Biblical Perspectives on Breastfeeding and Parenting
Jesus said, "Let the children alone, and do not hinder them from coming to Me, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these." Matthew 19:14
God gives us children because children produce adults. No other human relationship will give you as much opportunity for personal growth as that of raising a child. Being a parent helps to insure that we grow toward greater maturity, it teachs us unconditional love, humility, and patience helping us to become more Christ like, honest, humble, patience, kind, selfless, obedient, and most of all full of honor and love for our Heavenly Father.
God's richest blessings to you in your parenting,
~ 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 ~
"Behold, I tell you a mystery we shall not all sleep
but we shall all be changed."
In context, this passage is about the second coming of Christ,
but these words could also be used to describe parents.
Parents don't get the sleep they use to get before children;
but all parents shall be changed forever.
Hopefully, in a wonderful way!
Quote by Herbert Ratner, M.D. "Love is the cement of society and the prime function of the family is to raise children who know how to receive love -- who know how to give love, who develop the kind of self-respect and love for themselves they must have if they are going to love anybody else. We have to do everything possible to give the newborn infant a sense of worth. The function of the family is to turn the newborn individual into an adult who is emotionally secure and capable of loving because love is what keeps us together."
A Young Mother's Story
Becoming a mother the very first time
Is as difficult as can be
I needed support from someone
To tell me how to be
Deep inside me “mothering”
Wanted to rise to the top,
But insensitive comments of others
Sometimes made me stop.
I wanted to still his crying
And rock my newborn baby,
But whisperers said I was spoiling.
And, I wondered, “Am I, maybe?”
I wanted to hold him closely
And sing to him when he cried at night.
Some told me he should “cry it out”,
But my heart told me that was not right.
Feeling my baby at my breast
Was an emotion that defied description!
And holding him and loving him
Was my deep-down inner conviction.
But many of you warned me,
“Don't tie yourself down like that,
Leave a bottle and the baby.”
And, you'd give my hand a pat.
Outside my mouth is smiling,
But inside my heart is sad.
Do you think that loving a baby
Is simply a passing fad?
So without your help or assistance
I went on and met his needs.
I rocked him, loved him, and held him.
And when he was a toddler
You thought I should seek my profession.
And enroll the child in nursery school,
But this is my confession:
I'd rather stay at home with him
And watch him grow each day,
And cut out cookies and read to him,
And simply watch him play.
What's a profession really worth
When here I can each day
Teach this heart the Word of God
And help him learn to pray?
Together this special child and I
Thrilled to those stories of old…
Abraham, Joseph, Daniel,
And all the prophets bold
We learned about the Savior,
And about His perfect love.
And how we all can live with Him
In that beautiful home above.
Yes, I have found fulfillment,
And within me inner peace.
But I worry about my friends,
And the comments that do not cease.
Where were my sisters in the Lord
Who are commanded from above
To teach the younger women
Their husbands and children to love?
Why didn't someone tell me
How thrilled my heart would be
To see this tiny soul God gave
Where were you when I needed you
When others were tempting me so,
To think of my own self first
And let the baby's needs go?
My deepest heartfelt prayer is that
Within the grace of God
I may be a help to others
As along this road they trod.
Help me to remember
The pressures they will see
And tell them their “mothering instincts”
Are as true as they can be.
Young women, love your babies
Every single day you live,
And meet their needs and cuddle them
And GIVE…and GIVE…and GIVE
~ 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 ~
Little Eyes Upon You
There are little eyes upon you and they're watching night and day.
There are little ears that quickly take in every word you say.
There are little hands all eager to do anything you do;
And a little boy who's dreaming of the day he'll be like you.
You're the little fellow's idol, you're the wisest of the wise.
In his little mind about you no suspicions ever rise.
He believes in you devoutly, holds all you say and do;
He will say and do, in your way when he's grown up just like you.
There's a wide-eyed little fellow who believes you're always right;
And his eyes are always opened, and he watches day and night.
You are setting an example every day in all you do;
For the little boy who's waiting to grow up to be like you.
First Things First - a Christian Perspective (by Mary DeMent)
My son toddles out of his bedroom in the morning, rubbing the sleep from his eyes. If he doesn't see me right away, he asks his father, "Where's Mommy?" My husband may say, "Come here, buddy. Give me a hug." But he continues, "I need Mommy. Where is she?" He then sets off in search of his Mommy. For no one else will do first thing in the morning. His desire is for me alone.
I realize that he will eventually outgrow his need to see me and be held by me before he starts his day. So I'm holding these moments, these days, close to my heart.
Jesus said, "I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven" (Matthew 18:3). God wants us to be wise and grow in Him. At the same time, though, I believe He would like us to remain like children when it comes to our longing for Him and for His presence.
I love knowing that my son yearns to be near me first thing in the morning. There is a great sense of joy in understanding that someone loves you that much. So just imagine how God must feel when his children long to meet with Him before they do anything else.
Do we search for Him first thing? I wish I could say I do. But sometimes I fear I'm like the older, more "mature" child who needs to get ready for school, brush her teeth, eat breakfast, rush out the door, and maybe, just maybe, has time to give Mom a peck on the cheek before she starts the day.
We could all take a lesson or two from my son and the rest of those little children Jesus referred to. We need to take the words of Jesus seriously. But unfortunately, I think this is one of those scriptures we just breeze by, thinking, this doesn't really pertain to us.
Look again at the powerful statement He makes! He begins, "I tell you the truth." Since He IS the truth, we ought to pay close attention to His next statement. He continues: "Unless you CHANGE and BECOME as little CHILDREN." What will happen? Read His conclusion carefully, "You will never enter the kingdom of Heaven." We will never enter eternity with Him. Now that should get out attention! Isn't that the goal of every Christian, eternity with Christ, our Lord and Savior?
You know what? I'm never far away when my son calls for me. In fact, I hear him when he first wakes up. I wait for his voice to call out my name. I may not always drop everything and run to him, but when he finds me, I take him up in my arms and hold him tight. Sometimes he says, "I couldn't find you." And I answer, Well, here I am!" He follows, "Yeah, I found you now!" We both smile and hold on tight.
A Newborn's Conversation with God
A baby asked God, "They tell me you are sending me to earth tomorrow,
but how am I going to live there being so small and helpless?"
God said, "Your angel will be waiting for you and will take care of you."
The child further inquired, "But tell me, here in heaven I don't have
to do anything but sing and smile to be happy."
God said, "Your angel will sing for you and will also smile for you.
And you will feel your angel's love and be very happy."
Again the small child asked, "And how am I going to be able to
understand when people talk to me if I don't know the language?"
God said, "Your angel will tell you the most beautiful and sweet words
you will ever hear, and with much patience and care, your angel will
teach you how to speak."
"And what am I going to do when I want to talk to you?"
God said, "Your angel will place your hands together and will teach you how to pray."
"Who will protect me?"
God said, "Your angel will defend you even if it means risking its life."
"But I will always be sad because I will not see you anymore."
God said, "Your angel will always talk to you about Me and will teach
you the way to come back to Me, even though I will always be next to you."
At that moment there was much peace in Heaven,
but voices from Earth could be heard and the child hurriedly asked,
"God, if I am to leave now, please tell me my angel's name."
God said, You will simply call her, "Mom."
~ 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 ~
Mentions of Breastfeeding Found in the Bible
And she said, "Who would have said to Abraham that Sarah would nurse children? Yet I have borne him a son in his old age." And the child grew and was weaned, and Abraham made a great feast on the day that Isaac was weaned. Genesis 21:7-8
Then his sister said to Pharaoh's daughter, "Shall I go and call a nurse for you from the Hebrew women, that she may nurse the child for you?" And Pharaoh's daughter said to her, "Go ahead." So the girl went and called the child's mother. Then Pharaoh's daughter said to her, "Take this child away and nurse him for me and I shall give you your wages." So the woman took the child and nursed him. Exodus 2:7-9
From the God of thy father, who will help thee; and from the Almighty, who will bless thee, with blessings of heaven above, with blessings of the breasts, and of the womb. Genesis 49:25-26
Was it I who conceived all this people? Was it I who brought them forth, that Thou shouldest say to me, 'Carry them in your bosom as a nurse carries a nursing infant, to the land which Thou didst swear to their fathers'?" Numbers11:12
And Na’omi took the child, and laid him in her lap, and she became his nurse. Ruth 4:16
But Hannah did not go up; for she said unto her husband, "I will not go up until the child is weaned; then I will bring him, that he may appear before the Lord and stay there forever. And Elkanah her husband said unto her, "Do what seemeth good in thy eyes; tarry until though has weaned him; only may the Lord fulfill his word." So the woman remained behind, and gave her son suck until she weaned him. Samuel 1:22-23
"And when I rose in the morning to nurse my son, behold, he was dead; but when I looked at him carefully in the morning, behold , he was not my son, whom I had borne." 1 King 3:21
Why did I not die at virth, come forth from the womb and expire: Why did the knees receive me, and why the breasts, that I should suck? Job 3:11-12
And the nursing child will play by the hole of the cobra, and the weaned child will put his hand on the viper's den. Isaiah 11:8
To who would He teach knowledge? And to whom would He interpret the message? Those just weaned from milk? Those just taken from the breast? Isaish 28:9
Like a shepherd will he feed his flock: with his arm will he gather the lambs, and in his bosom will he carry them, will he lead gently those that suckle their young. Isaiah 40:11-12
Whereas you have been forsaken and hated with no one passing through, I will make you an everlasting pride, a joy from generation to generation. You will also suck the milk of nations, And will suck the breast of kings; The you will know that I, The Lord, am your Savior, And your Redeemer, The Mighty One of Jacob. Isaiah 60:15-16
"Be joyful with Jerusalem and rejoice for her, all you who love her. Be exceedingly glad with her, all you who mourn over her, That you may nurse and be satisfied with her comforting breasts, That you may suck and be delighted with her bountiful bosom." For thus says the Lord, "Behold, I extend peace to her like a river, And the glory of the nations like an overflowing stream; And you shall be nursed, you shall be carried on the hip and fondled on the knees. As one whom his mother comforts, so I will comfort you; And you shall be comforted in Jerusalm." Isaiah 66:10-13
Now when she had weaned Lo-ruchamah, she conceived, and bore a son. Hosea 1:8
Give them, O Lord, what thou wilt give! give them a miscarrying womb and dried-up breasts. Hosea 9:14
From the mouth of infants and nursing babes Thou hast established strength, Psalm 8:2
Yet Thou art He that didst bring me forth from the womb; Thou didst make me trust when upon my mother’s breasts. Upon Thee I was cast from birth; Thou hast been my God from my mother's womb. Psalm 22:9-10
Surely I have pacified and stilled my soul, like the suckling on its mother’s breast; like a suckling is in me my soul. Psalm 131:2-3
Oh that you were like a brother to me who nursed at my mother’s breasts! The Song of Solomon 8:1
Even jackals offer the breast, they nurse their young; but the daughter of my people has become cruel like ostriches in the wilderness. The tongue of the infant cleaves to the roof of its mouth because of thirst; the little ones ask for bread, but no one breaks it for them. Lamentations 4:3
Gather the people, sanctify the congregation, assemble the elders, gather the children and the nursing infants. Joel 2:16
And said to Him, "Do You hear what these are saying?' And Jesus said to them, "Yes; have you never read, "Out of the mouth of infants and nursing babes Thou has prepared praise for thyself." Matthew 21:16 (Pslams 8:2)
"But woe to those who are with child and to those who nurse babes in those days!" Matthew 24:19, Mark 13:17 & Luke 21:23
And it came about while He said these things, one of the women in the crowd raised her voice, and said to Him, "Blessed is the womb that bore You, and the breasts at which You nursed." Luke 11:27
"For behold, the days are coming when they will say, 'Blessed are the barren, and the wombs that never bore, and the breasts that never nursed.' Luke 23:29
But we proved to be gentle among you, as a nursing mother tenderly cares for her own children. 1 Thessalonians 2:7
~ 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 ~
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© 2001 Pat Lindsey, IBCLC - Lactation Services all rights reserved.
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