It was by pure sacrifice on my mothers part that I was brought into this world, and clinging to the womb for 24 hours on one of the hottest days in August was my very first act of rebellion. I was simply declining my invitation to the festivities. But the cold steel forceps placed upon my skull and the doctors firm grip put an end to the act of my defiance. And there I was a baby girl 5 lbs 13 oz 19 inches long with hair the color of coal. My lungs worked just fine and I used them to state my disapproval to my mom and to all those present and responsible at Bakersfield Memorial Hospital. I have no possible idea of knowing if I had some kind of supernatural understanding of what I would face ahead, but if my birth was any kind of indication, it was gonna be a bumpy ride and my feet would end up being firmly planted, declining many invitations while being met with the cold steel forceps of life.
Although I came to a knowledge of Christ when I was 18 years old at a boarding school I enrolled into, to turn my life around, I didn’t really know him. I was walking the walk and talking the talk but I honestly had no understanding of the whole rebirth, relationship thing. I would say to myself, ” you are a religious person now, this is what religious people do!” I watched religious people and I copied them. Fortunately God is faithful to draw those whom He calls and He isn’t really interested in Religious People Copy Cats. In fact I think the Bible says these kinds of people become twice the sons of hell they were in the beginning! I was 21 by the time I truly had my come to Jesus moment which is really more like Jesus came to me. I was giving birth to my first born child and had been given the news that because I had been laboring for 32 hours they thought it prudent to take her by Cesarean section. I suppose rebellion runs in family’s. I completely panicked, they made me sign the papers that said “Don’t sue us if we kill you”, then rolled me right into emergency surgery. My heart started to quicken and then to tighten and tighten some more. I grabbed the nurses arm that was hovering above me and said, ” um I am having a heart attack right now so lets not cut me open!” And there we were two rebels laying upon one gurney. My nurse was so kind she said “honey you are having a panic attack, your heart is just fine, you are going to be just fine, try to relax.” And right there in that moment that will forever be etched upon my heart like forceps to my crown I met him, I cant say the voice was audible but the message was so clear,” you must surrender, you are mine, I am in control.” Its not really a fun thing to understand how big God is and how small you are and it certainly isn’t easy to understand but it is a very comforting knowledge. It feels like ones soul is remembering something it cant explain. I had her by the way, my little rebel she looked like an angel with hair the color of coal born on the 31st day just like her mom, she left the surgery room a rebel and I left the surgery room born again.
“I will surely multiply your pain in childbearing; in pain you shall bring forth children. ” Bearing children is a life long event, it doesn’t happen at birth and then its over it begins at birth and continues and the pain of it never goes away and the joy of it is eternal. It is the very essence of long suffering. Long suffering is an attribute of God. Its defined by Noah Webster as Bearing injuries or provocation for a long time being patient and not easily provoked. Child bearing is a constant curse and constant soul care, if you trust the caregiver. I find it completely amazing that God can take something caused to hurt you, allowed by himself, and use it to heal you because of who He is. Being born giving birth and bearing is a cycle we are always continuing on in. Hurting and being healed is a cycle we were intended for, and the heartache and happiness of it all is the greatest teacher. The birth of my second child was longer than the first, he was turned round in the womb and was half way engaged into the birthing canal when I was rushed into emergency surgery again. Funny how life has a way of repeating itself, funny how humans are just little rebel makers. This time I was more calm and yet still frightened, they took him from my body, that beautiful boy. 8 lbs 8 oz 21 inches long and a little old man comb over hairdoo! He said nothing no loud cries of protest, no screaming no nothing, no sound… I thought he might not have made it, and my heart started to tighten and tighten, then he finally found his lungs and started the protest about his arrival, my heart was completely overwhelmed with thankfulness. I wept and I rejoiced. He was was birthed, my faith was again reborn and my surrender was real. We would bear with one another many challenges over the next 18 years and many blessings. Then I would be left to bear him alone and he would bear with me no more. My heart will continue to break and my surrender will continue to grow and I will gladly suffer long the life of my son and the love of my Savior.
Photo: me pregnant with Chile.