The First Christmas, Part 3

Rachel Kent

Blogger: Rachel Kent

I’ve spent a lot of time already this Christmas season thinking about Mary. For those of you who don’t already know, I had my firstborn three months ago–a baby girl. I had her in the hospital with nurses and a midwife there to attend me. Mary was in a cold stable or barn and I bet Joseph played a major role in the delivery–he might have been the only one there. My husband, a trained EMT, was scared at the thought of delivering our baby if we didn’t make it to the hospital in time. I can’t imagine how I would have felt as Mary, knowing that Joseph was going to be the one delivering our son. I’m sure she was very nervous and even embarrassed about Joseph seeing her like that, but I also know God picked Mary because of her great faith. She was likely trusting God for her labor and delivery just as much as she was for her day-to-day needs.

She must have been one tough cookie to go through her first labor while on a trip away from her home and family with just her new, virgin husband there to attend her. I thought I was going to die and I had a team of experienced people there waiting on me hand and foot. I changed 1 diaper the whole time I was in the hospital!

I have a feeling there’s one thing we both had in common though–we both felt the intense love of being a mother for the first time. Mary felt it while holding her newborn son in a stable and I felt it while snuggling my little girl in our hospital room.  I’ll never forget the moment I became a mom. My love for my daughter is probably equal to Mary’s love for her children–I love my baby with every fiber of my being. I’ll just keep praying that my faith and trust in God might grow to be like Mary’s someday too.

May God bless you this Christmas! His love for you is even more amazing than a mother’s love for her child.

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24 Comments

  • Lisa says:

    Rachel,
    Your baby girl is beautiful! You are so right. Framing what Mary experienced in that way, puts her faith and trust on an even greater level.

    • jacqueline fairchild gillam says:

      Dear Rachel: Thank you for sharing this very private time and the beautiful picture. Merry Christmas to you and your perfect little girl.

      jacqueline gillam fairchild

  • Jeanne T says:

    Rachel, what a beautiful post. And I agree with Lisa, your daughter is beautiful! It’s fun to “finally” see pictures of her. :)

    Mary amazes me too. Her quiet faith and steadfast character always encourage me to “go deeper with God.”

    I’ve thought about Joseph being the only one who could help her with delverering Jesus, and how scary that must have been. I love how you brought out her faith being a major factor as she went through this process. It will be so amazing to meet her in heaven one day.

  • Lori says:

    Congradulations on the birth of your beautiful daughter. You must be so excited to celebrate Christmas this year with it being her first and your first with being a new mom.

  • Beautiful post. Thanks.
    Knowing Mary’s love makes the Cross that much more powerful.

  • Your little girl is soooo adorable! I don’t have kids yet, but I can already imagine what it must feel like. And yet…I don’t think I have a clue.

    Have you ever see “The Nativity Story” movie? It came out several years ago and just really depicts how hard that journey to Bethlehem must have been for Mary. I mean, riding that far on a donkey or whatever would be hard enough, but super pregnant? Wow.

  • It’s taken me three tries to comment. Oh, Rachel, the look in your eyes! Sniff. Oh, here I go again.
    Our first was due Decemeber 22nd. GAH!! Then 7 weeks before the due date, I was diagnosed with a bad case of toxemia. I believe they call it pre-eclampsia in the US. I was on 24/7 hyper vigilent,closely watched bed rest. ALL I could think of was both of us surviving. A friend’s neighbour had the same condition and made it to the hospital within 10 minutes of coding. I was scared.
    But as I lay on the couch and my BFF made Christmas cookies, we’d talk about Mary, the donkey ride across the desert while 9 months pregnant and having a baby 2000 years ago. In a barn. No crash carts, not heart monitors , no NICU team hovering, no bad APGAR scores.
    But then again, she knew she carried the Son of God. Sometimes I think about the angels pacing the halls of heaven, wondering aloud “Is He born? Is He alright? Why a BARN? He is the King, why not a palace?”

    Congratulations, Mom and Dad, have a wonderful Christmas with your new little angel. And yes, sticking a bow on the baby’s head does make a cute picture.

  • Congratulations, Rachel. How exciting that you’ll be a first time mom this Christmas.

    This time of year, the Sunday school kids and I talk a lot about what it must have been like to be Mary, so young, and carrying such a great responsibility. Oh, that we all could have the faith of Mary when she said, “Let it be to me according to your word.”

    Many blessings.

  • Leia Brown says:

    Rachel,
    What a beautiful daughter and a beautiful post! I, too, was absolutely floored with the intense love I had for my firstborn. Of course I had loved many people – my husband, my family, my friends – but the love that I had for that baby boy – wow– I didn’t even know that flavor of love existed. Thank you for pointing out that Mary must have felt that way about baby Jesus. He wasn’t just God incarnate. He was her son. It’s hard to get my mind around that! Helpless baby. Almighty God. The two just don’t mix, and yet … they did.

  • Sarah Sundin says:

    Thank you for sharing, Rachel – and for the adorable photos. Enjoy her first Christmas.

    My first Christmas as a mom, I felt overwhelmed with emotions. My little guy – 2 1/2 months old – was so tiny and weak and completely dependent on me. I appreciated Jesus’ sacrifice to willingly come as an infant so much more. And the Father’s sacrifice of giving up His beloved Son, whom He loved with even more fierce a love than mine for my son…it broke my heart in whole new ways.

  • Lacee Hogg says:

    Congratulations on your first Christmas as a mama! My first (last year) brought lots of reminiscing about Mary, too. What a precious gift motherhood is! It wakes you up in a way you never thought possible.

  • Rachel Kent Rachel Kent says:

    Thanks, everyone!

  • Rachel,

    Thank you for sharing from your heart. Our first was born on the 20th – we celebrate her 24th birthday tomorrow! I, too, couldn’t help but think about Mary and Joseph all alone, seemingly abandoned to their own devices. I’ll never forget the first time Kevin (my husband) held our little girl and looked down into her face. I can only imagine what thoughts must have been going through Joseph’s mind when he held Jesus that first time – doubt? Fear? Wonder? Did he connect with this child he would raise who wasn’t of his loins? The future must have loomed large and completely terrifying to him. But the fact that they went through that together must have also sealed the bonds of their marriage in a way nothing else could. I LOVE the story of Christ’s birth – so many human intricacies.

    Blessings to you, and daddy, and your precious gift.
    Becky

  • I love Mary’s story. Every year our church sings a jazzed up version of the Magnificat, “My soul, my soul magnifies the Lord. He has done great things for me.” It gives me chills every time I hear it. I still remember looking into my firstborn’s face and being overwhelmed with love and awe. I can’t imagine what Mary felt, knowing this baby was also God’s son. Incredible.

  • Thank you for sharing your thoughts and your beautiful little girl with us. As moms we are incredibly blessed to know a fierce love that echoes the Father’s love for us. I remember the quiet moments of rocking my first son the Christmas after he was born and the emotions I experienced as I carried my second son through the Christmas season. It was a privilege to identify with Mary during those times. Now Christmas with an 11-year-old and an 8-year-old is loud and rambunctious and making time to ponder the first Christmas can seem difficult. But that awe and wonder is never really far away from a mother’s heart.

    Have a blessed Christmas!

  • Rachel,
    Thank you for your beautiful reflection on Mary. I agree that she had to have been “one tough cookie.” I also feel sure that she trusted in God in a wish I could emulate.

    Congratulations to you and your husband on the birth of your baby! I wish you and your family a wonderful and blessed Christmas and a peace-filled New Year!

  • MARK DANTONI says:

    Daughters are the best. Congratulations on your first Christmas together. Feliz Navidad!

  • What a pretty little girl! I know you are proud and feel so blessed. Merry Christmas!

  • Sherry Kyle says:

    Rachel, your baby girl is so precious! I was pregnant three times during Christmas, and each time I felt a special connection with Mary. :)

    Have a wonderful first Christmas together!

  • Jan Thompson says:

    Thank you for the article! Insightful! I agree that only by the grace of God could Mary have undergone what she went through. When I had my child I had the luxury of a sanitized hospital room with RNs at my beck and call, and insurance to pay for everything :-) And a working car to take the baby home in :-) Merry Christmas!

  • Merry first Christmas to your little one! In the years ahead your Christmas tree will overflow with a plethora of handmade ornaments. You’ve entered into an exciting and sometimes exasperating season of life.The Lord is so gentle with us as parents.

  • Lovely post, Rachel!

    Thanks for sharing pics of your little angel! Yall are sure going to have fun this Christmas! :) We are too. My sister just had a baby girl a few weeks ago.

    Merry Christmas!

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