Birds– Flying just weeks after hatching.
Horses– Walking within a couple of hours of birth.
Spiders– Are born with an innate knowledge to construct their own webs, each an architectural wonder.
Sharks– Independent the moment they are born, most make a kill before the end of their first day.
Humans- The crown of creation. In all of their splendor humans are born with an unmatched capacity to… suck. (When compared to the rest of creation this can be taken both literally and figuratively)
From a Darwinian perspective it makes no sense that humans are born so dependent of their parents. This is especially true when you take into consideration how long it takes us to completely mature to adulthood. On average humans go solo at 20 years old. If we are living to be 80, (give or take some years) that means we spend a quarter of our lives maturing. Thankfully there is a higher perspective than what Darwin has to offer.
It has only taken me the first month of Owen’s life to cry, “Why God? Why make raising babies so challenging. There must be an easier way! I really think the stork idea is better than yours!” I can remember one specific moment after changing one of Owen’s diapers. I had bags under my eyes, my clothes smelled of baby vomit and breast milk, and I had just gotten baby poo on my nose (don’t ask, and it’s not what you think). I asked God then and there why He planned parenthood to be so demanding for so long? This sure is a lot of work to get my son to being an independent. That’s when it clicked. It is all part of the process. This isn’t just about growing kids, its about continuing to grow ourselves.
Think of how humanity would be different if we were fully mature physically and mentally at age 4. The other 16 years or so of selfless guidance and sacrificial love would not be necessary. We would become egocentric and narcissistic. It is through the dependence of others that we find meaning and growth in our lives. The burden of a dependent child is something to be embraced and celebrated, but too often in our society it is eschewed and repudiated. Children, just like spouses, are an integrate part of becoming more Christlike. We have to grow spirituality and die to our flesh if we are to be successful parents, husbands and wives. It gives another meaning to God’s command to go forth and multiply. Not only did God want Noah to repopulate the world, but He also wanted Noah to continue to grow.
Yeah, having a child can really put some limits on your Friday nights, but at least your days are filled with opportunities to love and serve your kid. Also, the next time you see a shark you should pity it. They really miss out one of life’s greatest blessings in parenthood. After their offspring are spawned they just keep on doing what they have always done, consume… just like any other parent who never invests in their children.
God bless, get some poo on your nose and be glad in it!