A Time to Give Birth and a Time to Die

Please forgive the personal nature of this blog. As you read my article, my daughter-in-law, Rachel Rainer, will be giving birth to Harper Grace Rainer by C-section. Though we anticipate no problems, both mom and baby have some risks.

Harper will be delivered prematurely to minimize the risks to Rachel. As most of you know Rachel and her husband, Jess Rainer, lost a son just 60 minutes after birth 19 months ago. Subsequently, the doctors are taking extra precautions with both Rachel and Harper.

The Excitement of a New Grandchild

I can’t wait to meet Harper. She will be my fifth grandchild. Another daughter-in-law, Erin Rainer, will be giving birth to my sixth grandchild about two weeks later.

I knew I would love my grandchildren; but I didn’t realize how much I would love them. Each of those boys and girls has stolen my heart.

God is so good to give us these wonderful grandchildren. I don’t deserve them, and I don’t take them for granted.

The Memory of Another Grandchild in a Newly Released Album

In the midst of the anticipated celebration about the birth of Harper, we in the Rainer family can’t forget what took place in February 2011. The death of William Thomas Rainer, up until a few days before his birth, was totally unexpected.

Now, in the same hospital with many of the same medical personnel, another child will be born. Our faith is totally in God, but I hope you understand why we have some apprehension. Our human frailties sometimes are too obvious.

Shortly after the death of Will, a Christian country singer named Will Peppers approached Jess and Rachel with a request for permission to write a song about the brief life of my grandson. They were overwhelmed with gratitude and readily agreed. The song, “60 Minutes,” is the lead song of his new album Testimony. I encourage you to listen to the song here and perhaps purchase the entire album. Every song is a personal testimony of the power and grace of our Lord Jesus Christ.

A Request for Prayer

Could I be so bold to ask for prayer for Rachel and Harper today? Jess and Rachel have been through much the past year and a half. I would be humbled and appreciative if you take time to pray for both the mom and the baby today.

I will be sending updates via Twitter and this blog. The anticipated time of delivery is between noon and 1:00 pm central time.

The writer of Ecclesiastes certainly pulled no punches. He said: “There is an occasion for everything, and a time for every activity under heaven: a time to give birth and a time to die.” He continued, “a time to weep and a time to laugh; a time to mourn and a time to dance” (Ecclesiastes 3:1-2, 4).

We have seen death, and we have mourned. Pray that today we will celebrate the birth of Harper Grace Rainer, and that we will know it is a time to laugh and a time to dance.

Posted on September 17, 2012

With nearly 40 years of ministry experience, Thom Rainer has spent a lifetime committed to the growth and health of local churches across North America.
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