Jesus’ birth story was radical in so many ways, and as I read it again this Christmas, I became so aware of the hope His story can bring to our own birth stories.
Cuz here’s the thing…
The birth of Jesus was totally supernatural!
A virgin getting pregnant
An angel talking to Mary
The Lord visiting Joseph in a dream
John the Baptist leaping in the womb in the presence of Jesus in the womb
A star over the place Jesus was born that led wise men from the East to find him and worship him
A heavenly host of angels singing and announcing the birth to shepherds nearby
I love all of this! I love all the supernatural ways God the Father showed up in this pregnancy and birth. I mean, can you imagine even having one of these scenarios happen at your birth? How amazing would that be?
And yet, here’s the other thing…
Even though his birth was totally supernatural, it wasn’t the ideal birth scenario at all. In fact, it was far from it.
No hospital, no birth center, no homebirth option, and not even a room to give birth in
No skilled and encouraging birth team to assist Mary and Joseph though it
No cozy blankets, no shower, no bath, no comfort food, no coconut water, no birth ball, no worship set to listen to, no heating pad, no ice chips
Instead, Mary and Joseph found themselves delivering their baby alone, in the cold, in a dirty manger with animals, cow dung, bad smells, and lots of dirt and germs.
I can’t imagine what that would feel like. Stuck out in the cold with my newborn baby, trying to make him a bed in an animal feeding trough.
No, it wasn’t the ideal birth that every mother dreams of. But God was in it and it was beautifully supernatural and glorious at the same time.
And I find so much hope in that!
So often in our culture we get all caught up in planning for the perfect birth. Dreaming of our perfect birth. Worrying about all the details not falling into place perfectly.
But Jesus’ birth shows us that it doesn’t have to be a perfect or ideal birth scenario to be wonderful and supernatural and infused with God’s fingerprints all over it.
So take heart, Mama! If things aren’t panning out the way you had dreamed, take hope in Jesus’ birth story. It doesn’t mean that everything is ruined or that God isn’t in it.
Maybe you don’t get to deliver at the place you wanted to, but maybe a heavenly host of angels will show up instead.
Maybe you didn’t get the midwife or doctor you wanted, but maybe God himself will coach you through your labor and whisper the instructions and encouragement you need.
You just never know!
What I do know is that God loves birth. And He loves showing up at births. And He might surprise you in the way He shows up at yours! So be open and expectant for how He’s going to meet you.
There’s a lot of talk these days about “Supernatural Childbirth” and usually people use that term to mean “pain-free” birth. I love books like Supernatural Childbirth and the wonderful testimonies in it of pain-free labors. But I don’t like seeing “Supernatural Childbirth” put in the box of “pain-free.”
Was Jesus’ birth pain-free? I don’t know. But was it supernatural? Absolutely! Supernatural can mean so much more than pain-free, so go in expectant and excited for all the supernatural ways God will show up at yours!
As I look at Jesus’ birth, I’m reminded that life isn’t about perfect circumstances, but perfect communion with God. From birth to death, Jesus experienced imperfect circumstances. But He maintained perfect communion with God through it all and that’s what set his life apart. That connection with His Dad was his source of constant joy, strength, peace, power, love, and so much more.
I find so much hope in that today. For in the middle of imperfect circumstances that I can’t change, I CAN focus on my communion and relationship with God. And THAT will make all the difference. That’s the life Jesus modeled and that’s where true life is found.
Thank you Jesus for coming in such a beautiful, humble, less-than-ideal, supernatural way! You are amazing. We love you and we invite you to show up in glorious, supernatural ways at our births!
Photo Credit: Flickr
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