The Pregnant Place
by Kristen Schiffman
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My husband and I were cuddled in bed last night, doing what all newlyweds do their first month of marriage, I suppose: Reading our Bibles.
I write as I smile.
Eric, my Man, felt particularly led to read Isaiah 6 – where as my mind felt “led” to drift and dream and wonder through all the books of the prophets. And as usual, landing me right smack in the middle of The Psalms.
As a writer I often jot down research notes in my Bible’s margins for future reference. It makes it much easier than having to drag out a ten-pound commentary book from under my desk. I am all about immediate results. This you can ask Christ on my behalf. Hey, we are working on it.
Anyway, there we were, newly -wedding it up, reading the Word. Eric in the zone and I somewhere in between thinking aloud and loudly thinking – I’m not sure which it was. When I noticed what I thought to be one of my profound, writing research notes in the tab of my Bible, right next to Psalm 84:3.
The verse reads:
“Even the sparrow has found a home, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may have her young— a place near your altar, LORD Almighty, my King and my God.”
Drawn in to my scribbled handwriting, I read- verbatim, and I kid you not:
“Jesus, if I were a pregnant bird…” followed by an arrow pointing to the above verse.
Hence, my Psalm 84:3 prayer:
“Jesus, if I were a pregnant bird I would so make my nest in the presence of your altar.”
You can imagine the fit of laughter this gave birth to as I had expected to read something PROFOUND. Some scholars’ note about the original Hebrew language or a side note learned while studying one of the great 18th century preachers’ commentaries.
Instead I read, “Jesus, if I were a pregnant bird…”
I announced my find to Eric, whom I still think wonders daily how Christ manages to work my quirks (and I) into His kingdom plan. If you guessed Eric’s eyeballs almost fell out of his head and his face turned a cherry-like color from all of the laughter, you have guessed right.
But, you know, I’ve been thinking about my Pregnant Place writing all day.
I will certainly never know what it is like to be a pregnant bird, searching for a place to nest with her young.
Heck, at this point in my life I don’t even know what it is like to be pregnant with a human baby, searching for an OBGYN I feel is capable of the delivery job.
However, I do know what it is like to be pregnant with emotion. With ambition. With desire. With plans. With determination. With adoration. With awe.
And this Crazy Chick desires nothing more than to bring all of her expectancy and nest it at the feet of Christ.
This Psalm hits me afresh, dripping with holiness as it sings:
“How lovely is your dwelling place, Lord Almighty! My soul yearns, even faints, for the courts of the Lord; my heart and my flesh cry out for the living God. Even the sparrow has found a home and the swallow a nest for herself where she may have her young—a place near your altar, Lord Almighty, my King and my God…”
I think today Christ whispered something to my heart that is worth sharing.
True, scholars’ notes and academics have their purposed place.
However it is not the drive for knowledge that is going to be my reward when all is said and done.
And, this evening, my heart could not be more humbled at the sound of Christ’s whisper to my heart.
“Kristen, your pregnant place prayer may be the most profound writing you ever pen.”
I invite you to nest with me, with whatever you find yourself “pregnant with” this moment, at the feet of The Savior-King.
May our souls ever yearn, even faint, for His courts.
Scripture borrowed from TNIV.
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This was great! I am glad I checked out this particular jewel. I loved your description "dripping with holiness" In my devotions this week - I actually journaled my thoughts on that particular Psalms - so it meant a lot to me to take it one step deeper. I do believe I will go back to my prayer journal and add a few lines of your inspiring words. The thought of being a pregnant bird will definitely be something that will forever stick in my mind. Thanks so much for sharing.
Wow! I love this, Kristen. Wow! It really touched my heart tonight. wonderful job! Laury
Absolutely Amen! Very touching and for me, it has such meaning as I struggle to leave my health "expectations" at the feet of Jesus. Thank you for sharing this beautiful and divinely inspired article!