Sunday, February 8, 2015

Living a Childless Life - Dealing with Imagination

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"Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind" 
Luke 10: 27
I have lived a "Childless" life not because that is what I desired, rather because it just happened that way.  I was married in my mid 20's and then every time we thought we were getting settled in - a crisis would arise: health issues including cancer and cardiac disorders, parents-in-law getting ill at the same time (one with cancer and the other with Alzheimer's), etc....and now I'm in my 40's.  I did NOT plan for all of this to happen - it just did. 

You see, God has been in control of my life all along! God knew that I would not have been able to handle taking care of children when my husband was going through chemo therapy.  And - God also knew that we would not have been able to move into my in-law's house to take care of them if we had had children.  God is in control and has a purpose for everything - even a "Childless Life."

This is the fifth post in a Series on "Living a Childless Life" and today we focus on "dealing with imagination."  I don't know how long this series will be, but on the second Sunday of every month we will try to focus on another issue from "Living a Childless Life."


Our imagination is a wonderful thing but sometimes it can be very destructive.  I can't tell you how many countless minutes or hours that I have spent imagining what it would have been like to have children.  I have them named: 2 daughters & 1 son - "Clare" (spelled like the city in Michigan), "Isabelle" with the middle name "River" and then "Gus" (short but yet cool).  I have imagined what kinds of birthday parties I would have planned, whenever Christmas comes around I think of what our family Advent time would have been like (similar to what my parents used to have when I was a child).  I have even tried to imagine what they might have looked like.  And why? - What a waste of time and mental energy.  It didn't benefit me in any way - it was only harmful.  So, how do we prevent our imagination from becoming destructive?


1.  Protect our minds


Be careful about what you allow into your mind - which means being cautious about what you watch on TV; about what you read on the computer or what type of books you are reading; be "mindful" of what you study and memorize - make sure that whatever you permit into your mind fits into the descriptions below: (also click HERE to read "Think Good Thoughts" )

 "Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable - if anything is excellent or praiseworthy - think about such things." Philippians 4:8




2.  Putting God first


When I was imagining what could have been, I was putting "me" first - not God.  If I had loved God with all my heart, soul, strength and mind then I never would have been hurt by my own thoughts.  "Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord" - allowing my imagination to wander to "neverland" had no practical purpose and did NOT glorify God at all.  As a result, in that instance, my imagination was harmful to me because I didn't put God first. 


" Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men.  ................It is the Lord Christ you are serving."  Colossians 3:23 & 24 
(NOTE - I only took 1 sentence out to emphasize my point - please read the entire verse 24 - it is a good one)







3.  Planning our future MUST come from God


I have never been a fan of the "Five year plan" - you know what I mean how some people set out goals that they must meet in five or ten years.  We do NOT control the future and planning our future in that way prevents us from listening to God or seeking God's guidance - there is no trust in the "Five year plan" mentality.
  



" 'For I know the plans I have for you,' declares the Lord, 'plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.' "  Jeremiah 29:11


Living in the pretend world will give you imaginary results.


Other "Living a Childless Life" Posts:
Dealing with Jealousy
Dealing with Insults
Dealing with Loneliness
Dealing with Regret
Dealing with Guilt




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14 comments:

  1. I'm in my mid 20s and still don't want any kid. However, I know it must feel lonely when older and not having kids. I wish you peace of mind and carry on.

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  2. I agree and totally believe that God is in control. However I don't see an issue with writing out a "5 year plan", you just have to be realistic about it. If you have the mentality that everything on that list must get checked off and if you don't you're a failure, then you're setting yourself up for disappointment. But, if you are willing to allow the list to change and adapt over time as your life changes, then having a plan isn't a bad thing.

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  3. This is a wonderful article Angie. Thanks so much for sharing this. Sometimes, I have a tendency to get ahead of God. And believe me he has no problem bringing me back to reality.

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  4. I always love reading these. You are such an amazing strong women of faith and I am blessed to know you!

    Laura @ Mice In The Kitchen

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  5. God always seems to have different plans for us then we ever imagined. He always seems to know what is best and we should trust and follow him. Thanks for sharing!

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  6. You are an amazing woman Angie. And awesome writer.

    I've tried to imagine life without my children. I can't.

    God Bless, Darlene

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    1. Thank you so much Darlene - that means so much to me.
      God bless you too!

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  7. What a good reminder. This was so touching! I cannot pretend to know the will of God. Thank you for sharing your heart with us!

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  8. Angie, you are such an amazing woman! I truly love you and admire your strength and your faith. I can't wait for the day we get to "meet" and I can give you a big hug!

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  9. Thank you for sharing this wonderful article. I would not be here right now if I didn't have God in my life. I have had alot of tragedy in my life but the worst was when my son was killed on his motorcycle because a lady was playing with her child and pulled out in front of him. I can't thank God enough for all he has done for me.

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  10. this is so powerful. i wish i had better control over my mind sometimes. i admire you for this, and your walk with God.

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  11. WOW! This was just a little over whelming for me. I am so very blessed. God granted me 4 beautiful children. But not without a price, one that I will never understand but its ok, because between children I miscarried twice. It was life crushing. But I do know they couldn't be in better place than with The Lord. I have to admit I wonder about the other children,but I do not dwell to much on it cause it always brings tears. There is strength in the Lord and that is where I need to be and stay always. Thank you for sharing. I hope to read more

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Thank You.

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