Daily Devotional

A Childless Mother Finds a Home

Sunday, July 14, 2024

Scripture: He grants the barren woman a home, Like a joyful mother of children. Praise the LORD! Psalm 113:9 (NKJV)

Observation: God’s care is illustrated by making a barren woman a happy mother of many. Barrenness was understood as a disgrace in ancient cultures and even by the people of the Bible (see Gen. 30:1; 1 Sam. 1:6–7, 10)
     The psalmist cites a specific example of the way in which Yahweh gives sons to the barren housewife. Perhaps this is a further allusion to the experience of Hannah. Some see in the barren housewife here a picture of Zion whose sons were lost in the Babylonian captivity. Now her heart is gladdened by the restoration of her children to her. [Smith, J. E. (1996). The wisdom literature and Psalms. Old Testament Survey Series. Joplin, MO: College Press Pub. Co.]

Application: It amazes, shocks, and saddens me when I hear of a mother that killed her child or children!  How can a mother do that to her own child?  And it’s probably more shocking when we know of so many women who cannot conceive and who would do anything to be able to bear their own child.  Many watch their friends or relatives get pregnant.  They see the joy it brings to them and to their families.  They follow the progress, the changes, the baby shower, and the culmination of the many months of expectancy with the birth of their baby.  And while they rejoice with the other person at the same time they feel the emptiness in their own heart.
     Maybe that’s why the verse in this psalm is so interesting to me.  Some may read it as a promise to the barren that God will answer her prayers and she will bear children of her own.  That is indeed very possible.  I have known of some couples who had given up hope only to find themselves expecting a child of their own.  I have known of couples that adopted a child or even several children and then had children of their own.  So the possibility of having their own children exists and it may indeed happen.
     For others, they will never conceive a child of their own but they have the opportunity to adopt children whom they will raise and love as if they had been born of them.  For them, there is no difference, nor should there be, between naturally born children or adopted children. . . they will receive the same love and treatment.
     Of course there are also some women who are simply not able to have children nor do they want to.  They are very content with having pets or having nothing but a good relationship with their husband.  They make good aunts, and that’s as close as they want to be to children.
     To every woman, whether she bears children or her own, or adopts children, or chooses to not have children at all this psalm speaks the promise that God will give them a home, one just as joyful as the home where children abound.  Let God our Father provide you with that joyful home experience regardless of your circumstances.

A Prayer You May Say: Father God, may our experience be such that whether we have children or not we will have a joyful home where we can experience love and share love with others.

Used by permission of Adventist Family Ministries, North American Division of Seventh-day Adventists.


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