A woman doesn't easily forget someone who serves her in her darkest hour. I just found out last night that one of the godliest ladies I know went home to be with the Lord. I rejoice for her because she will have many rewards in Heaven, but I am heavy-hearted for the loss that many, many people will feel at her passing.
Becky R. was more than our midwife, she was our friend and mentor and one of the most beautiful examples of Christ I have ever seen.
As we, a young, newlywed couple with no experience, prepared to deliver our first baby, she came to our home to do prenatal visits and spent hours with us, talking and answering questions, recommending books, and encouraging us to grow in the Lord through the process of pregnancy. The morning before I went into labor I was very, very sick with a stomach virus and was terrified for my baby's health, and she reassured me over the phone and helped me get through the day. When I knew I was in hard labor, she came from an hour and a half away on icy roads, on a MN winter night when the temps dipped to negative 20. She stayed up the entire night with us, rubbing my back hard and coaching me through contractions that were only a couple of minutes apart. Even though I was unable to have my last 3 babies with her because we had moved out west to my hometown, it was her voice in my head that I recalled when I was in labor with all of them because she knew exactly what to do and how to soothe a laboring woman with reassuring tones. She not only lost a night of sleep for us, and for hundreds of other women, but she fasted and prayed throughout the duration of my labor. She cleaned up the birthing pool and our home, left us homemade wild rice soup she had brought, took photos for us when we were too wiped out to think about it, made a photo CD for us so we could share it with my folks via e-mail across the miles the day of our daughter's birth, and came back the next day to check on Ali and I even though she had a long drive and had lost a night of sleep.
She "caught" 555 babies in her day. She believed it was a ministry and accepted donations but didn't charge for her services. In addition to being an amazing midwife, she lived out covenant marital love like I have never seen before. She stayed true to her vows even though it meant a lifetime of sacrifice for her. Such love is unheard of in our world today and reminds me of the covenant-keeping, never-stopping love of Jesus for his bride, the Church.
Reading her obituary online, it's evident to me that Becky was a Titus 2 and Proverbs 31 woman, through-and-through. She was industrious, helped those in need, served Christian families, was a pioneer in the homeschool movement in her area, used her gifts for the Lord, trained the younger women, cared for her family well, shared the Gospel, and aided many families in having large families frugally and naturally. Few women today have her strength and courage. I'm honored to have had her there with me during some of my most frightening and painful and wonderful and joyous hours as Alathia Joy entered the world. I can't wait to see her in Heaven. I wish, probably along with her daughters, grandchildren, and church family that she had lived longer than 62 years, but I know she is exactly where she wants to be right now.
We'll miss you Becky and we'll share your story with the little girl you helped us bring into the world! Your life was amazing, Spirit-filled, and worthy of imitation.