If the enemy comes to steal, kill, and destroy, and Christ comes so that we may have life and life to the full, birth and reproduction are the Lord's lasting reproval of the curse. Generation after generation, bodies are pushed out from one another laboriously and excruciatingly, then kept alive amidst error and grace and sacrifice.
I think about what David and I are doing in bringing a child into our lives. I regret none of what we have chosen, and -- it is so hard! A full workweek on 4 hours of interrupted sleep each night. Tears shed in transit as we are separated for the first time. Incoherent maternal grief at the knowledge that she eats less and is more agitated at night following our days apart -- at times I feel impossibly young and foolish in the face of this task. How do we, imperfect parents, help and not harm our daughter, love her well?
But the Lord says he believes in me. He has confidence in the work of his hands and he is assured that I am prepared to do the work he ordained.
Birth and the life that follows are rebukes in the face of the enemy: somehow, creation continues. Every birth is God's invitation for humanity to partner with him in bearing forth life, in participating in creation, in loving through sacrifice. I think we've faltered before him many times, but in testament to his belief that his ways will triumph, his design of us will hold, his invitation is issued anew with every generation. You can do this. You can join me, he says, in creating and nurturing life. I see my resemblance in you.
He invites again and again, speaking louder than my mumbled insecurities, than intermittent threats of the enemy. There is always someone being born.