My God in My Labor

A friend asked me what helped my focus during pregnancy and labor.  What I did to maximize the potential for a pain-free birth.  I don’t presume to know how everyone should give birth.  All I can share is what I did, what worked for me, and that it DID work for me.

Genesis 3:16 says:

16 To the woman he said, “I will greatly increase your pains in childbearing; with pain you will give birth to children. Your desire will be for your husband, and he will rule over you.” (NIV)

16Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow1 and thy conception; in sorrow2 thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee. (KJV)

Sorrow1 is translated from the Hebrew word itstsabown (its-tsaw-bone’) which is from from atsab (aw-tsab’); worrisomeness, i.e. Labor or pain — sorrow, toil. Atsab is a primitive root; properly, to carve, i.e. Fabricate or fashion; hence (in a bad sense) to worry, pain or anger — displease, grieve, hurt, make, be sorry, vex, worship, wrest.

Sorrow2 is translated from the Hebrew etseb (eh’-tseb) which also comes from atsab; meaning an earthen vessel; usually (painful) toil; also a pang (whether of body or mind): grievous, idol, labor, sorrow.

With these, I chose to remove the opportunity for fear to reside:

For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline.” 2 Timothy 1:7

Instead when I felt the anxiousness that the anticipation of labor brought, I broke it down to determine whether it was a noteworthy concern or if I was “fabricating” or worrying.  I reminded myself that God would not tell me there was a concern through fear.  I focused my mind on the restoration that ensued by the indwelling of His Holy Spirit.  I reminded myself that what was lost in the garden -clarity and perception, communion and fellowship, and ability and power- were restored to me.  I reminded myself that I was given authority in Christ’s name because He sent His Spirit.

Because of my long labor, of on-again/off-again contractions, by recommendation, I meditated on:

“My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience.” James 1:2-3

I reminded myself to trust in Him and His perfect timing and that God was “doing a work” in me (Philippians 1:6).  He in fact was creating and developing a precious baby!!

I also trusted that my body was designed to have babies!  God created me and His own Word says:

“Shall I bring to the time of birth, and not cause delivery?” says the LORD. Shall I who cause delivery shut up the womb?” says your God. Isaiah 66:9

As you do not know what is the way of the wind, Or how the bones grow in the womb of her who is with child, So you do not know the works of God who makes everything. Ecclesiastes 11:5

We experience pain as a warning sign that something is wrong.  When we’re experiencing pain during labor, we should take it as a sign that something is wrong – whether it is our position, our health, our fear -it could be one of several different reasons.  For me, my labor was pain-free as long as I was relaxed and calm and did as my body wanted.  When I fought it, whether to hold baby in to move my position, my fear of what it would feel like, or not staying focused on God’s promise, I experienced pain.  This, for me, was a warning to stop those things and continue in following His lead.

Again, I don’t presume to know everything about giving birth.  I do know that I had faith in God, trusted Him, believed with all my heart, and let Him do His thing.  I took care of myself during my pregnancy – I ate a lot of protein, drank teas to prepare my uterus for labor, stretched, and rested throughout.

For me, my faith carried out into my physical when I refused to allow murk and mire to creep into my mind.  I didn’t allow the doubt of others to cloud my view, nor discourage me from the path He had me on.  Sometimes we’ll be led down a path that doesn’t make a lot of sense to many – but we can always trust that the end is a great one and the journey to get there is entirely worth it.

I know in my journey of pregnancy and delivery, I enjoyed nearly every moment.  Those I struggled with, I had friends there to hold me accountable and keep my focus right, which resulted in that moment of weakness, fear, or exhaustion to be but a blink of an eye.

Having a baby is so glorious.  I pray to experience what I did again in all pregnancies and deliveries to come that may.

I’d like to say that a pain-free labor is for everyone, but as I said, I don’t presume to know everything about giving birth.  But God does.  No this is not me suggesting that if you experience pain that God was not your focus.  I’m simply sharing my story in the hopes that someone can benefit and experience something more than doctors and ourselves can deliver.  God is more grand than we can even imagine.  I know because I had a taste of it!

God bless!

In addition:

Our UC Story

I just want to point out…

Also, please feel free to check out my other blogs to read some of my research on Childbirth in the US.  Be blessed!

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4 thoughts on “My God in My Labor

  1. childbirth can be glorious!!! mine was! i can’t wait to experience the next! i dream about it! i mean literally dream about it at night!

    i agree with you completely, i’d like to also say a pain-free labor is for everyone… but i don’t think i can! i would like to think everyone is capable of having a pain-free labor… *sigh* another area in my life where i feel so misunderstood the majority of the time…

    another important element is to mention labor is still extremely intense, but intense doesn’t necessarily mean pain. 🙂 so strange how easily it can be confused with just a simple expectation of pain!

    love the verses!!!! thanks for sharing!!!

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  2. This is so great that I’m going to share you on my Google Reader!! 🙂 I want everyone to read this. The verse from Genesys 3:16 really speaks to me, as I am trying to express to others why I feel my labor is not up to the discretion of a doctor, but rather will fall to the hands of my husband to take control. My HTB is so well prepared and equipped to be a great father, and I know he is the only person I will want to turn to when I am in my weakest moments during the laboring process. I had someone tell me I was careless about a month ago when I spoke of my interest to have an unassisted childbirth. It broke my heart, as I’m sure it did yours initially because you know that you want nothing but the best for your babies and would never place them in harms way. But it was in that moment I found the most solice with my Lord because He reminded me that I was not crazy, and that the decision He brings us to is never a crazy or careless decision!!

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  3. jeni, i bet it did break your heart! i remember how mine felt during those times! very tough! it’s so hard to be so misunderstood about something so very dear.

    i’m so glad your htb is so prepared and ready to take this road with you! what an awesome thing!!

    when your time comes, if i may be so bold to say something that was so very helpful for me, remember to stay far away from the concept of needing saved or rescued from your labor! focus on God’s design for labor and the whole process – therefore you won’t feel the need to be rescued or saved from God’s divine plan! 🙂 (i heard just a tinge of that in your comment above and my dear sister got this through my head and i soooo appreciated it! if i misunderstood, please disregard the above! LOL) eric was such an amazing support system during the whole labor. even though i fully understood i did not want to be saved, his encouragement was just the push i needed. he didn’t pester me, he didn’t pull me out of “baby land”. he was there when i needed him and was waiting patiently when i didn’t. what a blessing! 🙂

    i think you need to hurry on up and get married so you can have a baby already! i’m sure ready again! *sigh* i guess we’ll sit in our ‘waiting boats’ together! 🙂

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  4. I take no issue in seeing a doctor should I feel I’m in medical need – but our bodies were created to have babies just like it was created to transport blood to all its organs, rid itself of waste, or even to bring moisture to the eye! Carrying and delivering a baby is not a foreign concept that our bodies should need intervention. With that said, we must stay healthy and know our bodies but most importantly be in communication and fellowship with God so when the time comes we know when we are okay and when we need help.

    I found keeping to myself about it all was what made it more intimate between God and I, my husband and I, and those I’m close with. Of course I shared occasionally for the pure enjoyment of ones face of confusion and question. I enjoyed sharing it simply for the informing aspect of it all. As long as I was confident and adamant with a pleasant smile, people were quite intrigued. Interestingly enough, family and friends who disagreed were much less confrontational than I anticipated. I heard a lot from others about what was being said – of the panic, fear, disappointment and jumping to conclusions that ensued shortly after learning of our decision. I was mocked and made fun of but all in all, I enjoyed the opportunities it brought to be a part in bringing to their awareness the truth – of God’s scripture and of the unnecessary interventions in pregnancy, labor and delivery.

    It’s all about mindset. When you embrace and accept that not all are going to be understanding, you then look for the opportunities to teach. Especially with how our son ended up being born… we’d have had an unassisted home-birth even if I hadn’t planned on having one so all around no one can say I was careless for being prepared and responsible! 😀

    If we are capable of taking care of what we are capable of taking care of… (confusing??? LOL) then why spend the money, time, and energy, with the risks of unnecessary fear, tests, and complications? It sounds futile and exhausting. I promote going to the doctor when there is a need but I encourage all to take responsibility and be educated in all else while always listening to the instruction of the Holy Spirit. 🙂

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