From time to time I have the privilege of having a guest writer on this blog. Tonight’s guest writer is Mrs. Christine Benson, the wife of the late Charles Edward Benson (3/4/1956-4/24/2017). Bro. Charles was and Sis. Christine continues to be long-time members of my church, Full Gospel Holy Temple Church World Headquarters in Dallas, TX.
Charles and Christine were married for 40 years when he unexpectedly passed away three years ago. Sis. Christine, while continuing to adjust to life without her beloved Charles, decided to encourage others by writing a column in the Jewett Messenger in Jewett, TX. Today’s featured column is entitled “A Childless Marriage” (Benson, 2020 pg. 8A). Though Charles and Christine never had children of their own, they were a wonderfully saved and Holy Ghost filled couple that loved and helped to raise many children. Her column has served to encourage many childless couples; the love that they had for the children of others is awe-inspiring. If you are a childless couple please know that, as Christine states in the column, “Just because your womb is barren, your heart does not have to be.” May Charles’ and Christine’s love and reliance on God serve as an inspiration to those of you who are also childless.
A Childless Marriage by Christine Benson
Once again, I pray that you are all safe and healthy. We must do our part to maintain a safe and healthy environment for our children. Just imagine what they have become accustomed to already. There was a baby born in my family and I assumed he could see me smiling through my eyes, because as I talked to him through the mask, he smiled and started frilling his hands. We have all adjusted to a new normal. Life is always changing, and we must prepare ourselves for change.
Last month I said I would address the topic “A Childless Marriage”. I have mentioned several times that Charles and I did not have biological children. A childless marriage does not have to be a life without children. Charles and I were married eighteen years before we were ever alone. There was always some child who became attached to us and eventually they were at our home as a regular routine. On the weekends we really had them because school was out and we would give parents a break on Saturdays and Sundays. They were around our table as olive trees. We would take them home for the entire weekend.
During the week I felt the difference and those were the times I had my most struggles, praying and asking God to fill the emptiness in my womb. I never stopped trusting God for children. One day Charles saw my despair and he wrapped me in his arms, looked me in the eyes and stated with authority: “I know you want children. So do I. I love children. We are doing our part. God makes babies, so until God blesses us we are going to live holy.”
His proclamation of truth and my trust in his words as a man of God gave me assurance that everything was going to be alright. We did not deny any child the love they needed from us just because they were not our biological children.
I knew a woman once who had no children in her home and she withheld her love and affection from children and refused to be called mother. I did not judge her for her actions, because I was not on her journey. However, I noticed that the child who wanted to be a part of her life was denied her love.
Please do not allow your childless marriage to cause you to become bitter and hostile towards children. Just because your womb is barren, your heart does not have to be. Ask God to give you children and He will. We had (have) so many and I am grateful that we allowed our childless marriage to direct us in the path of some child who needed our love. (And we needed their love also). It was so fulfilling and today so rewarding.
Had I withheld my love from the children who wanted to be in our presence I know today my whole life would be different. I have children who check on me weekly. We thought about adoption but there were so many at home with their parents who needed that extended family love. We became PawPaw, Meme, Granpa and Granma, or whatever they wanted to call us as long as it was respectful. We never set out to take the place of a family member, however, the children needed love and we were willing to sow those seeds of love. And now, I am reaping those seeds of love.
♥ A note from one of her children.
Thank you Mrs. Benson,
I love you very much Mrs. Benson. My sister and I appreciate all that you’ve done for us. You’ve been a part of our lives since we were little girls and you watched us every step of the way. You welcomed us to your farm, and you let us partake in peaceful serene activities. Thank you. You are a jewel to the Jackson family. Ania #2.
My daily prayer is “Jesus make of me a handful of dough, one who trusts enough to be kneaded, one who loves enough to be shared”. (Taken from Fresh Bread by Joyce Rupp.) As we embark on a new year, I admonish you to ask God for “FRESH STRENGTH”. We are going to need it. He will renew our strength and direct our path. I am willing. Will you take this New Year’s journey with me? We can be the fresh strength our children need. They can come and we can give them the Bread of Life.
Next Month I will talk about “A New Beginning”. I have found a new beginning and I am excited! Happy New Year. Thank you for all your kind words and prayers. Please continue to pray for me.
Christine Benson, wife of Charles Edward Benson of Jewett Tx.
I pray that this column was a blessing to you as it was to me. Be encouraged and may God bless you all.