Today I am 38 weeks pregnant with my sixth child. And, as is usual for me at this point in my pregnancy, I am currently in the throes of intense impatience and longing for my new little one. In my current state, I found it particularly powerful to be reminded at a recent doctrinal class that this coming child is a gift from the Lord which my husband and I are receiving so that may nurture and guide him and then turn around and give him back to the Lord.
“And she brought him up with her when she had weaned him, with three bullocks, and one ephah of meal, and a jug of wine; an she brought him to the house of Jehovah, to Shiloh; and the lad was but a lad. And they slaughtered a bullock, and brought the lad to Eli. And she said, O my lord, by the life of they soul, my lord, I am the woman who stood up with thee in this place to pray to Jehovah. For this lad I prayed, and Jehovah has granted to me my petition which I petitioned of Him. And also I have given back what I asked of Jehovah.” I Samuel 1:24-28
“Spiritual parents love their children for their spiritual intelligence and moral life, loving them thus for their fear of God and for their piety of conduct or life, and at the same time for their affection for and application to useful endeavors of service to society, thus for the virtues and good habits in them. Out of a love for these traits principally do they provide for and supply their needs. Consequently, if they do not see such traits in them, they estrange their heart from them and only out of duty do anything for them. ” Conjugial Love 405
“The nature of the love of little children and love of older children found in spiritual people, and the nature of it in natural ones, is clearly apparent from such people after death. For on arriving in the other world, most fathers remember their children who have passed on before them; and these are also presented to them, and they recognize each other. Spiritual fathers simply look them over and ask them in what state they are, rejoicing if all is well with them, and grieving if it is not. Then, following some conversation, instruction and counsel regarding a heavenly moral life, they part from them, telling them before parting that they are no longer to be remembered as their fathers, because the Lord is the only Father of all who are in heaven (according to His words in Matthew 23:9), and that they will never remember them as being their children. ” Conjugial Love 406
“The earth is Jehovah’s, and the fullness of it; The world, and they who dwell in it.” Psalm 24:1