As I’m pregnant for the 5th time and expecting baby #4 in July I hadn’t really thought much about how I was going to prepare for this birth. With Tonchi (the first) I read lots of books, went to childbirth classes, watched videos and read anything I could get my hands on. I reviewed a few books and the childbirth classes with Koa (#2) and with Aisling I didn’t do much at all.
Each of these births were at home, some in the water, and some not, but all with an awesome midwife who has served our family in amazing ways! Her faith in Christ encourages us and her prayers for me while in the throes of labor was so encouraging and what I needed to hear! I never could have had three home births with out firstly, my amazing hubby or without her and her team.
So this time around I hadn’t given it much though as to what preparation I needed to do… then I entered a drawing for a book called[amazon_link id=”1462723756″ target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ] Redeeming Childbirth[/amazon_link]. It looked interesting and looked like it covered some topics I thought I would be interested in. I didn’t think much of it, when I didn’t hear back that I’d won… but I was super excited when Angie (the author) contacted me and asked if I would read the book and write a review for the blog!
I was ecstatic! I was going to get to read it after all and what more of a perfect time as I’m preparing for the birth of another precious baby! Boy was I in for a surprise… this is no ordinary book on birthing babies! This is an amazing life changing book on childbirth and how we as woman can glorify God in all areas of our lives, even in each part of childbirth!
She starts off talking about how there is so much disunity among women on the topic of childbirth. There are basically two camps… those who go all natural and others who opt for all that medicine can offer to dull the pain and minimize the hard part of labor. AND…. we as women have STRONG opinions about each camp.
We are usually in one or the other and act very judgmentally towards the others. That is not God’s desire for us. He desires unity especially among mothers desiring to start and raise families to be heirs of Christ and arrows of light into the world. Angie calls us to drop it, reconcile and become one in Christ. With this calling and encouragement and conviction she starts off this amazing work! What a great way to filter all that she says knowing that her one desire is to bring God glory in her writing and draw women together in a desire to birth their babies and start families that glorify Him!
This quote from page 18 is long, but it voices exactly what I was trying to describe and which is why she is the writer of the book and I’m not! I found this so convicting… I see the judgement towards others in my own heart…
“In the spirit of unity, let us come together under one head- which is Christ-to be a better example of Christ’s love for the world. Let’s approach birth from a different perspective. Let’s rise up, Church, unified, and seek to embrace God’s design of “womb-man.” Let’s surrender to the Lord and receive His blessing that is found in the mission of birth and the gift of children. Let’s uplift one another, not judge. Let’s pray together for the Lord to convict our hearts in areas where we have been judgmental and ugly. Let’s ask God to help us trust that He made our bodies for the purpose of bringing forth life, and ask Him to renew our minds and our perspectives on pregnancy, birth, pain, and the gift of motherhood. Let’s rise up and make a difference in this next generation together. Let’s lead together, in love and unity, toward a movement of women in the church proposing to invite Jesus into all areas, events, and experiences in our lives. We are all sisters in this body. Let’s work together and embrace that we share this amazing blessing that is the gift of childbirth.” page 18
Another of my favorite portions of the book was the chapter/section on the pain of childbirth whether you choose to have a medicated or natural birth there is still some pain involved. I must say that with my 2nd and 3rd born and with this pregnancy when I first found out, I was super excited, but then my second thought is “Oh no! I have to go through labor again”.
“We need to be careful not to make an idol out of natural childbirth or being strong enough to endure the pain, but rather only seek to praise Him, glorify Him, magnify Him, and allow the
work of the Holy Spirit to be done in our lives and those who witness our births. Our lives are not just about us, they are about Him.” page 147
I just love how this book is Gospel infused and is so encouraging and convicting at the same time.
After reading this book I didn’t leaving feeling guilty, but inspired, encouraged and hopeful that this birth can be different and more honoring to God! I’m so excited to have a refreshing perspective to alter the course of this season of my life!
This post has already gotten long, but just one last comment. God has been convicting me more and more of the need for “praying continually” (I Thessalonians 5:17 ), and this book only encouraged this and spurred me on all the more. Angie spends about 20 pages towards the end of the book focusing on the importance of prayer, through the pregnancy, during the birth and for the rest of our lives!
“Prayerlessness means you are either depending on yourself (Genesis 4:25-26), you don’t have the conviction that God is worthy of your time, or you just don’t know how to pray. I realized that by not praying, I was subconsciously and arrogantly acting in my own sufficiency and not recognizing my deep need to call upon the Lord and follow His will. I was relying on my own wisdom to make the right decisions and my strength to have control over circumstances.” page 227
This portion was so encouraging to me to press on and to press into God. Yes in the pregnancy, but there is so much more. Praying for this little one yet to be met, prayers for their growth and safety, salvation, prayers for the labor, for those who will be involved, for my husband, that it would be a witness for Christ, any fears that may arise, complications that are concerning and so much more.
This portion is such a treasure and so convicting. Prayer is a discipline, but it becomes a treasure!
I can’t say enough about this book! I definitely recommend it to ALL who are pregnant, hope to get pregnant soon, or recently were pregnant. I hope one day to be able to give this as shower gifts to friends and family. This is truly a treasure! Thanks, Angie, for the opportunity to read this book and to God be the glory!