EXCERPTS FROM DAD'S "THESE ALL DIED IN FAITH!"--Given to Encourage Sara about Mary Dear's Birth DO 1704(a) 12/83
1. I THINK IF NEARLY EVERY WOMAN HAD A PERFECT DELIVERY & BIRTH, & NEARLY EVERYBODY CAME THROUGH PAINLESSLY & VICTORIOUSLY, A WOMAN WHO HAD A HARD TIME WOULD FEEL TERRIBLY CONDEMNED & guilty like, "What's the matter with me? I must be very bad or something." I think Sara's experience will encourage a lot of people. "If even Sara had a hard time & almost didn't make it & almost seemed to be defeated & nearly gave up, maybe there's some hopes for ME!"
2. (MARIA: WE HEARD ONE FAMILY COUPLE INSISTED ON NATURAL CHILDBIRTH when the doctor told them they should have a Caesarean & they lost the baby.) You know, a lot of it is the motive behind their insistence. My Mother used to discuss this, how some people insisted on trusting the Lord just because they knew they should, & therefore in spiritual pride they refused help even when they really didn't have the faith to trust the Lord.
3. THEY REFUSED THE NATURAL HELP WHICH MIGHT HAVE HELPED THEM, BUT THEY DIDN'T REALLY HAVE THE FAITH TO TRUST THE LORD, so they insisted on going the faith way without the faith, out of spiritual pride, because they thought they should have the faith or wanted to be proud of the fact that they had the faith & they did it by faith, but they just didn't have it.
4. YOU'VE EITHER GOT IT OR YOU HAVEN'T GOT IT, that's all, & if you haven't got it, you'd better go to the hospital & the Doctor! (Maria: Maybe the Lord uses that sometimes & even makes it necessary for you to be under the Doctor's care or have an operation or a Caesarian or whatever to humble you.)--To humble your spiritual pride, yes. To give you a little more sympathy for other people who haven't got the faith & have a hard time having faith, who might have a hard time trusting the Lord.
5. WELL IT TAKES ALL KINDS, & THERE ARE ALL KINDS OF PEOPLE, ALL KINDS OF FAITH & all kinds of strengths & all kinds of weaknesses. It takes all kinds to make a World & it takes all kinds to make our Family too. One guy in the Bible said to the Lord, "I believe, help Thou mine unbelief."
6. IT'S EASY FOR SOME PEOPLE TO BELIEVE FOR CERTAIN THINGS. They've got extra strong faith for certain things & they never even think to doubt or question. For other people, questioning & doubting & scepticism is a great problem, they've just got a lot of it. (Maria: But when they overcome it, it's all the greater victory.) Yes, I'd say that God gets His greatest victories out of seeming defeat.
7. IN ORDER TO HAVE A POSITION OF REAL LEADERSHIP IN THE LORD, SOMETIMES THE LORD HAS TO REALLY HUMBLE YOU & BREAK YOU, & I really think that's perhaps what the Lord did with Sara. She had everything to make her pretty proud of her record & her skill & expertise in having & rearing children, to make her high & mighty & lifted up to tell the whole World how to do it.
8. WHO KNOWS?--MAYBE SHE NEEDED THAT EXPERIENCE TO REALLY SORT OF BREAK HER & HUMBLE HER & REMIND HER THAT IT'S ALL THE LORD. It can happen to even her, the greatest & the best & the most looked-up to & almost worshipped for her greatness in childcare & child rearing, & entrusted with the most important little children on Earth & doing such a marvellous job of rearing them!
9. SHE HAD EVERYTHING GOING FOR HER, every reason to be praised for being almost perfect & doing such a tremendous job & everybody in the World looking up to her as a perfect & ideal mother, having the perfect & ideal children, caring for the perfect children, the King & Queen's children, & having such beautiful children of her own & being such a perfectionist in childcare & all of these things. Who knows, maybe there was a little spiritual pride. Maybe there was a little self-satisfaction that, "Well, I am pretty good at this & I'm pretty big & important, I'm pretty great, look at me."
10. THE DEVIL REALLY TEMPTS YOU WITH THAT SORT OF THING TO MAKE YOU GET HIGH & LIFTED UP, especially if you accept the praise of men & you don't concentrate or remind them it's the Lord. I could hardly think of anybody that seems to be more perfect than Sara & has such faith in the Lord for everything--for the children, & for healing & such marvellous teaching ability, such patience, such love, I mean she's just about perfect! And frankly, to an old sinner like me, it was sort of comforting to know that Sara was not quite so perfect & that she could actually get mad enough to cuss & get desperate enough to scream & have her faith almost fail at the last minute because of such pain & such a horrible ordeal.
11. WHEN I READ HER STORY IT SORT OF ENCOURAGED ME, I thought, "Well, even Sara's not perfect. She almost didn't make it, but she did!" Give her credit, she did! The Lord pulled her through. He obviously really humbled her. It wasn't because of all of her teaching on how to have a child or how to give birth or natural childbirth & perfect delivery & all that kind of stuff. Maybe the Lord had to sort of humble her to really remind her that it was all the Lord & only He could really do it, not all of her perfectionist training & perfectionist practice & preparation & the arm of flesh & exercises & diet, this, that & the other etc.
12. IN THE FINAL ANALYSIS, ALL THAT DOESN'T EVEN MEAN A THING WITHOUT THE LORD! Only the Lord can do it & He can do it under some pretty strenuous circumstances, some pretty rough & tough methods if you really need to be brought down a few notches & humbled & made to sort of say "Uncle!" when He's putting the pressure on you & leaning on you to really remind you that you really are totally utterly dependent on Him!
13. MAYBE THE LORD HAD TO GIVE HER A LITTLE HUMBLING EXPERIENCE SO SHE WOULDN'T GET TOO PUFFED UP IN PRIDE. If she had had a glowing marvellous easy victorious delivery she could have said, "Ah, ha! See there! I told you, you can do it! This is the way it ought to be done. I am the perfect example, I am the ideal. Look at me. Look at what I can do!"
14. SO WHO KNOWS, MAYBE THE LORD HAD TO REALLY HUMBLE HER & really take her down a peg or two in order that she might have a little more mercy & sympathy & patience with others who can't do all that she tells them to do & that they should do & should be able to do & should have the faith for. I'm sure that experience must have certainly humbled her & made her a lot more sympathetic for others who don't have such glorious victorious deliveries & who don't have so much faith & utter trust etc.
15. I WAS KIND OF ENCOURAGED TO FIND OUT THAT SHE COULD KIND OF GET DISCOURAGED & GET ANGRY & ALMOST GIVE UP & CUSS TOO. So who knows, maybe the Lord was kind of knocking some of that pride out of her through that experience. It certainly must have humbled her to know she didn't have the glorious victorious time she was expecting, & the Lord let her go through a really horrible ordeal.
16. WHO KNOWS, MAYBE IT'S TO ENCOURAGE OTHERS WHO AREN'T SO PERFECT & HAVEN'T GOT SUCH FAITH, that the Lord loves them too, even if they can't go the perfect way & have the perfect faith & have the perfect delivery, but instead they have problems. Even you, Maria, had a few problems, both times. So it wasn't absolutely perfect. You tore both times & the last time after the baby was born they had to knock you out to get that placenta out. They waited & waited & waited for it & it didn't come, there was even a knot in the cord & it's just a miracle that you made it & the baby made it!
17. IT'S GOTTA BE THE LORD & HE WANTS TO DO IT & HE WANTS TO GET THE CREDIT FOR IT & THE GLORY. If in any way, shape or form you think you're going to get a little credit for it & be able to brag about how you did it & made it & had the faith & all the rest, He's apt to slap you down a little to show you Who's Boss & make you say "Uncle!" to really humble you & make you look to the Lord.
18. HE KNOWS HOW TO KEEP YOU IN LINE, KEEP YOU IN CHECK so you don't get the big head & don't get too puffed up & too self-confident, have too great a sense of false security. The Lord really knows how to keep you in line, keep you in shape, toeing the mark so you won't miss the mark. So, praise the Lord.
19. THE WHOLE NAME OF THE GAME IS FAITH & TRUST & TO TRUST HIM ANYHOW. "Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him. (Job 13:15) Though I had a tough time & I don't know why, yet will I trust Him. Though He let this or that happen, yet will I trust Him. Though He let this affliction afflict me or my children or my wife or my loved ones or some Home or something, still I've got to trust Him." He loves to see if you've really got real faith & you're going to trust Him anyhow, no matter what. Even if you weren't a shining example & didn't have a glorious victory.--You trusted Him in seeming defeat, & that's a victory in itself, to be a good loser!--More than a conqueror! (Rom.8:38)
20. LOOK AT THE MARTYRS. "THESE ALL DIED IN FAITH."--That's the greatest thing that could be said of them. They died & they were killed & they were martyred!--But they never lost faith, they never lost heart. "These all died in faith." (Heb.11:13) Are you even willing to die & still trust the Lord? Can you still have faith even as you die? Can you die in faith?
21. SARA NEARLY DIED, BUT I'D SAY THE LORD PUT THE SQUEEZE ON HER TO THE POINT THAT HE SAW THAT SHE WAS GOING TO DIE IN FAITH EVEN IF HE KILLED HER, & then He took the screws off, He let up. He pushed her to the brink to where she even thought she was dying, but she was still trusting, so I'd say that was a glorious victory. She was about to die but she was still determined to trust the Lord & did! Even if she got mad & screamed in pain & cussed the Devil & cussed the pain & the situation & everything else, at least she was still trusting God! She went right to the brink, maybe the Lord was pushing her like He did Job, to the very edge to see if she'd still trust Him & she did! So I'd say that was quite a victory!
22. THAT'S THE GREATEST VICTORY OF ALL, WHEN YOU SEEM TO BE DEFEATED & YOU STILL TRUST THE LORD. That must be the greatest & the most pleasing thing about us to God, that even when it looked like you were lost & you were defeated & you didn't make it, you still trusted Him anyhow, like Job. The Lord must really be pleased with that kind of faith.--Faith in the face of disaster, faith in the face of agony, faith in the face of death! "These all died in faith."
23. I THINK THAT WAS A TERRIBLE TEST, it was almost an awful test, it was a terrific test. She nearly died but she still believed, she still had faith, she didn't lose her heart, she didn't lose faith. She may have thought she lost heart & got discouraged & screamed & cussed & everything else, but she held on & she pulled through. Her faith pulled her through. The Lord pulled her through. He really squeezed her to see if He could still trust her anyhow, & it may not have looked or sounded very victorious & to her it sort of looked like a failure or a defeat, but I doubt if the Doctor thought so. In fact, they complimented her & praised her for how she pulled through.
24. THE DOCTOR THANKED THE LORD! The Doctor praised her afterward & thanked the Lord that He'd had a victory, he looked on it as a victory. She made it! She had the baby, everything was fine in the end. Everything was beautiful & she came through & had a glorious victory out of seeming defeat. It looked like a defeat to her but it resulted in great victory, & that's the greatest victory of all, when you still trust the Lord when it looks like you're defeated. That's the greatest test of faith of all, so praise the Lord!
25. AND OF COURSE THE GREATEST TEST OF FAITH IS DEATH! She really thought she was about to die, & "These all died in faith." (Heb.11:13) Think of that! Praise the Lord. They died in faith, think of that! They died trusting God. Even Job didn't do that. How about that? He thought he was going to die but he didn't, but the martyrs did! And every man, woman & child of God that ever lived still died, but they died in faith still trusting God. That's the ultimate test, if you can die trusting the Lord, that's a greater test than Job had to go through & that's just about what dear Sara went through.
26. DEATH IS THE FINAL TEST OF FAITH! How about that? If you can die in faith, you've got more faith than Job had.--At least more than he had right then. Of course he died later, I presume, I haven't heard otherwise, have you? I really got a glorious victory out of that Letter! That's a good verse, "These all died in faith."
27. SARA THOUGHT SHE WAS GOING TO DIE BUT SHE STILL HELD ON, SHE STILL HAD FAITH even though she was in such pain & agony she screamed & cussed & nearly passed out! She thought she was going to die, but she held on, she still had faith. You didn't really curse God, did you? (Sara: No, no!) You just cursed the pain, cursed the Devil! Well, that's okay. Cuss him out, curse the Devil, curse the pain! Curse it! I cuss every now & then, when they need it & I get mad enough. I cuss some people that make me mad. I'll tell you, you can put up with some people so long & then you've got to clamp down.
28. IT'S GOING TO BE A GREAT ENCOURAGEMENT TO THE PEOPLE WHO DON'T HAVE GLORIOUS CHILDBIRTHS & great victory & a miraculously easy time! What about all the people who don't? The Bible talks about women having pain & some women in the Bible even died in childbirth!
29. JOB ONLY SAID, "THOUGH HE SLAY ME, YET WILL I TRUST HIM," but God didn't slay him. All the martyrs that died in faith had bigger faith than Job! So you nearly died but you were dying in faith. PTL? (Sara: I remember that John started quoting Psalm 23 & he said right at the most crucial time, "Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death" & I realised what was happening, that I was sinking. I realised that that was what it was. And so that's when I began to rebuke the Devil & I got the verse "Who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage." (Heb.2:15) Right then I realised that it was the Enemy & that the Lord wouldn't allow it. That's when I began rebuking & that's when I starting cursing.)
30. WHAT'S WRONG WITH CUSSING THE DEVIL? (Sara: I wondered what the hospital people thought when I was yelling, "TYJ! Hallelujah! God damn you!") Hallelujah! Fight! Fight! (Sara: I didn't realise I was doing it till later. I thought I was only thinking it inside but John said I was actually screaming it out loud.) "As a man thinketh in his heart so is he." "Out of the fullness of the heart the mouth speaketh."
31. WELL HONEY, I THINK YOU WON A GLORIOUS VICTORY! You survived in spite of all that pain & hard time & you brought into the World a beautiful baby over there, & all's well that ends well. So PTL! (Maria: And also we should bring out for the childrens' sake that most people don't have such a hard time when they have babies. Sara had a serious problem with her spine when she was young & that's why she had a harder time. But usually it isn't that difficult.)
32. (SARA: AND WHEN I WAS IN LABOUR I THOUGHT OF YOU, how your Mother had spinal trouble & didn't have the last inches of her vertebrae, & yet she had you & you were 11 pounds! But because of all your Letters about Heaven we don't even worry about dying when we know what's ahead. I remember how encouraged we were about Heaven at the time & those were the latest Letters, so I didn't worry. Thinking ahead about death or Heaven is no burden anymore. It's just like the Tribulation, it's no longer something that you worry about or consider such a big deal, it's a victory!) It's a release actually, a graduation. PTL!
33. (FAM: I THOUGHT SARA'S TESTIMONY WAS REAL INSTRUCTIVE because I don't think I've read a testimony of what to do when everything doesn't go according to plan. But it's a real lesson of how to get the victory & cope if something like that ever happened. It encouraged my faith, it really inspired me!) Well, I was really amazed, I mean it thrilled me how she hung on though she was practically dying, & she still trusted the Lord & still didn't give up. I thought that was a real battle & you won the victory!
34. WE HOPE TO ENCOURAGE ALL PARENTS HERE THAT THEY MUST BE VERY DEFINITE ABOUT THEIR FAITH FOR CHILDBIRTH, & be led of the Lord themselves in each situation, as not everyone is physically or even spiritually capable of having natural childbirth! Of course, we'd all like to be delivered as naturally as possible, & we mothers feel that childbirth is a beautiful special experience that draws us closer than ever before to Jesus, but no one should feel condemned that they've "failed the test" when they come to their own decision or follow the doctor's counsel that a natural delivery might not be the Lord's will or best for mother &/or baby.
35. IF YOU'VE BEEN PRAYING FOR THE LORD'S WILL IN YOUR LABOUR & DELIVERY, & PRAYING FOR THE DOCTOR & HIS STAFF'S WISDOM & anointing, then you should trust not only the Lord's leading at the time, but also seriously consider the doctor's counsel! Refusing the expert's counsel could lead to serious & sad consequences in such a matter of life & death! Some doctors are wrong at times but many times they are right, so pray desperately for the Lord to lead you & the doctor when in labour, & do what is best for a safe delivery!
36. HOW CRUEL & CONDEMNING, EVEN SELF-RIGHTEOUS WE WOULD BE TO LOOK DOWN ON SOME DEAR MOTHER who just can't bear the strain of natural childbirth & feels she really needs medication or the doctor's help for her delivery. That decision is definitely up to the mother & the Lord! As Maria explained to me,
37. "DIFFERENT PEOPLE HAVE FAITH FOR DIFFERENT THINGS. Some lack faith for finances but have strong faith for healing. Some may have pioneer faith yet don't have strong faith for childbirth, for example. We just don't all have faith for the same things & should never judge or condemn others for the decision they have made with the Lord & their faith, at their specific time & situation, etc." Whatever decision the mother makes she should be certain of & not feel condemned about it afterwards, nor let others condemn her! "According to your faith be it unto you!"
38. I WAS POSITIVE THE LORD WAS IN CONTROL AT MARY DEAR'S BIRTH, & I also knew the Devil was really fighting against it! I'm sure I did the right thing to endure it to the end, yet I can surely understand our mothers who've had Caesareans, for example, if they personally decided at the height of a long difficult labour to follow the doctor's advice to have the Caesarean, or decided on their own to take anaesthesia for an easier & safer delivery, especially if the baby was in danger!
39. MARIA EXPLAINED TO ME, "THE LORD KNOWS WE'RE FRAIL, 'HE KNOWETH OUR FRAME, THAT WE ARE BUT DUST' (Ps.103:14), & He doesn't judge our righteousness according to our weakness or whether we had a natural childbirth or not. Of course, we'd never plan to have an unnatural childbirth, but if your doctor strongly advises you otherwise, you'd better pray & be sure of what you have the faith for!"
40. AND DON'T FORGET THAT HAVING A GOOD HELPER OR TWO WHO ARE VERY STRONG IN THE WORD & FAITH can be a tremendous strength to you during labour, as "In the multitude of counsellors there is safety & lacketh not wisdom!" (Pro.11:14; 24:6b) I was so very thankful for full-of-faith John to help coach me in the Word--the primary prerequisites for a labour helper! There were other more experienced people available to assist me in labour, but because of John's great faith & knowledge of the Word & his very helpful, humble, submitted & positive attitude we considered him the best qualified for the job, & what a blessing he was!
41. WHEN ANOTHER SISTER WAS LATER DUE TO DELIVER, MARIA RECOMMENDED THAT ANOTHER FAITHFUL SINGLE BROTHER ASSIST HER IN LABOUR & BIRTH, one who'd never even seen a birth before, but who loves the Word & has lots of faith! They testified that memorising together the same chapters & promises & DMs etc. had forearmed & prepared them so much that they were full of faith & really united at the birth, PTL!
42. WELL, ALL THIS TO SAY THAT NEITHER JESUS NOR HIS WORD WILL EVER FAIL YOU!--Whatever the LORD wills in the birth of His child, His gift, we know in full faith & assurance the HE cannot fail, even when WE are faithless! May God bless each & every one of you mothers with His WORD, grace & victory for your labour & delivery--He'll NEVER fail you! PTL!
Copyright (c) 1998 by The Family