19 Bible Verses for Pregnancy and Labor

While I was pregnant, I made this list of scriptures that I would read and pray over whenever I was feeling anxious or overwhelmed. I also planned on using them during my labor to help calm and relax me. It turns out I was too tired and delirious during labor to look at them, although I’m sure it would have helped, had I not gone into labor at 10 pm and been unable to sleep  once it had started.

Hopefully they can bring strength and comfort to you as well.19 Scriptures for Pregnancy and Labor

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
(Philippians 4:6, 7 NIV)

For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.
(Psalm 139:13-16 NIV)

All who confess that Jesus is the Son of God have God living in them, and they live in God. We know how much God loves us, and we have put our trust in his love. God is love, and all who live in love live in God, and God lives in them. Such love has no fear, because perfect love expels all fear.
(1 John 4:15, 16, 18 NLT)

God’s Spirit doesn’t make cowards out of us. The Spirit gives us power, love, and self-control.
(2 Timothy 1:7 CEV)

I give you peace, the kind of peace only I can give. It isn’t like the peace this world can give. So don’t be worried or afraid.
(John 14:27 CEV)

Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.
(Isaiah 41:10 NLT)

You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you! Trust in the Lord always, for the Lord God is the eternal Rock.
(Isaiah 26:3, 4 NLT)

Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.
(1 Peter 5:7 NLT)

Yet what we suffer now is nothing compared to the glory he will reveal to us later.
(Romans 8:18 NLT)

So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most.
(Hebrews 4:16 NLT)

I love you, Lord; you are my strength.
(Psalms 18:1 NLT)

O Lord, you alone are my hope. I’ve trusted you, O Lord, from childhood. Yes, you have been with me from birth; from my mother’s womb you have cared for me. No wonder I am always praising you! My life is an example to many, because you have been my strength and protection. That is why I can never stop praising you; I declare your glory all day long.
(Psalms 71:5-8 NLT)

For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.
(Philippians 4:13 NLT)

The Lord gives his people strength. The Lord blesses them with peace.
(Psalms 29:11 NLT)

As soon as I pray, you answer me; you encourage me by giving me strength.
(Psalms 138:3 NLT)

I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit.
(Ephesians 3:16 NLT)

The Lord is my strength and my song; he has given me victory. This is my God, and I will praise him— my father’s God, and I will exalt him!
(Exodus 15:2 NLT)

See, God has come to save me. I will trust in him and not be afraid. The Lord God is my strength and my song; he has given me victory.”
(Isaiah 12:2 NLT)

This is what the Sovereign Lord, the Holy One of Israel, says:
“In repentance and rest is your salvation,
in quietness and trust is your strength…
(Isaiah 30:15 NIV)

 

The Baby Who Would Not Sleep

I’m so blessed to be the mother of a happy, healthy, beautiful baby girl. Sometimes, like today, I get frustrated by the little things. Lily won’t sleep in her crib. She hasn’t been sleeping in her crib since she was four months old, though occasionally I can get her to stay asleep when I set her down. Josh is much better at that than I am. I think his height helps him. So lately I’ve been trying to get her to go to sleep when she’s already in her crib.

It’s not working.

Mostly it involves putting her in her crib when she’s sleepy, then she stands up, I lay her down, she stands up. This continues until I give in and sit on the floor and watch her play in her crib for a while. I do the laying down and standing up game again. I rock her. I nurse her. I try putting her down in her crib and we start all over again.

It ends when either she finally sleeps in the crib (which has only happened once), or I just let her sleep in my arms or on my bed. She’s sleeping in my arms right now. And even though I wasn’t able to get her to sleep, and she won the battle of wills again, I win too. I know I won’t get to hold this precious girl in my arms very long, and I treasure this time. So sleep little angel, I’ll snuggle you if that’s how you like to sleep.

6 months

It has been a long time since I have posted, but I have the very best of excuses. I have spent the last six months enthralled with my baby girl. Lily is a wonderful baby, happy almost all the time, with the cutest dimples you have ever seen. To be honest, she is the most beautiful baby I have ever seen, though you might just think I’m biased.

I am so thrilled to finally be a mother. After I was married, it was as if my life before marriage faded away, and my married life was the beginning of my real life. Now, after having a baby, I have a similar feeling. The life that I had before she was born was wonderful, but I feel alive in a new way now.

If I can ask one thing of my readers, please do not believe the lie that women need to become more like men in order to be a success. Women are more powerful in being women – creating life inside our bodies, and nurturing life once it is born, shaping the future of humanity with loving hearts and service – than we are in becoming power-suit CEOs. I support and desire women to be CEOs and anything else they are gifted to do, but I have discovered something wonderful. God gave women a gift in being mothers, and motherhood needs to receive more respect. It is truly a blessing to be a mother, and no one should disparage that. So please, don’t buy the lie that any child is an inconvenience to be aborted.

I am just so thrilled to watch Lily grow and develop each day. Most recently, she has started sitting and eating food. What a cutey.

Banff

After Josh had finished his work in Calgary (which is a wonderful city – I enjoyed my stay there) we drove to Banff National Park to spend a few days in September. This was the last trip for me before the baby comes, and we had a wonderful time.

We stayed in the Fairmont Banff Springs, the historical and gorgeous hotel in Banff. Our room was way up in one of the turrets, with little windows looking out in about 180 degrees. We loved the whirlpool bath as well – wonderful for a pregnant woman at the end of a day of walking.

Our activities were limited by my pregnancy, and unfortunately we were not able to go to the hot springs, but we did take the gondola to the top of Sulphur Mountain. From the top the views are wonderful, and we managed to do the 1km hike over to the old Cosmic Ray Station. I just had to stop on some of the benches along the way to rest.IMG_1942

We explored the roads around Banff, taking side trips along the golf course road and up to nearby lakes. It was all gorgeous. What a wonderful place to visit and explore. My dad grew up coming to Banff regularly and climbing the mountains around here. It would be wonderful to live so near to somewhere so beautiful!

DSC_2903On the next day we ventured from Banff to Lake Louise, as was highly recommended to us. The drive there didn’t take very long over the Trans-Canada Highway. We went to the Lake Louise Gondola first, riding up the ski lift to the nature center about halfway up the mountain. There are bears sighted regularly here, but we didn’t see any except for the stuffed ones at the nature center. We did see a deer foraging, but that was the extent of our wildlife spotting. The view from the top here was also very beautiful. All of the views in Banff National Park are breathtaking – basically we just enjoyed God’s wonders in every direction as far as the eye could see. Awesome.

After the gondola and a forgettable but cheap lunch at the ski-lodge, we went to Lake Louise (there is another Fairmont hotel located directly on the lake). The lake is a beautiful icy blue color, glacier fed and full of minerals. The water is very cold, but the sun was quite warm. We almost rented a canoe to go out on the lake, but decided it was too hot to manage. Instead, we walked through the woods for a little while around the circumference of the lake. If we return again when I am not pregnant, I want to hike up to the Tea House. The hike was too long for me to manage on this trip though.

DSC_2960Lake Louise was very crowded, so we stayed for a little while, then drove on to Lake Moraine. It is another glacier fed lake. It was very beautiful, and I soaked my feet for a little while in the cold water. I was tired out, so we didn’t even try any walks around at this lake, we just sat and enjoyed the view for a little while, then drove the scenic road back to our hotel.

I highly recommend visiting Banff National Park. I think that everyone could find something to do in such a wonderful place, and as I demonstrated in my visit, you don’t have to go hiking if that is too much physical activity for you. You can go and enjoy beauty from your car, and out the windows of many restaurants. Breathe deep and rest in the natural world.

Royal Tyrrell Museum in Drumheller, Alberta

I traveled with Josh to Calgary, Alberta and spent one of the days there at the Royal Tyrrell Museum in Drumheller. I had been to this museum before, when I was young and lived in Alberta. It is one of the best dinosaur museums in the world, and you will find all of the “classic” dinosaurs on display here. They also have very good exhibits of other fossils as well. I really enjoyed my visit, and I am looking forward to someday bringing my children here to see the dinosaurs as well.

California and Highway 1

DSC_2432In the middle of August, Josh and I flew to California for a friend’s wedding and made a little bit of a vacation out of our trip after the wedding festivities.

The wedding was just outside of the San Francisco area, near Mount Diablo. On a free morning before the wedding, Josh and I drove up Mount Diablo and enjoyed the scenic views from the summit. It seemed like a popular mountain to bike on, and I was very impressed with all of those in-shape bicyclists. It looked like a really hard ride.

DSC_2439There were some enormous pine cones on some of the pine trees, you can see the size beside Josh’s hand.

DSC_2517After our friends were married, we spent a few days and drove down to Monterey on Highway 1. The weather was really foggy and rainy for most of the drive, unfortunately, but there was sun at the beginning and end of our trip.

We stopped at some sort of bunker, but we never figured out what it was. The views were very nice from there, though.

DSC_2513DSC_2530bwThe next time we stopped it was at a lighthouse on Pigeon Point. We didn’t see any pigeons, but we did see some seals on the rocks below the lighthouse.

And on we drove to Monterey. The sun was shining and beautiful in the bay, and the sun seekers were out in droves. We walked out onto the pier and had lunch at a seafood restaurant. Then we walked around for a little while before heading back to the car and to our hotel.

At our hotel, the parking lot was jammed full of fancy collectable cars. It was quite the car show, just trying to find a space. There was a car auction going on and the hotel stayed very busy while we were there.

DSC_2549The next day we visited the Monterey Bay Aquarium, which is a very nice aquarium. We enjoyed the different shows that they had for feedings. One that was especially fun to watch involved a whole school of sardines. They were very fast, swirling around and around until all the food was gone, then they returned to their hiding hole to avoid predators.

I hope you browse all of my pictures below. Enjoy!

Valley Forge

Continued from Philadelphia Part 1, and Philadelphia Part 2

IMG_1751When the golf tournament started, we moved out of Philadelphia and into a smaller town right beside Valley Forge National Historical Park. Of course Donna and I had to go visit it, and it is a very nice area. We drove through the park, stopping at the different monuments. We also toured through the house were George Washington stayed after the soldiers had built their cabins for the winter.

One of the highlights of the park was the Washington Memorial Chapel. It is a very beautiful church, and I found it very interesting with all the American symbols and soldier carvings.

IMG_1790We spent more time exploring and shopping around this area of Pennsylvania, and it is very beautiful. I love the winding roads and the gorgeous houses that all look like they are in the woods. We found an awesome tea shop in Wayne, PA called A Taste of Britain. Definitely go there if you have the opportunity. Delicious scones and very reasonably priced high tea service.

Continued from Philadelphia Part 1, and Philadelphia Part 2