Mama’s Choice – Part 3: Ultimatum

Mama’s Choice – Part 3: Ultimatum September 25, 2012

by Vyckie Garrison

While we’re on the topic of Choice – although I’ve written about this before, I must say it again: what choices do devoted Christian women really have?

“If He is not Lord of all, He is not Lord at all.”

“What is most important?” Nancy Campbell asks Christian women.  “When we refuse to have children, we deprive God, Eternity, our husbands, ourselves, grandparents, our children, the Church, and the World.” In this view, no woman can legitimately claim to love the Lord with all her heart, soul, mind and strength, if she withholds her womb from His service. (God’s Visions for Families: What the Bible Says About Having Children by Nancy Campbell, Above Rubies, 1995 – the updated version of this book is “Be Fruitful & Multiply“)

For the Quiverfull believer, it’s a matter of trust.

Yes – of course, Michelle Duggar has a right to utilize her own womb however she likes. But, I don’t agree with pro-choice feminists’ premise that Michelle Duggar’s choice to have 20 babies is “just another side of reproductive choice.” Anyone who is familiar with the Quiverfull philosophy which compels Michelle to keep pumping out babies knows that hers is a bounded choice. To a firmly convinced “Pro-Life” woman such as Michelle, the “choice” is to be open to the possibility of yet another pregnancy, or else tell God, “No thanks – You’ve blessed me enough already” and in so doing, set herself up in the place of God to make decisions about whether or not to bring another eternal soul into existence.

I can’t speak for Michelle, but when I believed what she believes – there was no choice of all. Of course, I would welcome all the babies the Lord placed in my womb. Of course, I would risk my life. No way would I refuse the will of God for my life. Why would I choose barrenness – the curse of God? Why would I deny LIFE itself to another person – merely because of the “inconvenience” to me? How could I consider my own health – when we’re talking about a BABY – a tiny human with potential for eternal life in Heaven?

A woman’s “choice” was anathema to me because I believed that I was not my own; I had been bought with a price (the blood of Christ ~ 1 Cor. 6:20) and therefore, I sought to “honor God with my body” which essentially meant dutifully birthing seven “blessings,” nearly losing my life on more than one occasion.

In the same way that the fundamentalist Christian God allows people to exercise their free will by choosing between worshipping and serving Him or else burning in Hell forever – the Quiverfull woman must make the decision to trust God and perhaps die physically, or trust in the Pill and her own common sense – and die spiritually for all eternity.  That’s not a choice – it’s an ultimatum.

Intro | Part 1 | Part 2 |

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Vyckie Garrison started No Longer Quivering to tell the story of her “escape” from the Quiverfull movement. Over time, NLQ has developed into a valuable resource of information regarding the deceptions and dangers of the Quiverfull philosophy and lifestyle. Several more former QF adherents are now contributing their stories to NLQ and our collective voice makes these Quiverfull warnings impossible to dismiss or ignore.

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  • shadowspring

    That is just so strange to me, and yet just yesterday at clinicals, a women brought in her sick child. When she said it was number seven, I assumed she was a home school mom. Yup. She had read Vicky Farris’ book and learned that it was God’s will to have all the children He wanted her to have. The big difference between this lady and a ‘truly committed” QFer is that since she almost died giving birth to this last child, and the child also had problems, then she and her husband understood: God was telling them to stop procreating and get snipped.

    I hope her husband gets snipped quick before someone loans that lady a Nancy Campbell book!

  • wild little fox

    That really is food for thought. It is hard … I have friends who are Muslim women who wear coverings. I have friends who are fundamentalist Christians and family who were so crazy fundy that they caused my former church to split. I struggle with the line of where religious freedom starts and where women’s rights begins. Both are very important. And I’m pro-choice (always have been) but as someone raised by a very abusive, narcissistic, authoritarian, patriarch I can relate MORE to the spiritual abuse side. It has left me chronically depressed with horrid anxiety that makes me as about as useful as a stick of furniture. I really do understand.

  • Saraquill

    Will you address under this series how this effects women who are barren or otherwise infertile? I”m also curious what those people have to say about fertility treatments.

  • Vyckie said: “The Quiverfull woman must make the decision to trust God and perhaps die physically, or trust in the Pill and her own common sense – and die spiritually for all eternity. ”

    Did QF women really believe that their salvation was in jeopardy if they didn’t “trust God with their wombs”? I thought it was a matter of “This is God’s best, and those who REALLY love God will do this– but you can still get into Heaven if you don’t get this revelation.”

    I know sometimes there’s a subtle message that maybe if you’re “lukewarm” enough, you won’t be saved, but I thought Quiverfull teachings at least gave lip service to salvation by grace through faith alone.

  • Sounds Catholic to me. Grace is taught in Catholicism, but there are so many add-ons in that religion one can easily get lost in the middle of it all. Then, couple that with using the womb as a church growth plan, and it gets really hard to not think limiting the family is the way to hell. If not hell, eons more in purgatory. Either way, not a comforting thought.