The Things We Say
Being in, but not of, the world.

Birth & Pain

No, this isn't a post about women giving birth, but rather about a way God has used childbirth to illustrate his hand in our lives. This is one of my favorite passages in the Bible and I found it in a children's Bible my daughter had, which turned out to be a New Century translation.

Isaiah 66:7-9 (NCV)
"A woman does not give birth before she feels the pain; she does not give birth to a son before the pain starts. [8] No one has ever heard of that happening; no one has ever seen that happen. In the same way no one ever saw a country begin in one day; no one has ever heard of a new nation beginning in one moment. But Jerusalem will give birth to her children just as soon as she feels the birth pains. [9] In the same way I will not cause pain without allowing something new to be born," says the Lord. "If I cause you the pain, I will not stop you from giving birth to your new nation," says your God.

This tells me that when it is God's hand on us that is causing pain it is for a purpose and life will come from it, and that life will come quickly. This is exciting to me.

Change is a part of God's hand on us. Sometimes it is incredible and amazing. Sometimes it is painful. Sometimes he brings healing and deliverance and provision. Sometimes he brings pruning and discipline. Sometimes he gives, sometimes he takes away.

Ecclesiastes 3:1-8
There is a time for everything,
   and a season for every activity under the heavens:
2 a time to be born and a time to die,
   a time to plant and a time to uproot,
 3 a time to kill and a time to heal,
   a time to tear down and a time to build,
 4 a time to weep and a time to laugh,
   a time to mourn and a time to dance,
 5 a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
   a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
 6 a time to search and a time to give up,
   a time to keep and a time to throw away,
 7 a time to tear and a time to mend,
   a time to be silent and a time to speak,
 8 a time to love and a time to hate,
   a time for war and a time for peace.

In all of this his thoughts toward us are good.

Jeremiah 29:11-12
11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. 12 Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13 You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.

One area of our lives that may contain pain is growth and maturity. We can't grow into something new without leaving the old. And many times we don't want to leave the old. It has become precious to us.

Luke 5:36-39
36 He told them this parable: “No one tears a piece out of a new garment to patch an old one. Otherwise, they will have torn the new garment, and the patch from the new will not match the old. 37 And no one pours new wine into old wineskins. Otherwise, the new wine will burst the skins; the wine will run out and the wineskins will be ruined. 38 No, new wine must be poured into new wineskins. 39 And no one after drinking old wine wants the new, for they say, ‘The old is better.’”

I wrote a song years ago. Here are the lyrics.

Morning comes only after resurrection
Resurrection follows death
And death is never very easy
Oh, the tears I've cried
And fears my heart has felt
But Jesus took them all upon himself

First fruits always seem the sweetest to enjoy
But there's still more fruit to come
And how my soul often travails for the Son
Growing up has always
Make me want to hide
But Father gives me peace and joy inside

So, let the growing come
Peace, be still, and know your God
And, when the tears come
Count them as the morning dew
That heralds forth the coming of the sun

So I reckon that the present sufferings
Are really nothing when compared
To all the glory that awaits the bride
Saints that die to self are precious in His sight
Perfection is the purpose of my life

God's hand on us is for our good. If he causes us pain he will not stop us from bringing forth life and it will come quickly. Have faith, and find your rest in God.


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