Thursday, September 3, 2015

Birthin' Babies

In the movie "Gone With The Wind" Prissy spouts off the famous line, "I don't know nothin' 'bout birthin' babies, Miz Scarlett."  Well, unlike Prissy, I do know something about that.

In addition to giving birth to three daughters I spent 19 years teaching childbirth education classes.  It was the best job I ever had as I got to share in such joyous times with so many couples.

Birth is usually full of joy.  But labor--well, it's called labor for a reason.  It's hours of hard work and usually involves pain (though in our classes we always like to euphemistically call it 'discomfort'.)  When I was getting ready to leave for Colombia last May, my daughter, who is an obstetrician, said she's learned some Spanish to use with her patients.  "The words I use most," she said, "are the Spanish words for 'push' and 'harder'.

If they are honest, most mothers, at some point in their labor wonder what they were thinking and vow to never do this again.  But when that beautiful-to-you (no matter how wrinkled, screeching, contorted) baby is placed in your arms, you tend to forget a lot of the work that went into it.

That's how I feel each year as I anticipate another Operation Christmas Child packing party.  I get tired of the labor and the wondering and the details.  I find myself muttering under my breath, "This is the last year I'm ever doing this."

But, I know, at the end of the day on September 19th I will stare in awe again at all God has done.  My heart will soar for joy at being part of seeing Him once again do what I know only He could do.
And, for that joy, I will be hooked again for another year.

And while I wait for that day--the day when my 'babies' are all neatly tucked into their cartons on trucks that are ready to roll--I'm thinking of what they will mean for the children and families who will receive them.

The picture above is what a crowd of 25,000 looks like.  Just picture each of those as a child holding a 'gospel opportunity' in a simple shoebox to show him or her God's love.  It's a pretty amazing sight and worth the labor to get those boxes into their hands.

Because our faithful God, who knows everything 'bout birthin' babies, is going to be birthing many new lives into His kingdom because of our labor.

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