These past two weeks have been some of the most challenging and uplifting weeks of my life with the birth of Addison Grace Warren and Esther Ruth Askew, otherwise known as our grandchildren. I’m a grandfather! Wow…say that backwards — wow! Their births were so much the same, but totally different. First of all, they are healthy, breathing and beautiful. Secondly, they had very different ways of getting here, but they are here. We got a call from our son, Ty saying, “I think you need to start the nine hour drive to get here in time for the birth.” Sure enough, the next morning Addison Grace Warren was born weighing 6lbs 14oz. Healthy and sometimes even smiling she lived up to her name by “gracing” our lives with her presence. Awesome! Simply awesome! Eight days later we get a call from our daughter Natalie saying they were going to go ahead and induce labor, and then deliver the baby. Sure enough, the next day Esther Ruth Askew was born weighing in at 10lbs 1oz. She was born per her namesake for “such a time as this!” Two — not one — two grandchildren. What an awesome blessing for all the family.
Even though both deliveries were totally different they both had the same result, new life…birth! The mothers and fathers are totally different. The babies themselves are totally different. They do have one major thing in common, though. They are alive and growing. All this brings to mind the new birth those who accept Christ experience. All are totally different people from different backgrounds who are brought to the point of new birth through different experiences. All are different, but share one common thing…birth. The first birth gives us life; the second birth gives us abundant life.
*Important note– If people are walking around, they have already experienced the first birth. Now they need to hear about the second one. We are the ones with the Message. From birth to new birth, we have the opportunity to lead others to transition from the first one to the second one by sharing one simple thing — our experience.
I will never forget the birth of my children and my grandchildren. It keeps life in perspective. My new birth as a believer is my perspective, and it impacts me every moment of every day as I grow up in the grace and love of my Lord. It turns my crank and keeps my life purpose fresh and growing. Listen to Paul’s perspective on sharing the new birth he experienced…
Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. And pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ, for which I am in chains. Pray that I may proclaim it clearly, as I should. Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.
From birth to birth, both of them are timely. We need “grace” and we need to shine like a “star”, which is what Esther’s name means. So, let your light shine and tell others of the grace that gives them new birth. I can’t wait for the new birth these girls will experience some day in the future. For now, I will help them grow in the first one. Thank you, girls — Popsie’s proud.
David Warren Worship Pastor