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On this day nine years ago, I was entering the hospital with signs that it could be my first child’s day of birth. It was a little earlier than expected. My husband and I were going to attend a child birth class the following weekend, so we didn’t even get a chance to have a crash course on what to do. We were clueless, to be honest! But when Baby needs to come, Baby comes despite any plans we make. I remember I had experienced a trickle of my water breaking and was uncertain if that was what it was so we began with some testing. The nurse left and came back and reported, “Looks like you are going to have a baby today.” At that moment, I remember feeling excited and completely scared. So many questions were rolling around in my head. Am I really ready for this? Will I truly “just know” what to do? I remember laying in my hospital bed, looking down at my bracelet and seeing my name on it, as a sign of reality that this truly WAS happening, ready or not.

I remember getting close to God, seeking his comfort in the quiet of my room because I knew that would be my only comfort when I have a job to do soon that I really had no idea how to do. Suddenly God whispered something into my heart that surprised me and changed the trajectory of my self-doubt. “I have a gift for you..

He whispered it to me like a proud papa that was so enamored by his own creation. I tugged on my hospital bracelet and felt an overwhelming sense of peace over me at that moment.

My daughter, Olivia was born that day and I realized the gift that God had shared with me. She was bright eyed and studied everything so closely when she entered the world. As I watch her grow up, I see she has the kindest and sweetest heart- full of compassion and mercy for others. I feel that I am still learning from her in this way.

This morning, on her 9th birthday, I replayed this moment in my head and realized that God feels this same sense of pride and accomplishment for each one of us that he brings into the world. God is so proud of you, just as you are. You are a gift to him. Perhaps if we all lean in close to him, he will whisper that into our hearts as well.

God was in more than just the creation of my daughter that day. He was in the peace I felt when I didn’t know what to do. He was in the peace of accepting a role that he was confident I could do even when I did not feel equipped. The process of delivery, the way my body was created to carry her life until she was ready to live outside of my body was created by him. Our God is also proud of the process of making us who we were created to be and the roles he has orchestrated for us. To narrow down the gift that day seems impossible. Was it his overwhelming peace over me? Was it the intimate heart conversation that we had that day? Was it the little life that I held in my arms that evening? The answer is- yes. All of them.

“Our God is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all we ask or think” — Ephesians 3:20.

“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. your eyes saw my unformed body.” Psalms 139:13-18

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