moved in. Not to mention my kids are already sharing a very small room together and my husbands and my room is extremely small. The living space literally leaves no room for me to even have a co-sleeper next to my bed. :/ I've just been feeling the conviction to not use contraceptives. How do I balance this? What should I do? or what would you do?

Lindy Johnson said...

http://conservativechristianmom.blogspot.com/2013/10/my-testimony.html
I have a very similar testimony above. Thank you so much for sharing your heart! I know it's hard and you will hear much opposition. But I remember how I wish someone had educated me on birth control. NO ONE ever told me how birth control work (granted, I should have educated myself before taking it). I just "assumed " it was okay! Randy Alcorn has a GREAT in-depth study on this for those who are interested and you can find the link through the link above on my testimony page! Thank you so much for talking about saving lives!
Just FYI, I didn't know how else to contact you, but you have an ad below with a video advertisement of League of Angels and it is porn! I just thought you would want to know as I know you wouldn't want to promote that!

Anonymous said...

As a Christian woman who is currently on the pill, I appreciated how I could read this article and not feel judged or condemned. I really appreciate your thoughts on children and trusting God. Having a slightly different story I wanted to just share this with you. My husband and I are totally excited to have kids (none yet) and we do feel that we are open to having a family of as many as God wants us to (my hubby is 1 of 6 and I am 1 of 4 kids so we love big families!). However due to several debilitating illnesses I have been on the pill since I was 14 years old. As a 14-19 yo I never had to even worry about using it as a form of contraception, but when I got married at 19 that obviously then changed. (However I am on a more natural pill which I understand does not use abortion as a form of bc). But my hubby and I often still get judged because I am on the pill. We are not using it as a form of contraception, but as a way for me to live a normal life without pain, so I can go to work, and function normally. My doctors are working on getting me off the pill soon so that my husband and I try to get pregnant! (they are even telling me it is unlikely that we will be able to but we are just trusting God in that too and trying not to worry) But it is my hope that I can stay off of it after having kids. I totally agree about trusting God with kids and our future, but I also believe in trusting the Medical Professionals in my life (some wonderful Christians as well that God has led me to) and some forms of hormone therapy are simply used as a medication just like you'd treat any other illness. There are wonderful people out there who have been so encouraging and supportive of my husband and I as we take each day as it comes and pray for the future, I'd encourage all of you to keep your minds open when it comes to some forms of 'birth control', its not always used as that. :)

Anonymous said...

I have always loved children, my older sister has 3 and I treat them as if they were mine. However I have never had the desire for my own. The number one reason being I had to much I wanted to do (notice the I I I) Yes very selfishly my husband and I both have been worried about #1 and not anything else. The past year my relationship with the Lord has grown so much and I could feel him tugging at my heart on the subject of kids. So I began praying God if it's your will for us to have kids please change my selfish heart.... guess what..he did. My husband and I are on the same page about this and have decided to start trying this year :) I am so excited about this because I completely see through my sister's kids how much of a blessing they truly are.

Gina Codding said...

Also, a few diet changes will help your hormones (Nourishing Traditions) as well as switching feminine products to organic pads or a cup. I noticed a difference in just 2 months after switching to organic tampons (now I use a mens. cup which is even better!).

Gina Codding said...

Also, consider switching feminine products to organic/cloth pads or a mentrual cup. It has helped me a lot. Not to mention diet change such as outlined in Nourishing Traditions :)

Brian Price said...

God has giving us all a sex drive so we will reproduce and not die out, it is kind of like the hunger drive he gave us so we want starve. Like the hunger drive the longer you go with out eating an food , foods that you would not ever eat, start to look good to you, the same is all so with your sex drive, sex acts that you never would think of like homosexuality, or incest, or rape, etc... start to appeal to you. The Bible says that we can fast sexually as well as from food to devote ourself s to the Lord in prayer but only for a time so we wont be tempted by the flesh or satan, and this has to be a joint choice by a husband and wife to go on this sexual fast, not an forced fast by one party on the other, you must never not please your mate or use your body to gain control or black mail them, or punish them, for this is one of your primary martial duty's. For those who are not married the Bible says it is better to marry then to burn with passion, passion is what can get you in trouble, if you are a virgin then most of the time your sex drive is some what dormant, it depends on what your brain has been exposed to in your up bringing. Now about birth control, I believe that the Bible clearly says, who that will be born, are who that will not be born should be left up to God and is not our choice to make it is Gods choice. God has made natural ways of birth control, like when a woman can only get pregnant when she is ovulating, and she cant get pregnant while she is breast feeding her baby.Genesis 30:1-2 Says when Rachel saw that she was not bearing Jacob any children, she became jealous of her sister. So she said to Jacob,"Give me children, or ILL die! Jacob became angry with her and said, "Am I in the place of God,who has kept you from having children?

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for this article! I have been on birth control for almost two years now because of extreme pain during my periods and endometriosis and early menopause as part of my family history. My fiance and I are getting married in a few months and this subject has been a real struggle for me, since birth control pills could cause an abortion. However, I have been dreading getting off birth control because I know how much I will have to deal with. Reading this article has reminded me to trust God, and I think I might try not taking it in the months before our wedding. I am a little worried as to what we will do if I continue to deal with the pain and possibly progressing endometriosis (when I am only 21 =(), when I stop taking it.

Sarah Q said...

Mandy,
Thank you so much for your open mindedness and sincere approach to this topic. All to often it seems to me that people try to push their beliefs on to others, or make them feel lesser because they are not following the same path; however, God gave us all free will, and in that, we have the right to choose how we go about growing (or not growing) our families - and you very beautifully displayed that in this post. I don't feel that I need to go into "my story", but I do want to thank you for your convictions, your love of the Lord and of your husband and family - its so rarely seen in people of our generation (at least in my opinion) for people to have a genuine love for the Lord and to be clearly trying to live a blessed life serving Him, AND so wonderfully loving her husband and children.
What an amazing woman you seem to be. Rob is blessed with an amazing Godly woman to walk through life with; and your children have an incredible role model. I look forward to reading more of your blog -- thank you for helping me today in my relationship with God! :)
~~ Sarah Q

Anonymous said...

Sarah, there is no such thing as free will, your destiny had been laid out before you were born so your argument is invalid. Ironically, I truly believe that anyone KNOWINGLY taking the pill to prevent birth is sinning. HARD. It goes against God's plan for you and if your interfering with God's plan, it's a sin. I find it amazing that Christians will do all these mental gymnastics to able to tell themselves that what they're doing is ok and that it doesn't matter or the fact that most Christians will ignores entire sections of the Bible and focus or follow other parts. I know someone who is staunch Bible thumpin' Christian who forces his wife to take the pill so as to not disrupt their marriage (his pastor said it was not a sin apparently)but yet will go around judging others, thinking they are mightier than thou. I'm sick of people who do that....

Anonymous said...

I'm late I know but I too pretty much have to take the pill for health reasons. I have a 19 month old and 7 week old. Both were c sections and this last was very scary. They couldn't get my uterus to contract after the baby was taken out and it took 3 different drugs (and my dr. basically beating my uterus) to get the bleeding to stop. I lost a lot of blood with it and my blood pressure was pretty low from what I can remember during the procedure while I was looking up at the monitor, terrified…I want more children, of course, but with what happened to me (uterine atony) and then afterwards uterine tetany from the pitocin and cytotec given after surgery, it is likely that it will happen with my next one and it will be worse. I am a nurse so I understand the extreme risks…it stinks! I also know the risks of the hormones from birth control pills/device/ring etc. So I'm pretty sure I am going to have to get tubes tied in the near future. That way I know that no egg has a chance of getting fertilized. That all said, we have discussed adoption later on if we can afford it :)

E said...

This is a topic I struggled with greatly. I had a slightly different story and a much longer journey to parenthood. I was diagnosed with RA in our first year of marriage. A medication that I was on was a medication used to treat ectopic pregnancies, cancer, and autoimmune diseases. This medication was designed to suppress my immune system and kill fast growing cells like cancer or babies. I chose to take bcp's because I couldn't bare the thought of something I was taking for my health being detrimental to our unborn child. After I stopped taking that medicine and started on another that was considered safe for pregnancy we started trying to conceive a child. Now it took us nearly 3 years to get my RA under control and during that time there were many days where I could barely take care of myself let alone another human being (I called in sick on those days!). It took us 18 months to conceive our first child and 8 weeks to lose him (I dreamt he was a boy). After that we went through an infertility work up where nothing was wrong other than me having 2 autoimmune diseases. We prayed about it for along time what we were to do, should we do ART or adopt or continue the way we were or stop trying to have children. At this point we had been ttc for nearly 3 years. We did some ART before going for the big ART of IVF. IVF truly calls into question when you believe life begins. You are asked a long series of questions about what you want done with your embyos (babies) should something happen to you, your spouse, you decide to not have anymore children and whatnot. Thankfully my husband and I are on the same page and feel that God led us through ART and used this experience to bring us closer to him. We did 3 IUI's and 2 rounds of IVF. I can honestly tell you that this experience has changed me as a woman. In walking the path of pregnancy loss and infertility I cried out to God like never before and trusted him to bring me through. I am now holding my 2 month old son and I praise God each day for the gift of him. I needed this experience to bring me closer to God, I seem to need to be hit over the head to truly appreciate the gift of children. It just goes to show you that God knows exactly what his children need to bring them close.

Long story but that is why I chose to use birth control. I understood exactly what each method did in terms of where the method prevented conception and chose one that I could live with. I don't regret my choice and I pray that by some miracle I would conceive without medical intervention...I do regret wasting all that money on bcps not knowing that I would have so much trouble conceiving!

Brian W. said...

Did God ever inspire any married person to consider practicing contraception?

I don't see anywhere in his word that would initiate such thoughts. Don't those thoughts come from the culture instead? Rather, in Genesis, God said that the two who are joined maritally would become one flesh and indicated the natural result of that would be bearing the fruit of children. And in a letter to the church in Corinth, the senders enjoin that a couple should only abstain from physical union for a time by mutual agreement for prayer and fasting.

Tausha Hamilton said...

What a blessing to read. I have been married for one year. This is my husbad and I boths second marriage. I have 3 and he has 2. Financially things are not the best and I also suffer from depression. I started on the depo shot but after much illness i switched to the pill. It has increased my mood swings and depression and because of birth control my first year of marriage has been a tremendous challenge. I stopped the pill 2 weeks ago and praying God heal my marriage and take control of my fertility. Thsnk you so much for sharing your story

Matt B said...

The Bible speaks against sex before marriage and if you can wait then wait. I think its ok for a woman to get birth control if it helps with their monthly cycle, with cramps etc. If God wants you to get pregnant you will no matter if you use birth control or not. After you are married I think its still ok, the same principle, if God wants you to get pregnant... if the woman has a hysterectomy and cannot have any more children i think the use of condoms is still ok for "performance" purpose if the man suffers with PE.

Anonymous said...

I am quite late to this conversation, however I wanted to interject something that is MY story -- and only mine, but might make a few people sit back and think about this topic and judging. I was married for almost 10 years before we started TTC. ( I had never been on birth control during my marriage.) I had a strong feeling in my heart that God was calling me to adopt (I felt that before I was married) and my husband and I talked about this quite a few times, but he felt unsure. After a year & 1/2 of TTC we saw a specialist and tried a few things, but after prayer and more conversation with my husband we felt that God truly was calling us to adopt. We started the process and in a little less than three years we adopted our daughter. We have since (7yr later) fostered 2 more girls with hopes of adoption. At this time I am over 40yr old. My doctors have told me due to the fact that I have not had any children biologically that I am at a much higher risk for ovarian cancer and by taking a low-hormone birth control I would drop my risk of that cancer by 40%. I have done the research on this as well. The doctors NEVER knew why I was not able to have children biologically --- we always said because God KNEW that our children were to be united with us in another way. I would say that I do not feel in my heart I am not following my Christian faith by now taking BC. I do not wish to have children now that I am well over 40 as I feel it would be a health risk to me and I would say that I feel God has me just where he wanted me to and through prayer and conversation with my husband I am doing what we feel is best. Please be very very careful what judgement may be passed about woman that take BC -- you may not know their stories!

Sons of Zadok said...

You should read in the Bible about Sarah, the wife of Abraham, she was over a hundred years old, when she gave birth to Isaac her son.GENESIS 18:9-15, and 21:1-7.

Anonymous said...

I actually thought that maybe my post might bring more positive light to making others understand the GODLY REASONS that some people may choose to take contraceptives. I have NO interest in birthing ANY of my children at this point in my life. I feel GOD (the same God that wrote Genesis, who wrote the story about Sarah, that I have read by the way.) has called my family to adopt and take care of the orphaned, unwanted & parent-less children of this world. I am taking the medications to help cut my risk of cancer by 40%! I also feel that through prayer with God (the same God you speak of) I know that I am not supposed to have children after the age of 45, due to increased risk of health issues and putting myself at risk when I have a large loving family that GOD has entrusted me with. Maybe when you read my post you missed that, I am not sure, but I thought I would let you know that in case you were one of those people that I was directing my post towards?!

Anonymous said...

I hope I am not going to offend too many on here with what I am about to ask, but if you believe in letting a bodily process like having babies be solely up to God, then why not healing for "any" disease of the body?????? I feel Christians who advocate the "never" use birth control position and to "always" leave it in God's hands alone should explain how this position is not logically consistent with faith healing alone? Both the function of having children and the functioning of diseases both involve bodily processes. By going to a medical doctor rather than God alone for bodily healing, you are essentially "playing God" under this kind of reasoning.

I am sure most of you on here have never made that logical connection. I doubt most of you believe in never going to a medical doctor. Concerning my own position, I believe that "faith healing," while possible under God's will today, is not promised for believers after the 1st century. Those gifts ceased. The same can be argued for trusting in God alone to prevent/cause children. If it is wrong to use birth control because you are "failing to trust in God alone," then it could also be argued as wrong to see a medical doctor, too, because you are not trusting in God to meet "all" your healing needs! To me, this is a major weakness and inconsistency of those arguing the "never" use birth control methods of "any" kind position, because they most likely see medical doctors and do not advocate "faith healing" only. (Quotes "" used are for emphasis)

Anonymous said...

I am just recently married and using contraceptives. I am a college student and my husband is employed part time. We live in a small apartment with little resources. I have been dealing with general anxiety and mental health issues and some days are a struggle. I feel like it would be irresponsible not to be using birth control right now in this time of my life because we would not be able to provide for a child and I feel like I can barely take care of myself some days. Every child deserves to be born to parents who can provide and care for it. I know that our lives and situation won't always be like it is now, and someday I hope to have a child who I can love. There were many people who walked with me in my decision about birth control. My doctor is a highly respected Christian man, and one of my mentors is a nursing professor and she was very supportive of my decision. I feel like birth control is one of those things that is a personal decision for everyone and between them and God. I don't judge those who don't use birth control and respect their reasoning for that and I hope that others can respect others' decisions as well.

Makayla Chalee :) said...

I am actually doing a Research Paper on this matter for a class I am taking 'Analysis of Worldviews' and I had no idea that IUD is a form of abortion and it is very interesting doing this matter on birth control. I would say that my opinion matter on is to go natural ways and not to be put on the "pill" because I believe couples can plan with out the medication that makes child bearing a "planned" when life is good to have a child. Thank you for sharing your thoughts it has been very helpful for my paper.

Anonymous said...

I def think this is a great piece. I just do not get if God man men visual then why does he allow a woman's body to go through so many changes? I worry what Kids will do to body and if my sex life will suffer

Anonymous said...

God did make men to be visually stimulated, but it does not mean that he will not love you even more knowing that your body is changing because you are growing, bearing, and nurturing his offspring. If he is having trouble being attracted to your different body (probably won't though, because he loves you! and he's a man lol) it is an issue of the heart, not the way God made him. And your sex life will change, but only for a time, and it does not have to suffer. It's a spiritual as well as physical act meant to bring us closer to our husband. Everything in our lives changes at some point, and it is all meant to grow us and grow our marriages. Your body will change eventually, so no use putting off having kids. If you take care of your body before and during pregnancy, it will not seem too different to anyone but you :)

Anonymous said...

Mandy-Thank you for your enlightening post. You have really looked at both sides of the birth control issue. Just to inspire a few people, my husband and I have used the Creighton Model for 14 and 1/2 years of marriage. We didn't have children for the first 6 years because my husband was a full time student and he would have had little time for fatherhood. This was achieved with the Creighton Model. We now have three blessings. We are always open to more children if God wants to bless us but we also try to plan around illness, life changes and other things that would make parenting exceedingly difficult.