Why have children?
It was soon after 9-11 and I was heartbroken. Oblivious to the constant suffer and strife of so many others throughout the earth, this monstrosity rocked my world, as it did for so many more.
In tears, I asked my dad, "Papi, how can you expect any reasonable person to bring a child into this world that is so broken and fallen? Knowing they would suffer? How could we be so selfish?"
His eyes filled with compassion. His eyebrows softened, and then, in his usual Socratic way, asked, "Why then, should God have sent His Son down here, when He knew with certainty He would suffer, and die, for such a broken world? Is God unreasonable?"
I fell quiet for just a moment, and quickly retorted, "He is God and well, He wanted to save us... but this is different, my kid isn't going to be Jesus!"
My dad became intense as he replied, "Ok, maybe not Jesus, but perhaps your child will help bring peace to this world. Maybe your future kid will do great things to help change this world."
I then responded, "Ok, Dad, what are the chances my kid will be the next renown genius peace-maker?"
He quickly came at me, "...and who says a peace-maker has to be a genius, or renown at all?!"
I saw where he was going with this. In a way, my reasoning for not having kids was starting to sound more selfish than self-less. I didn't want my kids to suffer, because that would make me suffer...
My dad went on, "Do you think your generation is the first one in all history to say that very remark about bringing children to a violent, war-torn, unjust world?
“Susy, we have children for the same reason God sent down His son. To be light for the world. Because we hold on to hope. We trust in God. And God asks that we act out of love for everyone."
I looked up at him, as I grasped the beauty in why we should celebrate the coming of each new child in the world, regardless of the state of our world. I could finally perceive how every generation has the power to usher in a glimmer of loving hope for all creation...
Then, with sad eyes, he said softly,
"When you decide it is not worth bringing children to this world, you have decided this world is not worth saving. You decide it is ok if the next generations live in darkness, or leave it to others to be light...
"How is that love?"