|John-Mark D. Burkholder|
“I can feel that”, I told my obstetrician as he pricked the left side of my abdomen on December 11, 1992. I was on an operating table in an outdated birthing clinic in Bandung, Indonesia, prepped for a C-section. As with my first pregnancy, I had pre-eclampsia but this baby was also breech. The epidural, which had been a great success during my first C-section, wasn’t working so well this time. Finally, the doctor gave me a local anesthetic and began the procedure.
“What was that?” I gasped in my grogginess some time later. “Your anesthetic is wearing off. Breathe with me”, calmly stated my teammate, a nurse. Quickly, I was put under general anesthesia and woke to greet my new son, John-Mark.
Then a year later, I was pregnant again but at twelve weeks, and on my 31st birthday, I miscarried. During the night, I wept as I said goodbye to my third child. I didn’t know it then, but I would never conceive again.
According to the World Health Organization, about 830 women die from complications related to pregnancy or childbirth each day. “The majority of maternal deaths are due to hemorrhage, infection, unsafe abortion, and eclampsia (very high blood pressure leading to seizures), or from health complications worsened in pregnancy.“
In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world…So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them. Luke 2:1, 4-7
Know therefore that the Lord your God is God, the faithful God who keeps covenant and steadfast love with those who love him. Deuteronomy 7:9
Trust in him at all times, you people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge. Psalm 62:8
What promises of God can you trust today?