Childbirth for women is often taken on with dread or, at the least, trepidation.
Childbirth for men requires empathy, compassion, and nerves of steel.
Childbirth may come with struggle, joys, and/or sorrows. One need not experience childbirth to understand all of this.
Creation itself groans, presently, in childbirth. It waits, we wait for the pain to end and the joy to dawn. Natural disasters, family drama, crisis and struggle come on the creation and on us like contractions, like waves of pain and suffering. Creation groans, the earth quakes, erosion continues, and species become extinct. We groan, through the Spirit, when life is difficult and we have no energy of our own left.
The pains of childbirth, while unpleasant are like so many things that we go through in life that are painful. They make the gift of a child so much sweeter, so much brighter, because the pain has passed and new life has arrived. Through childbirth, or the struggle of adoption papers, or the difficult struggle with infertility, God teaches us the strength He pours into us, through Christ, that we never knew we had.
During Lent we are reminded of the great suffering of Christ. Christ had reason to groan in Pilate’s courtyard, along the road to Calvary, on the cross of His crucifixion. His groans relieve ours. Creation groans, we groan, but our burden is lifted onto the cross with Christ. We are reminded by the cross that this world is temporary, our suffering, our burdens, our struggle, is temporary and like a baby rushing out of the womb, someday this world will end and a new one, a better one, a perfect one will emerge. Our groaning, the creation’s groans, are turned to shouts of joy and praise.
Praise and thank our Creator, who hears our groaning and fills us with His Grace, Peace, and Truth.