Generation Cedar

Nowadays, the cost of children is the forefront of family planning discussions. It’s all about “can we afford them?”

Interestingly, I don’t think folks talked much about affordability of children back in the day. Not even during the Depression when feeding a child could actually be a serious challenge.

And I only bring up the contrast to highlight the fact that the value of children has changed over the last several decades.

And because we don’t value human life the same, we’ve had to come up with good reasons to justify our decision to not have them. It makes me sad that we have come to measure life with a dollar sign, like another household commodity.

Which is why I so appreciated this light-hearted but serious look at the problem of measuring children by our pocket books, written by Brant Hansen. You’ll LOVE it. Or you’ll hate it.

“Thing is, my wife and I didn’t have the money, either. When we had our boy, Justice, I made $17,500. We rented a duplex, and drove two cars worth a combined – not making this up, this is what they sold for: $125. And this isn’t the 50’s. This is the 90s….”

Read the rest The Cost of Children

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6 Responses

  1. Love it! I wish I had more vision when I was younger (42 now) and had a larger family. Love my 3 children with all my heart, but believed the world (and unfortunately family) who convinced me I would be getting in over my head with more children. Listen to your heart and the Lord and have children and raise them well! The time goes so fast and is worth more than anything else you could do or buy.

  2. My kids asked me what I was reading, so I told them it’s an article about how children are a blessing. They love that! I wish I could convince others like my lovely Christian neighbor of that. It breaks my heart when I feel like the outsider, and the one looked at as crazy, or I guess I’m not sure WHAT people are thinking. But I have definitely felt the 3rd degree from others, why, because I have kids? People have kids all the time, how am I any different than them? Well, I guess I am. I must be crazy……crazy about my kids! 🙂
    I like what my friends mom said recently. “Kids are the only thing we can take with us.” She believed the lie and didn’t have any more, and she is sad that she could have. This life is short, and there is nothing that should be more desirable than children. What on earth is happening In the hearts and brains of people?!!! Oh ya,
    “The heart is deceitful above all things, And desperately wicked; Who can know it?” Jeremiah 17:9
    I guess that explains it!

  3. I don’t disagree with this premise at all. We’re on one modest income with our current family of five and financial concerns aren’t really an element in our family planning. What better way to spend your money anyway?
    However, I do want to point out that, whether it was openly discussed or not, the birth rate did drop significantly during the 1930’s. Since reliable birth control was just becoming available, it is unlikely that this was due to a widespread embrace of contraceptives. As they watched their children go hungry and lost their homes, people were legitimately concerned that they could not meet the basic human needs of another child. A lot of things, including the presence of government assistance (which came into existence during that era for precisely those reasons), have changed since then. I don’t dispute that what many people currently consider as sufficient financial stability for another child is off base either though.

  4. My mom and I were just talking about this today. My mom is one of 14 children. They were poor, and sometimes ate just bread and eggs. On a rare occasion, Grandma would make fried chicken for a special Sunday dinner. One day, a homeless man came to the door, led by the aroma of the chicken. He said he was very hungry and asked for food. Though there was barely enough for the family, Grandma took some of that food and gave it to the homeless man!

    I share this to illustrate that by today’s standards, my grandparents could not “afford” most of those children. But they valued life, and knew that children were more valuable than dollars. And even in their hard times, they were still able to help others. God provides…even when it’s not the way *we* think it should look like!

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