Fertility Appreciation

Our seven strategies for building the Civilization of Love are Prayer, Premarital Chastity, Fertility Appreciation, Openness to Children, Marital Faithfulness, Natural Family Planning, and recognizing the Dignity of the body.  We are examining each one to see how they can be used to transform our world.

With Fertility Appreciation we help people, especially women, understand the great value they have because of their fertility. So many people have no concept of the great dignity they possess. Fertility, especially, has been devalued. Instead of a great gift to be treasured, our society treats fertility as at best an inconvenience, and at worst a disease that we must “cure.” It’s common to take pills, get shots, and even have surgery to remove the “defect” of being fertile. This is a great tragedy, the source of much pain that fills our society.

Fertility Appreciation, learning to value and respect the great gift God has given us, is aimed at reversing the unfortunate effects of rejecting our fertility. A great place to start is learning to value ourselves! I am “fearfully and wonderfully made!”(Ps. 139:14) Life-breath from God flows in and out of me. I can share that life with those around us. The wonder of wonders, I can participate in the creation of another life, a life able to know and love eternally! We may look like oysters outside, but inside we are full of pearls. The more deeply we understand this truth, wrap ourselves around it, and allow it to affect the deepest part of ourselves, the more we will be able to support the parents and potential parents we come in contact with.

The people we meet and live with need help with this idea. The culture tells them “blessed are the barren,” that they should avoid parenthood like the plague and live as thoughtless children all their lives: (e.g. “the one who dies with the most toys wins”). We know the truth. Children are the SUPREME blessing of marriage. Every child is a blessing, regardless of circumstances. We can show parents that we honor them and that we are proud of them for taking on this tremendous responsibility. If we have been blessed with children of our own, we can radiate the truth that they are a wonderful gift. We must think it, live it, and spread it. Sure, children will try us to the depths of our souls, but that’s part of the blessing. That’s how we grow.

Organizations can especially help to spread this message. Parenting never takes place in a vacuum. Our local pregnancy support center, Elizabeth New Life Center, offers a wonderful service to their clients: a class called Fertility Appreciation* in which men and women are taught about how fertility works. They get to see what an awesome gift and challenge their fertility is. For many, this is a totally new concept. They have never heard that their fertility is a gift of incalculable value, that they themselves have great value and dignity. For many, this becomes a door to a more solid, healthy lifestyle. The success stories are awesome.

Lots of organizations can help here. News media have a great power to affirm parents, as do schools, churches, fraternal organizations, and others. Early in our marriage, when my wife and I had only one child, we went to a small Baptist church south of town. They gave a potted lily to the youngest mother there, which was my wife. It was a small, silly thing, but it really affirmed us. It gave us a boost of strength and joy that helped us keep going. Ask the Holy Spirit for inspiration – there are so many great possibilities.

Our culture has swallowed whole the lie that fertility is a curse, and that lie has helped to drive it mad. By becoming aware of the incredible dignity God has endowed each of us by gifting us with fertility, and by sharing that truth with others, we inject a little sanity into our world – the medicine our culture needs to heal. Sometimes it seems the world will never be sane again, but there are more and more signs that things are beginning to change. Now, more than ever, it is crucial to spread this “medicine” as far and wide as we can.

Fertility Appreciation classes are available from One More Soul.

Fertility Appreciation for Parents – Teaching the Way of Love (twl4parents.com)

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