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“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you…”     (Jeremiah 1:5)

A phrase I hear often and yet have never really spent the time deliberating is ‘the miracle of birth’. With a fast growing number of pregnancies and babies around me, at times it can become rather monotonous. Having recently undertaken a four week midwifery placement, I have been drawn to consider the weight of that statement; ‘The MIRACLE of birth’. I’ll be honest, there is a great deal of blood sweat and tears involved in the process (and obviously I mean that quite literally) pain being very high on the list of what is involved in this so-called ‘miracle’, and yet… Women, proceed to endure this on a daily basis and not just once, but several times. I have experienced in those 4 weeks, almost every type of birth a woman could have and every single one of them have involved varying degrees of pain (Eve did not do her sisters any favours in the garden of Eden since this pain is yet another consequence of the fall…). So, why do we put ourselves through it, and why is THIS described as a miracle?

The human body amazes me, it really does. The intricacy of design is just perfect. Every so often I find myself a little overwhelmed by its perfection; my brain struggles to comprehend it. Pregnancy and childbirth falls into that category. A human being is grown, and its life is sustained from inside a woman. Going back a little further to the creation of that human, in very simple terms, an egg- teeny tiny egg, meets a sperm- a little tad-pole like thing,  they connect, they embed themselves in the wall of bit of muscle, and there is the beginning (the blueprint, if you like) of your human. 9 months later, the development process is complete and the woman begins to endure possibly the worst pain of her life with the one intention of pushing that baby out of her body and into a very different world than that human is used to.  There is a very complex process involved in labour that the body (in most cases) just seems to know what to do, naturally. Even if you haven’t yet been through childbirth, you’ll know what to do when you get there, because it’s natural, and your body coaches you though it (with a little help from the midwife…). A phrase I heard often in my 4 weeks of midwifery is ‘I can’t do it…’, but you can, because you have to and because your body is designed for it…!

I admit that at times I become rather blasé about the human body and more specifically about childbirth and babies since it and they are around me as a regular feature of my life. And yet, when I sit and think about it, the weight of that statement ‘the miracle of birth’ completely strikes me. God’s grace and love to us that he has given us such a gift, is shown very clearly through this. I know that the majority of my female friends, if asked, would say that they would love to get married and have children. Some even would go as far as to say that this is their ultimate life’s goal, their desire and their chosen ‘career’. It seems to be embedded into a woman’s heart to eagerly desire this. Why? Because it’s a beautiful gift and it is God’s design. I am no theologian, unlike my brother, I don’t gulp up commentaries and study the crazy clever texts that delve into the deep mysteries of biblical history. I wish I did, I wish I cared, but I don’t. All I can do is speak from what I see, the experiences I have, and see God in my daily life. I find that although Nursing is a massive slog for me, it is a place when I can regularly see God’s majestic hand on a broken world. Something that amazes me is his unconditional love for the people of this earth.

“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you…” (Jeremiah 1:5).The God of this universe knew and loved each and every one of us before we were even born, before HE formed us in the womb. We are a creation of God. He formed us. He put us there, in our mothers’ bellies. He knew us before we were born. He declared us sacred. He smiled down upon us as he made us living. That is the miracle. The fact that every living person on this earth was made alive by God astounds me. That he chose for me to be born. That he chose the person who lives 5 doors up from me, to be born. That he chose someone who lives 900 miles away, to be born. It astounds me. No one is a mistake. He has a plan for every single one of the people that he formed. That is the miracle.

‘The MIRACLE of birth’: It sure it that.

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