January 23, 2018

Simcha Fisher: A lot to ask from a baby

PHOTO: Chien Pham

Occasionally, a lonely, unloved young woman will deliberately get pregnant by a man she doesn’t care about, thinking that a baby will love her unconditionally.

She’s so desperate for affection and loyalty, she creates another human being, not realizing that a baby loves his mother, but a baby is also helpless, endlessly needy and demanding, and more often makes us feel less competent and sure of ourselves, not more. If it’s affirmation and unmixed affection we need, that’s simply too much to expect from a little baby.

Sometimes, a couple whose marriage is in bad shape will try this and that, counseling, date night, retreats, sexual gimmicks, and all; and then, in desperation, they conceive a baby, thinking that a child in common will knit their relationship together.

Very often, rather than helping, a pregnancy and child just widens the gulf. If a marriage needs deep healing, that’s simply too much to expect from a little baby.

PHOTO: Kelly Sikkema

Sometimes a parent will look forward to the birth of a child and will go beyond planning what clothes the child will wear, who his godparents will be, or what name he will bear.

An ambitious parent might think ahead to what college the child will attend, what career he will have, how he will bring pride and glory to his family by succeeding brilliantly in everything he does. Thinking he will fulfill all the unresolved expectations and thwarted desires that have been too much for previous generations.

But that’s simply too much to expect from a little baby.

But sometimes. Oh, sometimes. A sad and desperate and lonely world will find itself standing there on a dark day in December. It will be needy and troubled, desperate for love, thwarted in everything it has longed for. The world will not know where to turn, how to find help.

Listen, world. Unto you, a child was born. Ask Him for what you need. It’s not too much to expect from this little baby.

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