These are the words said to the virgin Mary by Gabriel the archangel when he told her she would be made pregnant by the Holy Spirit. To ninety year old Sarah, when told she would bear a child, it was asked, “Is anything too hard for YHWH?” So few today believe for the impossible. So few, that Yahshua despaired of finding faith on the earth when He returns (LUKE 18:8). Is faith like I wrote about love? We don’t really know what it is?
Sometimes Father puts us in a place where there is nothing we can do but depend on Him. Where, as we wait in faith, it seems like YHWH is the enemy. Sometimes we have to put everything on the line, even our lives or the lives of our children. As Job stated, “Though He slay me, yet will I trust in Him” (13:15). Sometimes we have to ask the Father, who is squeezing us so tightly, to please hold us tighter still. Sometimes when it’s taking every ounce of courage and humility to submit to the fire, we have to reach down deep and find yet more.
It is said He wants us broken vessels. But I can’t find that in the Bible. Strengthened and perfected I can find. David had a broken spirit, a broken and contrite heart in PSALM 51. This was conviction for his sin with Bathsheba. Broken sometimes sounds to me like having given up. The only thing we should give up on is trying to do it in our own strength. There should be a lot more conviction for sins after a thorough search to ascertain why we are put on trial.
It will help when in the crucible of suffering to look at the heroes of faith: Sarah who waited ninety years for a child and had given up: DON’T GIVE UP! A millenia and a half of conflict between Arabs and Jews was the ultimate result of that. Joseph in slavery and prison for twelve years. An antidote for his pride perhaps? Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego prepared to die in a furnace for what they believed. A test of their fidelity after having been in apostate Judah? Daniel was thrown to the lions. Some did die. It is believed Isayah the prophet was the hero of HEBREWS 11:37 sawn asunder. Yahshua Himself died. The apostles, one by one, but for John the beloved, all martyred. They had all run away when Yahshua was taken prisoner by the mob. Should we expect to be less honoured?
If we look the other way we see the results of those who doubted the Most High. Adam and Eve doubted His word, His one command to them. Result? The fall. Untold suffering by us, his children, for six millenia. Jacob and his mother, Rebecca, doubted he would receive the inheritance. Result? He was forced to run in fear from his brother, then work for another seven years for Rachel when his lie came back on him. The Israelites in the wilderness doubted YHWH. They got to wander in the wilderness another forty years, until they, the adults, were all dead.
On comparison the results of doubting are worse than the mustard seed of faith. Both can last generations or forever. James tells us he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed, and will receive nothing from YHWH (1:6-7). Pretty strong word: NOTHING.
The trial I am currently experiencing is about childbirth. Therefore I will teach some little known facts about the experience of giving birth and being born. Adam and Eve, by their doubt leading to disobedience, cursed themselves. Eve was cursed to bring forth children in sorrow. I cannot see why that meant any other women than herself, but it is taken to mean all women in childbirth. We get what we believe, even if it’s a lie.
Coming down some generations to the Israelites in Egypt, we find not only didn’t these Hebrew women have doctors, as women generally do today, they didn’t even need a midwife. Their births were quick and free of complications. Whether painful, it is not mentioned. Nowhere in the Bible is there a problem with birth apart from when Rachel died giving birth to Benjamin, and Phineas’ wife died giving birth to little Ichabod. In both instances there was sin involved: Rachel had stolen her father’s idols, and Phineas with his brother Hophni had profaned the Tabernacle. Almost all other births are considered great blessings. These Israelite wives gave birth so quickly, only their husbands, I assume, were on hand to catch their babies.
As a result of His stripes, or whipping, Yahshua took our griefs and sorrows (the very word used for Eve’s curse in childbirth) and healed us. To my understanding and that of others, we are completely healed by this, and prevented from getting sick. That is an element of faith. And without faith it is impossible to please YHWH: for he that cometh to YHWH must believe that He is (the healer of their sicknesses), and He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him. So saith the writer who lists those heroes of faith in HEBREWS 11. This healing and prevention includes the sorrows of childbirth. Redeemed, pain-free, and uncomplicated childbirth has been available since the Israelites were in Egypt, and it is receiving a resurgence in recent times.
My experience with redeemed childbirth started with Gabriel’s birth, though I knew about it at the time of Jed’s birth. Gabriel’s birth took place in a hospital and was not pain-free. The pain was as a result of calling Father cruel, like Job also did, while Jed was being born. Father was not cruel at all. My sins against Philip were what were cruel. So I was tested with pain for Gabriel’s birth. I didn’t again call Father cruel. What I did receive was such an amazing birth I wanted to go back THE NEXT DAY AND HAVE TWINS!
For the next sixteen years I prayed for these twins and more babies. I saw them in the trance dream in which I went to Heaven. (See post: Sell All You Have and Follow me.) I named them, as Father pointed out in the dream. For sixteen years Father withheld them from me. I know Satan stole some of them. He has been commanded to give back seven times as many, according to Scripture–the amount the thief must repay. During that time I divorced Philip and married Anthony. Our marriage was partly based on a sign, given by Father, that we would have children together. The sign had to do with blood group compatibility. Aside from that we both desired more children when we married. We were both 46. But so what? All things are possible with YHWH.
Five years later, and you know if you read my post And the Two Shall Become One Flesh, what happened. We separated. After five years of disappointments, I had finally given the matter of conceiving into Father’s hands, because it had never worked when I tried to make it happen. One thing I did do was, about three and a half years into our marriage, when it was become a very fiery trial indeed, step out in faith. I started buying baby clothes and other necessities. Because I had wanted twin girls, I only bought girl clothes. If one is going to step out in faith, one might as well go the whole hog. After all, what did I have to lose? One day Anthony opened that bottom drawer and wanted to know why it was full of baby clothes.
Four months after our separation, having had no symptoms at all but a bit of nausea which I attributed to driving down our winding, rollercoaster-like, mountain road, I started to feel movements inside and hardly dared hope. After another couple of weeks I was pretty sure, especially when I started to develop a baby bump. I decided not to tell anyone until Anthony found out. But I couldn’t tell him and remain obedient. Somehow Father would have to tell him.
Because I wear fairly loose clothes, nobody noticed my burgeoning belly. I expected Gabriel to ask me why I was getting fat, but he didn’t. Then I grew out of all my jeans and long pants, still nobody noticed. There had to be a cutoff point, I thought, before someone who was not in my family said something and my children became upset because I did not tell them first. I decided it would be when Jed came down for a week’s holiday. By that time I was almost six months pregnant. Gabriel and I went to pick up Jed at the airport, and I told them on the way home. Initially they thought I was joking, but they accepted the news graciously. We texted Ranyhyn. She texted back that I was delusional. Maybe I am.
Gradually I shared the news with friends, family, and others. Most were as pleased as I was. Not long after however there were two unsettling incidents. Two ladies in the church I attended both began advising about how we should have common sense in case something happens. It was never made clear what this ‘something’ might be, but I really, in their opinion, should see a doctor or obtain a midwife. Actually, in the Bible there’s not always a lot of ‘common sense’ either. It says YHWH has chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and YHWH has chosen the weak things to confound the mighty (I COR. 127). Let’s face it, if Father had been sensible, He would never have humbled Himself so low as to become initially two cells in a woman’s womb, a helpless baby who grew into a man, and finally allowed Himself to be crucified on a wooden cross.
Up to seventeen years previous to my present joy, I had decided never to have another hospital birth. With this was not to go to a doctor, have a scan, or any other medical intervention. So long as Father has examined me and known me (PSA. 139:1), I needed no man’s hands to do so. My full plan was to have home births with not even a midwife present, solely my husband in attendance as it was with the ancient Hebrew women. This is not as uncommon as one would think. A friend who was due near the time I was, planned and had the same situation in early September. Her husband alone was there and caught their baby. Then another friend said he knew of a woman who recently planned and did the same thing. Anthony always knew, from when we were married, of my intentions. He was cautiously agreeable, at least to the home birth without medical intervention. I never told him I wanted him to be the ONLY OTHER PERSON there, but prayed the births would be so quick he wouldn’t have time to stress out about it.
The other incident concerned a friend whom I had asked to be at the births as it appeared Anthony may not be present. She turned up one day saying she did not believe I was pregnant. My belly was either full of phantoms or a tumour. Imagine the battle in my mind that ensued from these negative reactions. Other people from my old church had the same idea about me having a phantom pregnancy because I was so small. Never mind that I didn’t even show with Ranyhyn until I was six months. With Gabriel, when I went to the hospital in labour, I asked the midwife where he was hiding because my belly was so flat. All of my babies have been between 7 lb 6 oz and 8 lb 10 oz. These people believe the reason why I refuse an ultrasound and doctor’s examination is because I am not really pregnant and don’t want to see the truth. The truth is, my plans which did not include these interventions, were made up to seventeen years ago. Also, ultrasound examinations are not without their dangers.
The phantom pregnancy attack on my mind continued until I was past forty weeks. I finally beat that one when visiting another friend one day. While there I had an extremely strong, painless contraction. My friend felt the tightness of my abdomen and asked. “Have these people who are saying you have a phantom pregnancy felt your belly like this?” No they hadn’t, because I had allowed no one to touch me. My husband is the only person I allow to do that.
Anthony would have found out I was pregnant at about eight months. I ran into two people we both knew. One was our best man and his best friend since high school. The other was his next door neighbour aunty. They most certainly would have seen I was pregnant. There was no immediate response. Today I wish above all that I had waited until I knew Anthony knew to tell ANYONE I was pregnant. Just to honour him. Father can close people’s eyes to anything until He wants them opened. But we can’t go back or even look back. Pillar of salt!
I reached the forty week mark expecting to have new babies. At the forty-third week my two wonderful friends came around when I had a long series of strong contractions. We all thought it was time. The contractions stopped after six hours. This false labour happened several times. We were not worried because I had been born three weeks past the accepted ‘due’ date of forty weeks. Two of my babies were born at forty-two weeks, both induced. Then forty-four weeks passed, forty-five… Yes, I still feel movements, and oddly, I stopped gaining weight at forty weeks. We were comforted by John Paul Jackson’s story at www.theperfectstorm.com . He was eleven months in his mother’s womb. She was told this would happen by an angel before John Paul was conceived, because he was called to be an eleventh-hour prophet of the endtimes.
To alleviate my fears and illustrate His omnipotence, Father asked me one day a series of questions: “Who made your womb?” “Who made the babies in your womb?” “Did I need Anthony’s sperm to make these babies?” (The virgin Mary needed no man’s sperm to conceive Yahshua in her womb.) “Did I need your womb to make these babies?” (Adam and Eve were created without using a mother’s womb.) “How long can I keep these babies alive in your womb?” As long as He wants. Anyway, like Abraham and like with Jed, I have to give them up to YHWH.
During this time I cleaned out my pipeline. Unconfessed sin clogs up our spiritual pipeline through which YHWH pours down His blessings upon us from Heaven. I didn’t even know I had unconfessed sin until I was in the crucible of suffering. Father turns up the heat so we are forced to deal with issues we refuse to see when the path is smooth and carefree. This is when I discovered my fears had stolen my sons from their father, Philip, and stolen my sons’ father from them. I also found out I had been deceived about marrying Anthony. There were many other sins, many fears: that my babies would die, that the placenta would wear out. I feared the opinions of people, from my mountain to the other side of the world, about doing something so dangerous without going to a hospital for an induction.
I cried, begged, pleaded, and prayed. I gave everything to Father. He was faithful, as stated in His Word, and delivered me from all my fears (PSA. 34:4).
One day recently I asked Him for a little hint about the situation. A few minutes later I received a fright to find a spider on my shoulder. I screamed, throwing it off. As I chased the spider across the floor, Father asked me, “Do you trust Me, Debra?”
I had to admit I didn’t. I trust Him to a point, but my faith is not perfect. And I so want perfect faith. It appears that this trial is about perfecting my faith. A faith that does not care so much if I live or die, or if my children live or die, but that we are in the hands of the One Who Is perfect love, and that He works all things together for good to them that love Him and are called according to His purpose (ROM. 8:28).
Today I went to see Anthony. Not to contact him, just to catch a glimpse of him. I wondered if he looks older, softer, harder, better, worse. I sat to have lunch in a coffee shop near where he works. He drives past there when he leaves work each day. It was worth more to me than a million dollars, that glimpse. And I didn’t even see his face. He drove very quickly and put up his arm to rub his head just as he passed. But it kept me going all the rest of the day.
Later at home I sat thinking about how much I miss Anthony. You know that aching sort of feeling you get in your chest when you love someone? Father said, “That’s how I feel about you.” My whole attention shifted at that. To Yahshua. I’ll be content with Him alone for now, for as long as it takes. Until my Anthony comes home to our heart.
When I met Anthony he was down on Himself. I think I fell in love with him because he needed to be loved. He said when he saw me climbing at Kangaroo Point one day I looked so hot he despaired of me ever being interested in him. As we grew to know each other, he remarked I said nicer things to him than any woman he had ever met. It built up his confidence he was valuable, and worth loving. But when we got married and my screaming started, it undermined that confidence and made him feel worthless again. Just as his mother had made him feel as a boy. Eventually he reasoned, I must not really love him or I would obey him and treat him with respect, as a man needs to be treated. If I didn’t really love him, then I must have married him for some other reason. That’s when he believed the lie about me marrying him for his stuff. In his mind there just had to be an alternate explanation. He didn’t want a wife who was just hanging around until he died and inherited all he had worked so hard for. That’s why he set about getting me out of his life.
I’ve got to say I’m guilty of loving Anthony imperfectly. Not that I wanted his stuff. I know, we’re all imperfect. But I hope one day Father and Anthony give me another chance. And soon, before our babies are born. Maybe they are waiting for their daddy to come home. To catch them in his great strong hands when they’re born.