The following is an excerpt from ‘God’s Plan for Pregnancy: From Conception to Childbirth and Beyond!‘ by Nerida Walker. You can also get the Kindle Edition for your kindle. The following are notes that I want to read over again and declare over my pregnancy and labour experience. Hope the words will speak life into you too. 🙂
“But reject profane and old wives’ fables, and exercise yourself toward godliness.” 1 Timothy 4:7
Do not pay attention to old wives’ tales, myths, folklore or anything contrary to God’s Word. There will always be someone willing to share horror stories about their own pregnancy and childbearing experiences, or of terrible things that happened to someone they know. It is easy when we hear of bad experiences and become overwhelmed with fear, imagining the same things happening to us. But don’t allow other peoples’ opinions and experiences or own past experience affect the outcome. Declare what you want to have happen, not what anyone says might happen.
Many women prepare themselves physically and emotionally through exercise and childbirth classes, but it’s also important to prepare spiritually. During your pregnancy, focus on what God’s Word says and listen only to positive testimonies. Your faith will grow through hearing the Word.
If you face morning sickness, heartburn or backaches during your pregnancy, exercise authority in the name of Jesus to overcome these areas as well. Walk by faith as a lifestyle rather than rely on exercising faith for an emergency or a one-time event.
“For bodily exercise profits a little, but godliness is profitable for all things, having promise of the life that now is and of that which is to come.” 1 Timothy 4:8
God created our bodies to conceive, carry and give birth quickly without pain, trauma, or complications of any kind. Jesus hung on the cross, along with our sin, He bore sickness and disease of every kind upon His body and carried the pain of it all away! We have been redeemed from every curse, including childbirth pain, complications, etc. Overcome your fears by renewing your mind with God’s Word until you know beyond doubt that you don’t have to suffer or be traumatised in childbirth.
To experience labour and delivery without pain doesn’t necessarily mean that you will not feel anything. Your muscles still have to work hard to draw back your cervix and then to push your baby out of the birth canal.
“They shall not labor in vain, Nor bring forth children for trouble; For they shall be the descendants of the blessed of the Lord , And their offspring with them.” Isaiah 65:23
The Three Stages of Labour
It has been proven that fear produces tension, and tension produces pain in childbirth. Dr Grantley Dick Read, a Christian obstetrician discovered that much of pain during childbirth is due to tension, caused by fear and ignorance. Therefore, if you understand what physically occurs during childbirth and how your body is going to work, fear will not easily overwhelm you.
Be as specific and detailed as you want to be as you pray over the points stated in the photo above. Any time you start to tense up or become afraid, resist fear and place your body back in the submission of your spirit. I know of babies that have changed from breech or posterior position to the correct anterior position during labour. This was simply done by the parents taking authority over the situation by commanding the baby to move into the correct position for birth.
God During Labour
If there is ever a time that you will need to rely on God’s strength it will be during the third stage of labour. Your muscles have to work to push your baby out. It took me nearly an hour with Kaitlin, so with Aidan I specifically prayed it would be no longer than fifteen minutes. He was delivered within fourteen minutes — my contractions were just under five minutes apart, so after three pushes he was out!
I experienced a dramatic difference in labour when I relied on God’s strength. I know of women who have also experienced this and they didn’t have to push at all. Their muscles did all the work for them. We simply need to lean to use His strength and not do everything on our own because if we do we will quickly tire.
And the midwives said to Pharaoh, “Because the Hebrew women are not like the Egyptian women; for they are lively and give birth before the midwives come to them.” Exodus 1:19
For the majority of the contractions I coped quite well and praised God for the victory, but there were also times that I had to exercise authority over pain. I would take authority over the pain and command it to leave, focus on Jesus and the finished work on the cross. The pain would wane and ease off. In contrast, I couldn’t feel the contractions during my third labour with the twins, until the very end after my waters were broken.
“Before she was in labor, she gave birth; Before her pain came, She delivered a male child. Who has heard such a thing? Who has seen such things? Shall the earth be made to give birth in one day? Or shall a nation be born at once? For as soon as Zion was in labor, She gave birth to her children.” Isaiah 66:7-8
Remember that no matter what type of birth you ended up having, you haven’t failed if it didn’t go as planned. You can always prepare and learn how to walk by faith for your next pregnancy and birth.
A Time to be Born
It is important for babies to be born at the proper time, the full duration of a pregnancy as God designed, not when it is convenient for your or your doctor’s schedule. It’s important to note that the due date is an estimated date only. The season for a pregnancy can be anything from 38 to 42 weeks.
“To everything there is a season,
A time for every purpose under heaven:
A time to be born,” Ecclesiastes 3:1-2a
If your labour begins prematurely, this doesn’t mean that God has brought on labour. In the same way we don’t accept miscarriage as being God’s will, we don’t accept premature labour as His. You can take authority over the situation and pray for a full term healthy pregnancy and baby.
On the other hand, if your baby is overdue and the doctors want to induce labour, you can exercise authority over the situation and pray for labour to begin, and for your body to do what God created it to do to deliver your baby safely without any complications.
Each day past my due date seemed a week long. I knew babies could go at least 14 days past their due date, but I had convinced myself this was not going to happen to me! I started to become anxious. Thankfully after reading scriptures on patience, I received the peace to wait a couple more days until my baby was ready to be born.
I had specifically prayed that I would go into spontaneous labour and not need to be induced and that’s what happened just a few days later. In my heart, I knew I would not need to be induced. I had determined to focus on what I was doing, bringing forth a new life and not on my size. It is such a privilege to carry a baby and bring forth that little life.
Even though you may be preparing for a straightforward delivery, there might be unexpected complications. Hence, medical intervention is required. If so, then remember that God’s grace is sufficient and you haven’t failed if intervention is required. Continue to exercise your authority over the situation and declare that there will be no complications with the procedure and no side effects for you and your baby.
During my first labour, my contractions were strong but not painful. Then I tried the breathing techniques I learned during prenatal classes ‘just for fun’. The very next contraction became extremely strong and painful. I realised that I had switched from the supernatural to the natural but didn’t think to switch back because the newfound pain consumed me.
My doctor advised me to have an epidural and I agreed. I felt like a failure after it was administered. As it turned out, the epidural didn’t work. After I switched back to the spiritual, I was able to continue to stand on the Word for my delivery and by the time it came to push, the epidural had worn off and I was able to deliver without pain.
While some consider that medical intervention is not God’s best, you also need to remember that doctors are there to help God’s children, not to harm them. If you know in advance that medical intervention may be required, prepare by meditating on the finished work of the Cross and on who you are in Christ, and exercise authority over your body before the doctors proceed.
If there’s any risk to you or your baby’s health, you may need to follow your doctor’s advice to induce. However, you can exercise authority and command your body to begin labour so that you will not need to be induced.
If unavoidable, then prepare your body by exercising your authority over it and it it to be ready and respond quickly and efficiently to the medical procedure, like any other procedure you might face.
Pregnancy and Childbirth Prayer
“Thank you heavenly Father that the work that Jesus Christ did on the Cross has redeemed me from pain and complications and by His stripes I am healed.
I speak to my body in Jesus name:
Body, you will carry my baby the way God designed you to until the perfect time for birth. Then you are to function efficiently throughout the labour and delivery without any pain or complications and as God intends, you will delivery my baby free from harm.
You are then to recover quickly and efficiently to a healthy condition and be restored from all wounds.
In Jesus name, Amen!”
In the same way that God didn’t create the birth to be a painful, traumatic or complicated experience, He didn’t intend the recovery process to be that way either!
No matter the type of birth, there will be recovery needed. There may be different degrees of swelling and bruising, even if you didn’t have stitches. This can often be uncomfortable or even quite painful. God created the human body to repair itself so your body will eventually recover.
Exercise your authority over your body and command a quick, painless, and uncomplicated recovery and for it to return to a healthy, normal condition. I have ministered to many women who were able to experience a pain-free and uncomplicated recovery after a caesarean birth.
Also, I prayed and applied the same principles as I did during birth to afterbirth contractions and the pain disappeared.
To help you to spiritually prepare to breast-feed, you may want to cover these in prayer:
- Helpful midwives or nurses who can teach you the correct way to feed.
- Your baby to be a quick and efficient feeder and satisfied and comforted when fed.
- The perfect amount of milk supply for your baby, complete with enough nutrients and far stores to sustain your baby between feeds.
- No engorgement, infections or mastitis (a painful blockage of milk ducts)
- Perfect attachment nad compatibility with your baby’s mouth and your nipple, therefore decreasing the risk of sore or cracked nipples.
“That you may feed and be satisfied
With the consolation of her bosom,
That you may drink deeply and be delighted
With the abundance of her glory.”
For thus says the Lord: “Behold, I will extend peace to her like a river,
And the glory of the Gentiles like a flowing stream.
Then you shall feed;
On her sides shall you be carried,
And be dandled on her knees.”
The are two main forms of depression that can occur after childbirth: ‘Third Day Blues’/ ‘Baby Blues’ and postnatal depression (PND).
- Baby Blues: Can occur from within a few hours or up to a week after giving birth. They usually come on the 3rd or 4th day after the birth, when the milk supply comes in. A time of jumbled emotions and can swing between an overwhelming joy to emotional outburst. Hormones are usually the main culprit. No special treatment is required as they usually pass within a few days. Rest, support and understanding from loved ones are all helpful.
- PND: When such emotions continue for more than a month or become severe, you could be suffering from PND. Can begin anytime during pregnancy or up to the first 12 months after birth. PND is unique to every sufferer.
To admit you have a problem is the first step to recovery and not a sign of weakness or failure as a parent. For some, medication helps them to cope with life again. However, medication only numbs the emotions. They cannot heal them. Medication can only reach the physical and not spiritual. Only Jesus can heal the soul and help you overcome depression. God is a God of comfort!
“As one whom his mother comforts,
So I will comfort you;
And you shall be comforted in Jerusalem.”
Recovery from Postnatal Depression
This battle was constant at first but I soon grew in the truth of God’s word and walk by what God said about me and not by how I was feeling at the time. Even though my feelings, emotions and thoughts were real, I didn’t have to submit to and live under them. Instead I began to exercise my authority over them and have my feelings, emotions and thoughts submit to God’s Word instead. Instead of being a victim enslaved by my feelings, emotions and thoughts, I became a victor!
At the end of the day, PND is just another form of sickness. It has no legal right to stay or have the victory over you any longer. Jesus took ALL forms of sickness and disesase to the Cross and by His stripes you were healed.
“Surely He has borne our griefs
And carried our sorrows;
Yet we esteemed Him stricken,
Smitten by God, and afflicted.
But He was wounded for our transgressions,
He was bruised for our iniquities;
The chastisement for our peace was upon Him,
And by His stripes we are healed.”
Have you read this book? What are some of the things that spoke to you? Feel free to share them in the comments section below. You can also read my ‘Book Review: Christian Pregnancy Books’ post.